Pull request comments should be private to the reviewer until complete
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When reviewing a pull request, newly added comments by a reviwer should be batched and only sent once the reviewer completes a review (accept/reject). This provides the reviewer an opportunity to evaluate all comments holistically before sending them out. Currently reviewers can opt to not press the "Comment" button, but that leaves the comment at risk of being lost when the reviewer navigates away from the file or closes the web page. There are times when developers immediately respond to feedback posted on a review before a reviewer has completed the review. This can be detrimental as individual comments can be taken out of content, or reviewers may want to make edits to comments after seeing additional changes without having the initial comments sent.
James Loftus-Mercer commented
I propose a variation that would keep things flexible (and also address Atwood's feedback, I believe): introduce an easy `save as draft` option for individual comments, plus a `send all drafts` action.
The formal completion actions (accept/reject/waiting-for-author/etc) can all implicitly `send all drafts`, but it is useful to be able to send a batch of related comments without toggling your overall completion status.
timothy Atwood commented
Just to confirm, but I'd still want comments after the initial "accept/reject/etc" to go through immediately and not be batched. What you propose is good for the initial code review but after that, I'd think it is more beneficial to see responses in real time and not have to constantly reset my approval to send my comments.