Duolingo is the most popular way to learn languages in the world. Best of all, it's 100% free!

https://www.duolingo.com/HelpfulDuo

Up- and downvoting limits

HelpfulDuo
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Hi all!

We are currently experimenting with new and improved spam-prevention tools. Please pardon our dust as we tweak and test ways to improve the Forum for everyone.

Our goal is to prevent excessive spam actions, so most users should not even notice these tools in action. In fact, we have been testing various limiting tools for a while, but due to recent site issues, users have unintentionally triggered limits. (So you should not worry if this is the first you're experiencing it yourself, just hold off on voting for a bit and all will be back to normal shortly.)

Thanks for your cooperation, and let us know if you notice any issues or benefits from this

1 year ago

96 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/NtateNarin
NtateNarin
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Thanks for the heads up HelpfulDuo! While I don't really like having a limit on my up and downvotes as I frequent the forums regularly, I'm glad Duolingo is experimenting with different ideas. LOL, I want to upvote your post, but I'm afraid I'm close to my limit of upvoting! :-D

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Talca
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Are you listening, Duolingo staff? Please bring back the personal (though public) messaging activity. Losing the ability to communicate with Spanish-speaking users is a serious negative to your excellent program. Gracias!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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I think they don't care ^^

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/wombatua
wombatua
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Okay... given that on a weekday I probably downvote upwards of fifty times during the day to help remove the crap that bored schoolkids post, when should I start doing so again? And, for heaven's sake, why are you folks limiting ME? You need to limit the spammers.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EnglishTutorJay
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Music to my ears!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Usagiboy7
Usagiboy7
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Please implement split system email verification: No verification required to take the course. However, if someone wants to comment or vote, require them to verify their email. This would go a long way towards reducing spam and harassment on Duolingo.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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Another very bad decision/feature in my opinion. And you have NO notifications.

In my case: I often spend a lot of time to clean sentence forums. Very few people do that, and more people should do it. I downvote all the spams on the forum, I downvote bad answers, and I upvote and give a lingot to the good answer on each forum I visit. So Duolingo prevents me to do that now. I gave more than 500 lingots for all the good or helping answers I've found, downvoting the bad ones or the ones where I think there are some mistakes and that can confuse learners.

So I will give up, and other people who do that will give up too, and forum will be even more messy than they are. Not really clever Duolingo! People who try to help are just prevented to do anything.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BelgianStr
BelgianStr
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Have you reached your limit? How many votes is the limit(I wonder)?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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Yes, I reached my limit yesterday, and now I cannot downvote either. I used my downvotes to downvote messages like "Lpppjkj", "sgggeggx", and bad answers like someone suggesting that we have to use "is" with "you", as "you" is singular. (just to give you an example of downvote), I also use the downvotes to express my opinion on the general forum thread, but it's relatively scarce.

I don't know what is the limit, as it's badly implemented (maybe as a test only), with no notifications. And it's a part of the problem. You don't know how many downvotes you have and how long you have to wait.

You didn't reply to my previous questions: do you use the sentences forum a lot? Do you ask grammar questions? And if you do, how do you know the answer is trustworthy, or if it's a random answer? It's interesting to know. Do you ignore downvotes to trust a question? Did you have problem with some users downvoting your posts/questions/answers in an unfair way?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DonFiore
DonFiore
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I haven't been able to downvote anything since the test started four days ago. I mentioned earlier how I probably used all my weekly downvotes before realizing what the problem was and have since been trying a couple of times a day which is not helping. I highly suggest the staff to A) get rid of this, or failing that B) show a message saying I have reached my limit. On another site I used to visit, there was a message every time I downvoted saying "You have X downvotes remaining". Here, no indication what so ever. This post will get buried in a couple of days and all the newcomers will be left bewildered why they can't downvote anymore.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I loved your previous comment (I can't reply on it) It's exactly what I think! I'm sure that the next step is to remove the sentence forum. So, I tell you, this site will become totally useless, with no help, and no grammar insight.

