Why lingots suddenly mean more to me
People constantly complain that lingots are useless. Due to recent events I disagree. Perfectly good posts seem to get down-voted these days. Even something like the excellent Latin lessons provided by carpelanam have been down-voted during the last few months. I have been the victim of down-voters myself. Most recently my Duo goes to the United States post received dozens of down-votes in a matter of minutes.
The usual advice is to ignore this: the down-voters will get bored and move on. Unfortunately this has been going on for 3 months now. Clearly these people have decided to make down-voting on daily basis a regular feature in their Duolingo lives. Down-voting en masse has three unfortunate consequences. First the staff does not see what is genuinely popular. Second posts that get many down-votes disappear from the stream. Third and most importantly the poster may think that his or her output is not appreciated. This happened to me too since I was not initially aware of what was happening.
So give lingots to posts you like. I now no longer just up-vote a post I like but always give a lingot as well. This way the poster knows that there is someone who appreciates the time and effort they put into making the post. Previously I did not really understand what lingots are for but during the last few days I have been very happy that they exist. After all you cannot take away a lingot once it has been given to someone. This does not fix the first two problems caused by down-voting but it does help with the third one. So give people lingots just for behaving like a decent human being. Like this:
Thank you all for making Duolingo such a great place. :)
Very good suggestion! The down-vote button is kind of a double edged sword as it helps getting rid of spam in the forums quickly but it does tend to get abused a lot as well :(
This is all well and good, except that if people use exploits to obtain lingots it doesn't solve anything. The same people will work it out, I'm sure. I have watched down-votes come as brief showers of rain; all that is really needed to counter them in the vast majority of cases is merely up-votes used properly. In all the threads you mention, the temporary reign of the down-vote fairy has been defeated by this means. We always outnumber the trolls a-thousand-to-one.
Lately, I have seen many many discussions that just say something like "hi" or "I'm new and duo is such a great place". Naturally, I downvote these as, after 5 downvotes, a post will become hidden. I am not doing this out of spite or because I am bored or anything but to help clear out spam from the discussion forum. I like your idea, but most users already have hundreds of lingots and a few more will not be much of an incentive at all.
Wonderful post, Mari! :) I totally agree with you. This always helps the poster to realize that their contributions are necessary for the successful running of the forums. I had also come across many posts that have been downvoted even though they were really helpful. So, I always follow the helpful ones so that I can always read them.
I also hope that a lot of Duo-users read this post by you and understand the need for giving lingots to helpful posts. Also, thanks for your suggestion for I will now give lingots to the posts which are really helpful :))
I also have been the victim of downvoting, and it's really frustrating when there are so many spam posts that get upvoted, yet you post a genuinely good post that has something to do with language learning and you're the one that gets the downvotes. I personally think they should get rid of the downvote button because of this: yes, it does help with spam, but it also can be used to bully others. I don't have an answer to stop people from downvoting genuinely good posts, but I do like your suggestion.