Lingots? Whats the point?
Okay, I have been thinking lately why i have been wanting to get more lingots, and its pretty clear that unless Duolingo gets more things for the lingot store, its pretty useless, don't you think?
People beg for lingots but know I think "Ya, you do get lingots sometimes but what is the point? Your wasting your time when you can go out and earn some faster but you can't really spend them on a lot! That is unless you want to do a million quizzes."
So if Duolingo were to add more things what do you think they should add? And if they keep ignoring it do you guys think its pointless?
Remember to up vote if you like!
WAY BACK in the olden days, I was thinking of opening my own Duolingo store, where you could get your own little Duolingo avatar, like this:
So much was going on, so I didn't form it.
Personalized Duo Owl :D You can choose your own colors, and a robotic or modern bird :P
Someone knowledgeable once said that a complex User Script could be developed to create add-ons to the lingot store. What the extras would be and how much they would cost would be completely up to the maker of the script. Also, I believe that it would have to be set up to where all the lingots that are used to purchase these 'extras' would be funneled into a single host account. This means that over time this one account would accumulate thousands or potentially millions of lingots.
Finally, if you turned the user script off for whatever reason, you would lose all the 'extras' (at least until you turned the script back on). Sometimes I do that accidentally with my Duolingo Course Changer script, and then I turn it back on and laugh as I realize once again how much easier my life is now that I have that script.
FWIW, here are four ideas:
TUTORING I don't know how popular this would be, but maybe duolingo could partner with a reputable firm/company/organization (preferably more than one) that offers quality online tutoring (e.g. via Skype) and you could use your lingots to buy time with a tutor of your choice. This would be a win-win deal because a duolingo user would get free tutoring and the company and/or tutor would receive exposure. However, if there's already something out there that's providing such a service for free, I don't know what incentive anyone would have to spend their lingots. A quick search of the web tells me that if there is such thing as free tutoring out there, it’s kind of hit and miss on what will be taught and where. So, I definitely think this is an area duolingo could move into assuming enough interest exists on the duolingo side. The one that stands out in my mind the most is this one called Verbal Planet, which someone brought my attention to some time ago. This company seems as if it would be open to such an idea.
APPS Other than that, my ideas have some hurdles in them. For example, the lingot store could offer apps (ones you actually have to pay for, not the free ones) in exchange for advertising space at the lingot store. Many apps are free because developers want you to sample their wares and get addicted to their app, but many also offer more premium service. Duolingo users could exchange lingots for a code that enables them to experience more of what an app has to offer. The code wouldn’t even have to be a lifetime code, it could last for a month or a year or whatever satisfies the developer. App developers could also limit their offer to a certain number, distributing codes for this premium service on a first come/first serve basis. When depleted, the lingot store could swap it out for another app in the queue (either from that same developer or another).
DUOLINGO MERCHANDISE I don’t know if Duolingo has an advertising budget, but it could spend some of it on exchanging duolingo merchandise for lingots. Who wouldn’t love to have a duolingo mug or tee-shirt!
OTHER MERCHANDISE/CHARITABLE GIVING Somebody posted something about using lingots to buy additional games that could be played. I like that idea, but think it could commercialized as well. Maybe someone could develop some sort of treasure hunt / adventure race game and users score points by traveling through various settings scoring points for answering questions in a foreign language along the way … with individual and team playing options. You could fill such a game with tons of various product placements (e.g, Volkswagen, BMW, and Lufthansa; Bennetton, Gucci, and Prada; L’Oreal, Yoplait, and Chanel; Coca Cola, McDonald’s, and Starbucks; and so many others). And if nobody wanted to take quite such a commercial route, you could do something similar for smaller, local populations (e.g., local, indigenous coffee farms, coconut plantations, hand crafted clothing and jewelry artisans from around the world). Here again, the business model would be, in effect, free advertising/increased exposure in exchange for a sampling of wares (that duolingo users could purchase with lingots). You could even extend this to philanthropy. For example, a certain, predetermined number of lingots could be exchanged for a donation to a charitable organization of your choice. Duolingo could make arrangements with reputable national and international organizations that would be a good fit for duolingo. I don't know much about social media platforms and how the tax code applies to them, if at all, but perhaps this could even be written off as a deduction.
That's all I've got for you right now. Thanks for posting the question. I hope you get a lot of unique and interesting replies to it.
After posting, I learned that many free services that enable one to speak with others are available. I don't know that they are exactly the same thing as quality tutoring, but in a world of dwindling resources, namely money, the first idea presented might be a bit of a hard sell (unless you could convince language learners that the tutoring was immensely superior to what could be obtained from some of these free alternatives). I've seen them referred to in various threads throughout duolingo, but have never personally checked them out, but while reading the article
and seeing several of them listed, I felt obligated to add them to this thread here. They are:
Actually, of the ones you see above, the only one I've seen mentioned in duolingo threads is iTalki, but, as you can see, you have many to choose from. While a certified/bonafide teacher/tutor may give you some sort of guarantee that you won't be wasting your time, you don't really need to have a pedigree of certification to teach someone else your language. Your pedigree is having spoken the language all your life!