Same thing for me, I cannot downvote since yesterday, it will be more than 24 hour, so I'm punished for spams, even if I try to clean them, they punished me, not spammers!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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just hold off on voting for a bit and all will be back to normal shortly.

Shortly as in hours? days? weeks?

For me it's seems to be at best in days (more than 3)....

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I didn't get back my downvote "power" since yesterday. So it seems to be 24 hours or more.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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I'm not clicking on any up-down-vote button for the next few days.
I'll see after that abstinence if downvote right comes back (but I fear that if I try "too soon" it restart the count-down so better to wait "too much").


Update (24/05/2017): I was able to downvote today.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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That's really not fair, to be "punished" to try "too soon". I really feel punished, like a bad girl.

Something like this: Oh you did something very bad, you downvoted bad answers or spams, now you have to endure your punishment.

I cannot understand the voting limit being also for moderators!

Will people stay when Duolingo will remove the sentence forum (as I'm sure it's their intention)? The site will be totally useless. Duolingo should close it now, and re-open another site, it would be better.

No more advanced learning (immersion), no more abilities to communicate in any mean (messaging or/and activities), no mean to see good answers, and sentence forum soon closed I guess. Is this site still useful? Bad prognosis were right.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
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In reaction to the update: I decided to test whether I could also downvote today, and I could, at least 50 times (I did have to dig quite deep to find that many downvoteworthy messages across the different fora...).

I find this very interesting, especially since I lost my ability to downvote later than jrikhal did, so there doesn't seem to be a standard waiting time in place before one is "let back in from the doghouse".

Or could it be that the experiment is already over? Is someone else currently unable to downvote?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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it seems it's simply "over", cf This Lui's comment. ;)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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See new Luis' comment in the same discussion: staff seems to plan to go in the "good" (IMO) direction on that!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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Yay, hope!! B-)

Also, it's good to see Luis weighing in on discussions created by users, like he used to do way back in the beginning of things.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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Or could it be that the experiment is already over?

That (but... "trop beau pour être vrai") or they changed the threshold and, hence, "manually reseted" all counters.
Let's cross fingers.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
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"trop beau pour être vrai"

True, that guess was uncharacteristically optimistic of me! :-p

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KenBookmye

Yes, since I can't downvote I have stopped upvoting and commenting it's given me another half hour to watch Netflix in German. Thank you for making that time available

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BelgianStr
BelgianStr
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How many downvotes per day were you giving to the community?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
Aria487
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It doesn't sound very wise to me to -ultimately- limit all people's number of votes instead of preventing extra accounts from being created, using e.g. IP observation and email verification. Or you can limit voting if it's occurring at a high frequency. I hope you're not planning to restrict our votes number.

Major edit: I've thought of a similar solution, that "a user would need to spend min. 10 minutes on the web to unlock their voting ability for that day." It might help you with further experiments.

(Several edits in the first five minutes)
(Minor edit, two times)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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I totally agree(*) and the real issue on troll-voting is far more the multiple accounts.

(*) in particular on email verification to be able to post and vote on forums, and keeping no mail verification to follow courses

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lrtward
Lrtward
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I couldn't agree more.

  • I fully support Duolingo's desire to bring language learning to everyone, for free.
  • I also appreciate that not everyone in the world has an email account (though to be honest I'm not sure how a person can have access to Duolingo but NOT have access to Gmail, Yahoo!, or similar).
  • And I realize that there's nothing preventing a bored person from creating multiple throwaway email accounts to go with their throwaway Duolingo accounts that they use for spamming, trolling, and spam voting. But it's one hurdle for them to jump over and it should slow them down some.
1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
Aria487
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Just a little note on how someone could access Duolingo but not an email provider: Some of my friends' guardians keep them under observation, and protection. This limited access certainly can occur, either from the ISP (a block list for kids, and it can also include social sites), the router (newer routers have a manual block feature), or the system. (a browser plugin, or a parental control software, both can have a "Social sites" category)

Anyway, it still doesn't say it's exactly an obstacle for those people to join where email verification is required. The parents can open an email account for them on another system, verify the account, then leave the address.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lrtward
Lrtward
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I admit I had not considered the cases where a parent or guardian might permit their charge to access Duolingo but not email. But in this type of situation wouldn't it be a good thing for the minor to have access to the lessons but NOT the social features?

