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Time to time I come across the following situation:

  1. I notice that something is wrong on SE and needs to change.
  2. I go to Meta.SE to find out this already have been reported by someone with little yet positive feedback from community and no official response. I also have something (in my opinion) valuable to further justify that this problem needs fixing.

Now, what am I supposed to do next?

  • Upvote the question pointing the problem out. Most obvious thing to do, but doesn't help much with attracting attention.
  • Comment of question pointing adding my idea on why it's so important. Not bad, but will help even less in ways of attention.
  • Post an answer instead of comment from previous point. But I don't really have an answer?..
  • Post another question with my arguments only to be closed as dupe. Seemingly rather effective at attracting attention, but I know better than doing so.
  • Post a bounty on question (after commenting and upvoting): probably good at getting attention, but whom am I offering rep to? The answer I'm expecting would be from SE itself and it feels odd to give away internet points to point out someone else's design issues.
  • Give up my ideals and take part in Twitter Driven Development. Probably efficient, but makes me sad.
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In order of importance:

  1. Upvote. While a single vote may seem insignificant, if everyone thinks their one vote doesn't matter, such problems are never going to accumulate the votes that make them 'significantly upvoted'.

  2. If you have 'further justification for why this should happen', a comment or answer depending on the size of your justification are okay on Meta.SE. It's better to have the further justifications in one place (a single q/a/comments) than to have them scattered across several duplicates.

    When deciding which one to pick, a comment or answer, you can consider that adding an answer 'bumps' the post onto the active questions list which is the default shown on the homepage, adding a comment doesn't do that. This can be both good and bad, depending on the importance and quality of your further justifications: an answer will get you more attention but will also be held against slightly higher standards.

  3. You could add a bounty. Though those have a notoriously low success rate, it might attract more votes to the question, which in turn can help it become 'significantly upvoted'. Still, it might be better to just skip straight to the next list item.

  4. Try and see if your 'problem' relates to any of the things listed here, in the list of things SE is currently working on now. If so, flag for moderator attention and ask us to add a status-review tag to the post. If you could add a short note in that flag on how/why it relates to work that's currently being done, even better.

That's about it.

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In addition to Tinkeringbell's excellent answer:

Consider offering a solution as well as your comments (i.e. have something constructive to add to the conversation). Bringing something positive (or at least offering something to make the situation better) will often bring more attention (and discussion) than adding to any pre-existing woes.

However, there are some things that cannot be fixed to everyone's satisfaction and you just have to resign yourself to living with it. There are times when no amount of pushing will make something better.

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    "... there are some things that cannot be fixed..." In such cases, a status-declined would be helpful. Knowing that it is in fact in the won't fix category at least remove frustration with the issue seemingly being ignored. – Chindraba Jun 7 at 18:14
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    The issues may also be cultural or strategic in nature. – Snow Jun 7 at 19:52
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    Even when it's not a "bug" or feature request, it's still nice to have some word "from on high" that the current status will be maintained. As an example, check this current issue. – Chindraba Jun 7 at 22:01

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