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Chat feature: A note from a critic

Most people hate the removal of the chat feature. But lets give Duolingo a fair chance.

Pros of having the chat feature removed:

  • Doesn't spam up your profile with long discussions
  • Loads your profile faster
  • Takes away the bad or weird things posted on your profile
  • Provides room for other cool stuff


  • Many people liked having that feature
  • More spam on the forums
  • Lessens the value of having friends on Duolingo
  • Users who need to contact a moderator for help cannot do so directly, so they either make a new post about it, or find a post that the moderator created or commented on, and ask what they want through a reply irrelevant to the post topic, cluttering the forum in both cases.
  • People can communicate privately about something they want to be fixed

I know this might be a little bit late, but better late then never! Let the down voting begin!

November 16, 2017



Pros: No more creepy stalking and threats by bored (or malign) trolls.


The block button was for that purpose.


That is definitely true! I had a few people that would do that to me...


Cons: users who need to contact a moderator for help cannot do so directly, so they either make a new post about it, or find a post that the moderator created or commented on, and ask what they want through a reply irrelevant to the post topic, cluttering the forum in both cases.


Awesome man! I added that!


What's your source for "most people"? Do you have valid statistics, or are you just extrapolating your personal opinion?


I have been on the forums for a year and that is what a lot of people said when it got removed.


There is a massive selection bias there.

80% of Duolingo usage is on mobile - many of these users may not know (or care about) web site features.

Also, people who aren't bothered remain quiet ... those who don't like something speak up.


So? As Jim Nicholson writes, there's a massive selection bias. I feel very comfortable in saying that most Duolingo users don't use the forums, or don't post. A small number of loud people does not equal a majority.


So you are saying that people wanted that feature to be removed?


I'm saying that your use of absolutes - of "most people," of "everybody" is inappropriate. You assume, without evidence, that because you saw a certain pattern that's heavily affected by selection bias, that "everyone" agrees with you. Some people probably do hate the removal of activity; some don't. And quite a few probably couldn't care less. Without evidence to the contrary, you shouldn't be using such absolute terminology.


No; it has to do with the correlation you're making. You are saying, in a nutshell, that because you have seen a lot of disapproval from the removal of the streams, that must mean the majority shares this opinion. If I had a lot of friends who said they liked apples, does that mean the majority of the world likes apples? Though, you could be right. However, making correlations such as the one you made is a bit risky, seeing how it leaves out important factors that can impact your conclusion.


Guys(and girls) you are all right. I changed it to something else. Please correct me if I get anything else wrong.


Pros: The Duolingo website is a lot faster.


Nowadays, a user is allowed to send an abuse report directly to the staff.
You will always receive a confirmation of your abuse report.
Depending on the severity of the abuse, the staff acts within an hour untill a week. And I have always received an email, that explaines their actions.

In the past, you had to search very hard for the right moderator in a poorly organized document. And you hardly received any feedback.


Pentaan, users have always been able to report abuse directly to staff. When I arrived, there was a white support tab on the left. Then, there was an email address. Now, there is a report in the Help menu. The pros of contacting a moderator was less backlog and so generally quicker action. :) (Though, being familiar with which mods were most active was an important component to that. Not a perfect system, for sure.)


Pentaan I would add the but my post is supposed to be directly on the chat feature. Your addition would be awesome but it is not entirely related to the said feature. If you can tell me how it is, then I will add it.


You had to use the chat feature to contact the moderator.


You could always do this. It’s been an option forever.


Cons: People can communicate privately about something they want to be fixed.


Site-wide cyber bullying dropped by such a huge amount I'm still searching outer space to find where my eyebrows ended up.

There were also cons to the removal too, of course, many of which people already covered.


Just to let folks know, there are currently people in a/b groups (like myself) who have more casual chat features while Duolingo collects data on how people are interacting with the features. If the tests fail, Duolingo has to try the next idea on the list to test. As with everything on Duolingo, change takes time (sometimes a lot of time).


How is "Everybody hates not having that feature" a con? :D


Because you want everybody to love your website and to use it all the time. If you remove the features they like, then people will drop off.


fjaguero, I just noticed it doesn't say "Host" next to your username in grey (like mind says "mod"). Would you mind messaging in to staff and letting them know? They are still working out the bugs of the alpha launch. If need be, you can take a screenshot of both of our icons so they can see what you're referencing. Thanks! ^_^


Let the up voting begin!

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