And, as you say, the guardian can easily create an email account that their charge knows nothing about.

That was a good point, Aria - thank you!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
Aria487
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As hughcparker's comment was more clear on your first point, can you read my reply just below? Also, it occurred to me that I haven't thanked you people lately. Thank you, for one.

And you're welcome!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hughcparker
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The Duolingo for Schools system is designed for circumstances exactly like this. A parent can create a classroom for their kids, and create accounts for them without them needing to have an email address.

If that parent later decides to allow their kids access to the forums, all they would have to do is change the setting in their classroom to allow it. The kids could then easily add their email address to their settings, and verify it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hughcparker
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@Aria487 - I'm not sure what more Duolingo can do to make people aware of its services. That's part of the purpose of the forums - people can ask such questions, and people like you and me can tell them.

I still live in hope that the forums can be salvaged. I'm hoping that when Duolingo eventually accepts that there's a reason every other forum site requires email verification, when Duolingo introduces the much-needed off-topic forum that most forum sites have, when the vote-limiting experiment is subjected to some thought and re-tried, when the Duolingo forum is renamed, etc, it might yet be possible to make the forums a practical means of communication.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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@hughcparker in reply to @Aria487 - I'm not sure...:

Since about half a year ago, I've personally been hoping for a tour to introduce the functions of the site to new users. You, in particular, know how many times one question gets asked by different people, but if there was a tour or proper FAQ, well...

We share the same hope, and there's not just two of us.
Fortunately, the recent racket (from Immersion removal to Activity removal) was enough to have the staff divide the official posts between different members so they can make an appearance. It's a start for better communication. (Before that there was just vivisaurus and Luis in the forums, the others were practically inactive) I also get the impression that they respond to emails more quickly as well.

So, maybe, things are starting to go the right direction for a change. Let's keep hoping.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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Firstly, I wasn't aware of that; thank you.

Then, the friends that I mentioned to Lrtward are homeschooled, they don't get the day-to-day school contact with a lot of people. I think their parents were probably quick to assume Duolingo was a 100% safe environment; with schools using the platform on a large scale and the owl flying around. But it's never a hundred percent, is it? (How much should moderators handle? How much they can handle?)

Even if my previous point is entirely irrelevant, one may still argue Duolingo isn't doing the best job out of making people aware of the existence of Duolingo Schools, or spreading the fact that students' access can be limited. Even the name, "Duolingo for Schools" can be misleading.

I'm not saying it's anyone's fault, just thinking out loud. The parents should check the platform further as much as Duolingo should do a better job of acquainting people with the whole system.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KohlMaverick
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@jrikhal

Can't directly reply to your reply below** but I never considered the secondary language test out, good thinking! I like the idea of the new experience points requirement.

** wider discussion column/more replies/user mention notifications... just a thought Duolingo *nudge nudge* ;) <3
1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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IP verification Jrikhal. I know some people can use proxies, but it's easy to see which IP are proxy in general I think. Why IP ban exists on many sites and not here? I don't understand why. Of course, there will be disadvantages to this, that is obvious, but spam is a real problem. People who come here only to troll should be banned. It will remove a lot of young trolls who only create multiple accounts, and upvotes their own spam.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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Why IP ban exists on many sites and not here?

For whatever the reason, Duolingo unfortunately doesn't want to implement that. Only them know why and it's unlikely will really know exactly why.
That's why I didn't mention IP verification here (I already suggested several times to staff, as others did too): I prefer to "swim partially with the current rather than totally against it".

