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https://www.duolingo.com/katriik

A less painful streak loss?

katriik
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(I'm unable to add this suggestion to the Incubator forum) Dear Duolingo​, Today, due to unforeseen situation, I lost my 467 days streak. I totally understand the rules on how this works and I'm not here to request them back.

While I thank you very much for all the teaching you provided during this 1 year and 102 days, I feel sad for losing this incredible number that helped me a lot to keep my effort going on. It is something I got attached and had me visiting Duolingo every single day. It means nothing, but at the same time was very helpful for me, and probably others. Now losing it brings a bad thing: I'm no longer attached to something... It made me lose that spirit of learning every day. That's bad, and I shouldn't feel like that just because of a number. I should be happy for all the learning I got. Still, I can't get rid of this sadness this morning losing this rubbish thing that got back showing "1".

Because, for some of us, this rubbish number is what keep us going on learning (and I believe you also think like that, otherwise you wouldn't have added this feature to your teaching method), I would like to present you an alternative to keep us practicing in cases like mine above: Instead of bringing the count to zero again (the worst penalty), why not only remove some days? Why not penalize with a few days removed, or a percentage of loss? That way, if someone miss a strike, they don't get penalized so badly and the spirit of learning every day might keep going on - the recovery is less painful. What do you think? Good idea, bad idea? Hope this message reach you guys.

2 years ago

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/michikade

While the streak is in indicator of how many days in a row one has met their goal, and I don't necessarily feel that it should be changed, I do feel that on our profile perhaps there should be something along the lines of "Maximum Streak Achieved" to show the longest streak a person has had and "Total Days Practiced" to show the total number of days a person has practiced whether they have a streak or not (like if someone can only practice twice a week or something but practices twice a week for a year they'll have a total days practiced at 104, that sort of thing).

I think this would help those who need the extra motivation in this way.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/northernguy
northernguy
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Excellent suggestion.

I lost a fair sized streak some time ago. Not sure how it could have happened. I hadn't purchased streak protection because I faithfully practiced every day. At the time, I attributed the loss to some error on Duo's part. On reflection, I wonder if my irregular hours caused my sequential daily practice to show up as practicing twice in the same twenty four period by Duo's calendar. Practicing at one in the morning by my clock because I know the next day I will be too busy might be seen as just another practice after the one fourteen hours before. I think it is now the next day but Duo does not.

At any rate, while the streak number is meaningless, when it gets big enough you can't help but pay attention. For inadvertent streak loss, total number of days practiced would retain some of the motivating factor.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/10Kitties

I would love to see the "Maximum Streak Achieved" show up. My husband lost an over 600 day streak because he was working very long hours. He is working on another one, but he was really disappointed when it happened.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Carolyn250

This is a great suggestion, and has been asked for a number of times. The folks at Duo. either aren't listening, or it is too difficult to program. But I agree, if I were to lose my streak my motivation to use Duo. might not stop, but my motivation to make a daily visit might.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/yangluphil
yangluphil
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Best small suggestion I've seen in a while.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/writchie4
writchie4
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This discussion pops up fairly often when someone loses a long streak. Here's a recent thread that generated a fair amount of suggestions.

Unfortunately, I think a big flaw with suggestions like "only remove some days" is that they remove/diminish the primary motivator for keeping your streak in the first place. The fact that a massive drop exists is exactly the reason why the streak is so motivating. Without it, there's less harm in skipping day(s).

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katriik
katriik
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Writchie4, you are looking at the "motivator" when you keep the streak. However, you must also look at the other way: when you lose everything, as it is demotivating. As I said in my original post, it is a rubbish thing, but it was my motivator. Now I don't have it anymore. I believe that there should have a middle term, so Doulingo could keep this motivation for everyone. My wife and I were on the same streak. When I told here this morning that I've lost it, she got shocked. Believe it or not, it also impacted her. It is a loss (rubbish again, compared to what I got back) and I should not feel like that for this kind of stuff. Duolingo should find a way to always keep its user cheered up.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/writchie4
writchie4
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You're right, I am looking at the motivation rather than the demotivation. That's intentional, as I think it's more important (I went more in depth about this in the thread I linked to previously, if you're curious why).

If the site was to make a change to the way streaks are affected after a missed day, I worry that it'd be removing the positive aspects of the streak as well (throwing out the baby with the bathwater, if you will). I do agree that it's a stark change from "long streak" to "nothing" though, and I'd be ok with something attached to your account to recognize your longest historical streak. I just don't want to see the "motivator" diminished alongside the "demotivator".

