Mods are now monitoring XP Competitions for scripting.
We've had some cheaters sneaking into (or hosting) XP competitions lately. And, that's not really fair to those who are creating and joining these competitions with fair intentions.
Some mods started randomly monitoring competitions in August. And since then, staff have taken action on somewhere around 10 accounts that were using scripting to cheat. I'm letting you know now to try and discourage anyone else from doing this. I also want to reassure the community that we are taking action to clear up this sort of behavior. (Even if you're scripting only outside of XP Contests, it will lead to an account ban. The Community Guidelines are explicit that scripting is prohibited.)
When the mods select an XP competition, we check the account of every user involved, including: the hosts, every participant, and all people commenting in that discussion even if they don't join the competition.
In addition, life is short, do you want to use your time to learn a language? Or to redo Basics 1 thirty times every day when you already know it? (We see those of you doing it to get it to stick and that's ok; but we also see those of you who are doing it just for the XP :P) The big picture isn't to win an XP competition by doing something mindless with the limited amount of time you have on Earth. Learning a language is worthwhile. Imagine that you come across an emergency and everyone else only spoke the language you've signed up for on Duolingo: You spent 5 hours last week going through lessons competing in an XP competition. Are the lessons you learned going to help you save a life? OR, did you waste all of that time just repeating Basics 1?
When we compete, let's do it for something meaningful! ^_^
Thank you for shedding some light on this, Usagi.
Cheaters/hackers really get on my nerves. If you join an XP competition, and you're just doing Basics 1 to get the prize of 1000 lingots, why even join the XP competition at all? You may as well just hack into Duolingo to get that 1000 lingots.
In this context, using an automated process to earn XP, instead of actually doing the lessons.
Although you could just do Basic 1 manually as well, over and over again, which is equally ridiculous.
[There are valid uses for scripts, in other contexts, such as adding functionality, or displaying extra information etc., where the learning experience is being enhanced not replaced]
It's basically hacking, to make it short.
So, you pretty much change the values inside of Duolingo so you could get 100's of XP in a flash. I've seen other stuff happen, like there once was this one person who got to level one, like, 20 times, then level two 20 times, yadda yadda yadda...
Dear Qiunnn, your question is not stupid in any way.
However - I am not sure I am about to answer it in an appropriate way.
Please, I hope, that you will intend to follow the intention of Duolingo than seek to follow the ways that some people follow. To cheat themselves, and cheat their community.
We are here to provide quality language learning at no cost to the learner. And the way you choose to behave, it does say everything about you.
And for those that behave in an inappropriate way ... it does say enough about them.
There are many ways to go against a rule. This concept of scripting is one way to cheat the "system" that is designed and provided through the good will of so many people to assist language learning.
This post is also about indicating we are aware of this issue. And we are locating what is happening.
Thank you Quinnn for being a valued learner of languages in our community.
Woah, I hope that that will discourage people from scripting.
I also remember that I used to be in a club with this guy who, to get XP, would just to basics 1 over and over again. I also suspect they might have been scripting, because they gained a high amount of XP in a short amount of time, but maybe not. I also held an XP contest with them and they won.