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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I suspect there might be a spam-voter in this discussion. As the OP is Duo, I invite him to inspect the votes to see if it's so, and to (possibly) realize how outrageously ridiculous it is to be unfairly downvoted, and on an Admin's post! We'd all be grateful to have this solved, preferably using a popular solution.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DonFiore
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There is. You went from 7 to 3 earlier and now I went from 10 to 5, both in a couple of minutes.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jimnicholson
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Probably because Aria487 proposed a solution that actually worried the spam voters: earning forum rights through daily XP. Duolingo should pay attention to that.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
Aria487
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Actually, my proposal was earning unlimited voting ability after a daily 10-minute delay. But we're on the same side here, and, in fact, thanks for re-mentioning it! (As it's an "edit" and the staff didn't get an email with the final version)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jimnicholson
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Yes, sorry - I wasn't trying to misquote you ... more trying to identify the general principle that the vote-spammers would be reacting to. Anything that makes them jump through a lot more hoops (but doesn't impact regular users too much) would be good. In fact regular users would normally be doing the 10 minutes anyway. So I definitely support your idea, so much so, that I think it should be extended to many other forum actions.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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@jimnicholson in reply to "Yes, sorry - I wasn't...":

Sorry? What for? A mere mistake?! You, for one, shouldn't apologize. I appreciate your comments, and couldn't put it better than "jump through a lot more hoops" myself, alongside the rest of it.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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Thanks for noticing. I think I got about enough downvotes to take me down from the top. You were also targeted, as well as piguy3 and jrikhal. What all the mentioned comments have in common is, they substantially want spam-voters out. I believe the staff should read the mentioned comments again.
(And some meaningful comments arrived later, such as El2theK's, and they weren't downvoted as far as I know.)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I also noticed the mass downvote in a few minutes. I had this on an innocent question right after asking it in a new post. I understand my question could be downvoted, but the thing I don't understand is the question being massively downvoted as soon as I asked it.

Is it possible someone made a script, a downvote robot or something? That's suspicious. How they do it?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DonFiore
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I probably used all my weekly downvotes trying multiple times to downvote some spam before I realised it wasn't just my Internet connection or something. I don't know what the limit is but what you're essentially doing here is punishing those who use the forums a lot. 10 upvotes and 5 downvotes (or whatever) is probably enough if you spend 5 minutes on the forums but not for an hour of browsing. Yes, some of us have free time and since you're discouraging binge-learning... Like Aria said, this is not preventing spam, this is encouraging trolls to use multiple (unverified) accounts while the rest of us have a more difficult time fighting against during school hours.

TL;DR: Have a downvote, even if it doesn't work and prevents me from voting whenever my next chance would have been.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Zerr_
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let us know if you notice any issues or benefits from this

A suggestion: why not just require email verification?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jimnicholson
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Not sure if this is still a thing, but in the past I have seen people claim that shadow-banned accounts can still vote.

If still the case, then some individuals, who have built up a nice little collection of shadow-banned accounts, might use them to spam-vote.

So, if it hasn't already, I think the ability to vote should be disabled from accounts, while they are shadow-banned.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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Anyone got an idea on why did HelpfulDuo get deactivated? It's hard to find out it's an official announcement this way, from the outside.

(Posted on 2017/05/22 , 4:34 PM Tehran Time, UTC+4:30)

(minor edit, added "from the outside")

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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Anyone got an idea on why did HelpfulDuo get deactivated?

Oh gosh.... What is this, the beginning of the end?!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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Not to panic this quickly, this might be just, for example, Luis put Duo under a "One account at a time" solution, and Duo needed to deactivate this account to go spam-vote with his other accounts :-/ Okay, that didn't come out as positive as I hoped it would... Still, it's good news to see there will a such restriction! :D

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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I agree with your previous suggestion (I can't comment directly it):

The tour for new user is very poor. A lot of functions are ignored from users, and are discovered only by chance.

