rsync always writes "(new) backup_dir is ..." to STDOUT. Is this really necessary?
rsync -a --delete --backup --backup-dir="_before-$(date +%F)" $source $dest
(new) backup_dir is _before-2016-03-27
This seems to have appeared in 3.1.1, which created the directory even if it was not needed (see bug #11423).
Version 3.1.2 doesn't create useless backup-dirs any more, but if it does it reports it to STDOUT which is also quite useless. We have --verbose when we want to check what is going on. If everything works alright, I feel that rsync without -v should remain silent, as is customary in Unix tools.
Yeah, that print needs this check: if (INFO_GTE(BACKUP, 1))
Fix committed to git (0f7db203fb4125e9ec8851bb0ff8878258fc4a05).