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katriik
katriik
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I read the post you linked (by the way, the frozen steak part is funny). I don't know if you already lost a big streak (since you have 790 days), and maybe you might not know the feeling and demotivation it causes. That's why there should be a middle term. Someone gave the idea of a leaking bucket and I believe it is a great one. With the difference that the more you fill it, the worst the leaking becomes: stay away 3 days from Duolingo with a 400 days streak and you'll see your streak down back to 100 days - bad? Sure, but not deadly. The XP idea is also a great option. As several people said on the other post, it is because of "humans being humans". We get attached to this, and it motivates us even when it shouldn't, when the idea behind this should be another thing. It worked, somehow. But it also brought some consequences - which I believe Duolingo should work on that. I always saw Duolingo as a "learning game". Why not add an option in the profile where you activate a "survival" mode - which would keep your idea working, while for others, it would be the normal mode (bucket idea) - and to go with what you said: add a star as a "status" indicator that you are on a survival mode. This way, we can have both solutions to satisfy both groups. What do you think?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lorel90
Lorel90
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Oh, I am so sorry. I understand you and I think you have presented some good ideas to DL, I hope they read them.

Someone here compared the streak to the ring of power (The Lord of the Rings), we like it so much that it controls us. I think I am done with German DL, but I cannot let it go, so I keep coming everyday. Do not get discouraged, you are here to learn and you can put some other goals such as to past B1 level test, to translate a whole document etc.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katriik
katriik
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You there, I like the way you think. LotR reference is pretty accurate hehehe. Well, I'll continue with my Spanish classes, especially because I'm surrounded by people who speaks Spanish here at work.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KathyMeador

I lost a long streak myself when we lost Internet. Maybe a 10% loss would be better. I felt exactly as you did.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/iWayne1

I feel you man. It really sucks to lose a streak like that. I think what you suggested makes a lot of sense. I made another suggestion to Duo team to possibly consider longer streak freeze options. That way, if you know that you'll be on a cruise for a week and there will probably no internet or will be but costing you arms and legs, you can purchase the streak freeze for 7 days and no need to worry about it.

I do believe Duo should consider more options for people to keep their streak.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hyllning

Ah. I'm sorry about your streak loss, I've lost a long streak myself once. I don't know if Duolingo would actually do anything to help with streaks, other than pre-bought streak freezes. It's up to them.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Pawsycuddles

Wow, and I got upset about loosing my 7 day streak. Must be such a bummer for you, mate. Have some Lingots :)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Pawsycuddles

By 'some' I mean 'all the Lingots I have' ahah

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lindaljc
lindaljc
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I know exactly how you feel, as I had a similar loss recently of over 700 streak! I too, do not expect it back, but it would be really nice if your maximum streak could be shown in your profile, just to prove I'd been there once and encourage me to get back there. I like your idea of a percentage loss too. Keep on going!!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/gingerninja3148

Sorry to hear about that. You should be proud of yourself for achieving such a high streak though! I have a relatively high streak myself and in two weeks I am going overseas for 10 days. Fortunately my teachers are forcing me to do schoolwork overseas which requires the internet so I will just force my parents to ensure I have Wi-Fi everyday so I can do some Duolingo. Had you bought a streak freeze? I would recommend always having one to make sure that you never lose your streak because of a mishap one day. I do think something should be done about preserving streaks or showing your highest or something. Going down to zero would just be too demotivating.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/lindaljc
lindaljc
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I did have a streak freeze, but had not realised it had been used the day before! All my own fault, as it was an unusual week and I simply forgot; first time in over two years, but that's life! I would love to have a record somewhere of what I had achieved, but I'm keeping going! Good luck with your trip!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/timothyhansen
timothyhansen
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Maybe for streaks above 365, an additional day is automatically added to streak freeze. For streaks above 730, two additional days. I have used streak freeze only once, but there should be some sort of penalty (in addition to the lingot cost) for repeatedly using streak freeze. One could potentially take every other day off until the lingots ran out, and keep the streak. That doesn't seem to be in keeping with the spirit of the game.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/CosmoKaiza
CosmoKaiza
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Why not starting a new language ? A whole new adventure ? You will feel motivated again and you will be able to find the joy of learning again

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/katriik
katriik
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KozmoW, I'll definitively continue to do the classes. It is just the feeling that is (or was) not joyful at all. It was a... disappointment(!?) but let's keep it up. =)

2 years ago