I was thinking to make a fun and interactive tour for new users, do you want to work on this with me? I will require some work, and help from moderators who know better than we do the functionalities.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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Just to avoid clutter, you're very welcome. It's a happy day when you correct someone and get a thanks and a French tip in return :D

About the other thing, I'd be happy to help however I can! Although I must admit, I'm not to optimistic about the good it will do if it's from users' side. Feel free to contact with ideas, but preferably not here, the discussion's cluttered as it is.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I've made a forum for this purpose. It's not really a forum, it's only to be able to send messages on another pages, as we don't have this possibility anymore. You can let me messages here: http://duolingofans.forumforall.com/

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
Aria487
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Not a very big problem, but the font colors make me prefer to chat someone else, preferably Duolingo itself. If you're on the new code, I can message you and send you the links for the event via an edit in this comment.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I've just created, but didn't choose the appearance yet, it's the default one, we can change the color, that's not a real forum, only a link to chat. Sorry, I didn't understand "on the new code" and the rest. Which event?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Thank you, my message above has an "edit" to correct.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Midnightwards666

Will it make spam threads harder to fight if we have downvote limits though?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/QuadraticLingual

No offense, but I really don't like this decision. I can't help but feel it will only lead to increased spam.

Also, it doesn't really fix anything, it's more like pouring battery acid on an open wound. It only makes it worse.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tiramisues
tiramisues
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I thought I was helping Duolingo getting rid of the spam posts by downvoting. Instead apparently I am the spammer and I am not allowed to downvote people talking in capslock about hacking duolingo. Yep, sounds logical to me. It's only trumped by the fact that the downvoting ability also got taken away from moderators. That's just ridiculous!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Usagiboy7
Usagiboy7
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It doesn't sound like it's permanent. The goal is to figure out how to stop people from abusing the feature. So, they are tinkering.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hughcparker
hughcparker
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This isn't Duolingo's finest moment, though. It's really hard to believe that anyone thought about this one carefully before doing it. As the comments on this thread have shown, there are obvious and fundamental flaws with this approach, and several obviously better solutions.

Tinkering is fine, but tinkering works better when it's properly thought through.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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Looks (to me)

  1. (unfortunately) potentially permanent
  2. not starting by testing the change that is most likely to stop abuse of that feature.
    Several of the suggestions made in comments here are far more likely to reduce abuse of that feature.
1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Usagiboy7
Usagiboy7
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> 1. (unfortunately) potentially permanent

Loss of voting or limits on voting? I was referring to complete loss of voting. As, some general users have experienced a complete loss of voting at the moment.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal
jrikhal
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AFAIK, there is no complete loss currently.
Just a limitation on voting where the limitation is "if you reach a threshold, you'll not be able to vote fro X days (and any attempt to vote restart the "X days" counter).
This "limitation" seems to be what staff is "testing".

In this sense, it's potentially permanent (= if they're convinced by their test then this "rule" will be permanent).

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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This decision will be even more spam, because no mean for people who try to clean up spams to do whatever. Duolingo takes all decision now to ruin itself. I just imagine how the forum will be when the spams or the confusing answers won't be hidden or flagged by downvotes. I think Duolingo tries to remove the forums by killing them.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/az_p
az_p
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Well, at least knowledge of this change frees me of the self-imposed burden of voluntarily helping to clean up the forums by down-voting the unhelpful comments...

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
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When you say "hold off on voting for a bit," do you mean downvoting AND upvoting? Or just being patient about testing whether we've gotten our ability to downvote back?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kansokusha
Kansokusha
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You mean, our ability to Upvote, right?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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I, as well as many I think, have lost the ability to downvote (i.e. downvote eficaciously; apparently these non-functional hits of the button are being tallied and used to extend the block) but can still upvote.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kansokusha
Kansokusha
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Oh, now I understand. I wasn't understanding that about the limit because I don't usually downvote anything. xP

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
PERCE_NEIGE
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I think you should downvote when you see an irrelevant post. (Insults, spams, "hi" message), It's a kind of "civic duty" here I think. It helps moderators because if users don't do this job, all the job will go to moderators only, and Duo will have to hire hundreds of them to keep the place clean. On Duolingo, we are all little moderators, and real moderators normally have the higher level moderating tools.

