Affiliations: [a] Software Engineering Research Unit, Fondazione Bruno Kessler, IRST, Trento, Italy. E-mails: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com | [b] University of Trento, Trento, Italy | [c] Ontology and Conceptual Modeling Research Group, UFES, Espírito Santo, Brazil. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Corresponding author: Itzel Morales-Ramirez, Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Via Sommarive 18, I-38123 Trento-Povo, Italy. E-mail: email@example.com.
Note:  Accepted by: Nicola Guarino
Abstract: Online user feedback is principally used as an information source for evaluating customers’ satisfaction for a given goods, service or software application. The increasing attitude of people towards sharing comments through the social media is making online user feedback a resource containing different types of valuable information. The huge amount of available user feedback has drawn the attention of researchers from different fields. For instance, data mining techniques have been developed to enable information extraction for different purposes, or the use of social techniques for involving users in the innovation of services and processes. Specifically, current research and technological efforts are put into the definition of platforms to gather and/or analyze multi-modal feedback. But we believe that the understanding of the type of concepts instantiated as information contained in user feedback would be beneficial to define new methods for its better exploitation. In our research, we focus on online explicit user feedback that can be considered as a powerful means for user-driven evolution of software services and applications. Up to our knowledge, a conceptualization of user feedback is still missing. With the purpose of contributing to fill up this gap we propose an ontology, for explicit online user feedback that is founded on a foundational ontology and has been proposed to describe artifacts and processes in software engineering. Our contribution in this paper concerns a novel user feedback ontology founded on a Unified Foundational Ontology (UFO) that supports the description of analysis processes of user feedback in software engineering. We describe the ontology together with an evaluation of its quality, and discuss some application scenarios.
Keywords: User feedback ontology, communication ontology, speech act theory, user feedback analysis, requirements engineering, software engineering