EDIT: thank you Aria. The mistake comes from my own langage "engager" in French can be for free. As you can be "engagé" in a humanitarian association. So I wouldn't mean they are paid. I understand than in English hire = money. "Enrolled" is maybe a better translation.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
annika_a
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Wholehearted agreement here with the whole civic duty thing!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Aria487
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One "little" mistake I can't refuse to correct, sorry: Duolingo doesn't "hire" moderators, the folks we see are volunteers.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kansokusha
Kansokusha
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Admin asks to hold off on voting for a bit
34 Upvotes

I just thought it was funny xd

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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It's more sad than funny, because it only concerns downvotes, not upvotes.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BelgianStr
BelgianStr
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For you and Lrtward and some others I hope this is a very temporary bug.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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For you too Belgian if you use this site, for all of us. But I don't think it's a bug. But thank you BelgianStr.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gerardd88
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I don't understand people who criticise this (and the previous A/B tests). This has been one of the biggest problems on the forum for a pretty long time and I'm very happy that it's finally being addressed. We all could have different ideas about how the solution should look like, but let's just appreciate the fact that something is being done about it. And that there's an announcement telling us about it so soon.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ignatznkrazy
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I think if people feel that this proposed solution will be ineffective, especially based on the experiences that they are having in the forums, they should certainly voice that.

Frankly, I agree with those who have pointed out that using multiple accounts to vote has a bigger effect than any single account voting.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Gerardd88
Gerardd88
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I agree. I think the comments voicing concerns are really important, as you say. And I agree with the point about the multiple accounts. But most of the comments I've read seemed as if it were another useless idea from the Duolingo staff — there were quite a few of such ideas recently and I was often among the ones who criticised them under such posts. But here I'm especially grateful that they see the problem and that some at least reasonable actions are being taken. It's mostly for balance in the comments :) Let's hope that they'll keep working on these solutions to eliminate this problem entirely.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Because it's a counter-productive decision. I understand what they try to do. But every people who are forum-cleaner will stop. You will see that their work in the shadow, is very useful when they'll stop.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/annika_a
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I've been following this discussion just out of interest, while feeling happy I can still vote messages up and down as I please. Until just now, when I suddenly lost the capability of downvoting. And I seriously can't stand reading the forums without so much as being able to contribute to hiding obvious spam/wrong advice/harassment/porn/etc.

So that's it for the forums for a while for me!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KohlMaverick
KohlMaverick
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You and me both. So discouraging :(

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Yes, forums will be abandoned, but maybe they plan to remove them.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Horako224

"There's an announcement telling us about it so soon"

Japanese flashbacks intensifies

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DonFiore
DonFiore
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And that there's an announcement telling us about it so soon

It's only been two days since the first report. That might be a record.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/TimmohB

I think Duolingo also needs email verification, for discussion rights at least. It's no effort to create a spam account now without verification.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/El2theK
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Thanks for your cooperation, and let us know if you notice any issues or benefits from this

I suggest you keep a close eye on the forums on Monday when schools are using Duolingo again. You will probably come across at least a few classes with people that don't really want to be on here. You probably can guess the result of that and you probably can also guess the effects of this new limit.

You want to prevent spam actions. I suggest you focus on those creating spam.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lrtward
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Yes! It gets to the point that we can't keep up with deleting them all and leaving messages explaining why. Moderation has become nothing but tossing out the trash. It should be more about helping, motivating, and providing support - but unfortunately, there's no time for that :(

EDIT: I realize that my comment sounds negative and complaining/whiney. I don't mean it to be that way. I do appreciate that staff are looking for was to make Duo better, and that they've listened to us regarding what we consider to be the big issues.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/El2theK
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Your comment is completely fair. At times it is just fighting the floods of spam, while at the same time it is expected of us to notify and inform everyone about why their behaviour is wrong and their posts have been removed.

In all realism, notifying takes time and during that time more spam is created. Plus on top of that the message system at the moment doesn't work because many people don't use a valid email address.

While some people abused the voting, it did help hiding a lot of the clutter. And as other people have mentioned. The ones that were abusing it before will keep abusing it through multiple accounts.

Perhaps staff should do the moderating for a week to see for themselves what the main issues are.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KohlMaverick
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I don't think it comes off as whiny so much as, well, realistic...
I'm not a mod and I can see that.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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I will take weeks or months to really notice the bad effects for the non-downvote of spams. And it will not possible to measure it in a scientist way.

And for non trustworthy answers not being downvoted, it won't be noticed, it will only misguide learners, and allow trolls to teach false things without being downvoted, they answer looking totally legit. If they don't solve this problem, that is even more serious than spam, it's the end of this site, because people comes here to receive guidance, not to be trolled, or misguided.

As any change, Duolingo showed us that they don't care about our feedback or the bad effects. When they removed immersion, a lot of users warned that advanced users will leave the site, and bring their precious guidance with them, and that Duolingo seemed to seek more kid users than adult ones now (replacing immersion by groups for instance), and that it will led to more and more spams. And who can say it wasn't true now?

Removing the activity thread, make users want to use the normal forum to chat, to say "hi", because there is no other place, that's a logical consequence!! So why they try to solve the logical consequences now?

I saw Livemocha to kill itself exactly the same way. There's no way to ask them to come back on their decision, they never did. It's part of a big plan, and they introduce changes one by one. The next one is for when we will be tired to protest about this one, like this one came when we were tired to protest about the messaging system being gone.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lrtward
Lrtward
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> just hold off on voting for a bit and all will be back to normal shortly.)

> let us know if you notice any issues or benefits from this

I haven't been able to down vote for at least a couple of days now. I can up vote all I want, though :)
How long should one hold off on voting for things to return to normal? I cannot down vote after several hours of being away from Duo (like, overnight while I sleep).

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/KohlMaverick
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This is also what I would like to know... there are some comments I've been eyeing up for a downvote for a couple days now... ;)

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SporadicAspirant

I ran out of votes trying to improve the quality of the order of sentences during an Italian lesson late in the tree (voting up good helpful sentences, voting down repeat comments of low help value which prevent the good comments from getting near the top). What happened:

  • I had no indication I was getting near the limit, the votes just stopped working.
  • Once I had reached the limit, I was not able to click some I had already voted on to regain votes (ugh).

So the comments on that sentence and two other sentences remain in what I consider a less than optimum order. My thoughts:

  • If I had known how many votes I had (or at least known when I was in the last 5) I could have used them more effectively.
  • If I could have reversed some votes to regain votes, I could have used them more effectively.
  • Should you consider: Are there any particular characteristics of accounts that spam-vote? For example, are the majority of them accounts with low language levels or short streaks? Do they tend to spam-vote on lessons late in the trees or more on the discussion boards? (I know, none of these will be perfect indicators.)
  • Can you cross reference single votes against how many accounts have voted on a particular comment/post in the past hour to decide if it should count against your total. (This would better target organised/multiple accounts spam-voting - for example, I am betting no-one had voted on the comments I voted on in the past hour. I realise this would also mean that people voting down spam and voting up interesting posts on the main forum would still be as affected as they are at the moment, as I am fairly sure this is where a lot of votes happen on the same posts at approximately the same time. But it would at least help to improve matters for those of us voting on which comments on sentences are helpful.)
  • Can I pay some lingots to get some votes back? ;-p

If I find I can't help improve the order of comments for days after this (as it seems some people are finding) it doesn't affect me (emotionally), but I always think I am doing you at Duolingo a favour (repaying the favour of free languages, for sure, in the only way I'm able) by trying to improve your forums. I don't see the data you do, so I don't know how this (the positive effect I hope I have) balances up against spam voters.

I genuinely do not want to press enter to post this, because I have made suggestions when it is none of my business how you choose to implement measures to control spam and improve the quality of your forums. But they are only my thoughts as I encounter this, not me telling you how to run things, so perhaps it's not so rude; anyway, you indicate this is not normal running and that normal running shall resume shortly, so perhaps all of what I have suggested is irrelevant. In which case, I warmly anticipate a return to being able to improve your discussion pages for you.

Kind regards.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Huskie5
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The thing is that now when ever i down vote a discussion it thinks that I'm the spammer for that discussion. So now i can't up vote/down vote any discussion now.

1 year ago