https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jim410364

The New Point Reward System is UNFAIR

Dear duolingo admins,

About your recent change to the pointing system, i will prove to you that it's unfair by a simple argument: You wanted to give 20 points whenever we bypass a lesson. Fair enough. But then you should downgrade the points of all members that had used this option before, because then it's unfair to the new learners. I have now 160.000 points bypassing many lessons and i have (almost) finished three learning trees. Now if a new learner comes around and finishes the three trees i did, will he have the same points? Of course not, he will have a lot less. So the point system will not reflect anymore the work done on the system. Furthermore, now i cannot compare myself to some heavy learners. The have a million points, and perhaps i could not get to this number even if i finish all the trees!

Gamification strategies in learning are strong motivators and your system was a good implemented one.

Take back this change! You are wasting a core element of your system!

March 5, 2019

77 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SandroSilv87901

Another problem with the new change is that it penalizes fast learners over slow learners.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Randybvain

And also it penalizes people who have not much time.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Felix_Graff

Exactly. I am very busy and am not able to devote much time to Duolingo on a daily basis, so I rely on testing out of skills to get my practice done quickly. However, with my daily goal of 50xp, I now have to test out of 3 skills, making it harder to meet my daily goal. I hope Duolingo will come to their senses and revert this update.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/peligrrojo

You can change your daily goal if you want to maintain a streak btw :)

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HerrArbo

Skimming through skills at 100mph doesn't seem like the best thing to do if you're short of time. Skipping skills isn't for learning, it's for getting past things you already know quickly.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/3Dmonocle

100 miles per hour seems fine to me. I have a good memory and need more challenge than boring repetitions. Skipping skills is fine too. Not all people learn things the same way :)

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

Duolingo has always penalized fast learners. The Crown system was an improvement to the previous system of strength that required review multiple times a day to keep at the maximum level, but it could still be better. Also, they should hurry up and apply the A/B test to remove Health from iOS devices to all users.

Removing Immersion is an A/B test applied to all users, by the way.
March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoelAmos2

The more time spent on Duolingo = more Ad revenue.

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tommybex

Of course they shouldn't get the money by making people unhappy, however people keep saying this like they're awful for wanting income. Duolingo needs people to see the ads or they can't run the site. They need to find ways to get us to spend more time on here.

March 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TheBadDog

Why watch ad to get lingots when the lingots do nothing? They need a new strategy where lingots actually do something!

April 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KaseyPasta

Give them to users to make them feel happy! It's a give-and-receive platform, not a game. You know that, right?

September 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bastien_M

Which is why they should come back to the old system. Because if they do so, they will lose so many people that their ads won't pop that much...

The "data analyst" who suggested that... gave a fake CV or anything I don't know.

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MartinaHol332933

I totally and absolutely AGREE. Please, go back to your old pointing system or recount the points, this is really unfair!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fischerfs

i second this, the test out feature made me come back very often but now it's rendered kinda useless and wasteful im not sure if it'll keep me coming back. i much preferred the previous system

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Violet_Skies

Duo likes to shoot itself in the foot sometimes

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

Every few months, either a controversial feature is added, or an important feature is removed.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@IspeakAlien, they seem determined to take duo into the mud

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VYC-1005

Nah they are wearing airpods thats why they cant hear what their users want.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/compsognathus

Oh no- oh gosh, Duo is wearing airpods, they can't hear us - oh goodness

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@Isacorn357, I'd say shoot itself in the head, I would wager that there is going to be a lot of people leaving duo after this

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KaseyPasta

To go where? Rosetta Stone?

September 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MsStealYourGirl

They did what??? I guess I’m going to have to find a new app instead, between this and lingots to test, they’ve ruined it

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OliverLlew

I now longer use the app on my phone because of the lingots to test out!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/glaceon953

You now have to pay lingots to be able to test out? I haven't used the mobile app in a long time, this sounds nuts!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

I wonder how they can support both endless review and lingots to test out.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Niki58542

Sorry my friends , i may not understand a word from this discussion ...but I am relatively new . 200 odd days.. But to be honest I do not give a .. If I do not get a crown or point or whatever it is called. I don't care . I thought this was is about us learning a many language (s) and not about any points or anything totally misleading reward system is given to us. I am just laughing when someone is achieving 2000 or 50000 or whatever points in half a day ! Seriously who cares ? ???

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KaseyPasta

You're exactly right.

September 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/greenatom

Yeah, a friend and I had been passing each other via test-outs. But now I have a 2000 point lead locked in that would be incredibly hard for her to make up. She'll probably just use Duo less.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/merkavar

are you mad? you are suggesting that after they annoy many people by capping XP, they should retroactively strip people of their level 25s.

That would cause a riot.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jim410364

I didn't suggest that.

I said that they should a) Either take it back b) Or recalculate our points. In this case obviously they should recalculate also the points needed for each level. Now that i think of it, a new player that is skipping by testing lessons will never be able to reach level 25, if they don't change it.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/merkavar

So recalculate our XP AND recalculate the XP needed for each level?

What did you think people did before crowns were introduced? When there was essentially only crown level 1?

People practiced over and over and managed to get to level 25.

So new people will be able to get to 25, it will just take longer, like before crowns.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jim410364

I am afraid it will not take more, it will take forever.

I started Duolingo learning Spanish (and I am GRATEFUL to duolingo for following its path) and when I finished the tree (by making it gold with a few skippings), i started the reverse one by doing only tests. I am sure that when I ll finish it with the new system, i won't be able to move to 25 if they don't do some recalc.

Is it bad? Yes in my opinion. I will have finished the tree, theoretically i will be at the maximum level of knowing what duolingo offers and the "calculation" of my knowledge will be a lot less than somebody who did every lesson.

So the new system, if they don't recalculate both the players xp and the points needed to level up, will not reflect anymore the knowledge that one has.

Furthermore it will not reflect even the effort done, given that learners that used the old pointing system will have accumulated points which will never be achievable anymore!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wyqtor
  • 1717

Honestly, as long as they don't mess with my streak I don't care about others having more points than me. But I can see why this change would upset some people, and maybe it would be a good idea to return to what was before.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ISpeakAlien

Duolingo should be open-sourced and forked into an improved version by some members.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wyqtor
  • 1717

Yep. Memrise too. Both apps are a lot more dumbed down than they used to be, and the downward spiral continues in order to attract as many users as possible and give them the false impression that they are actually learning something when they select a few words from the word bank in the correct order.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/VStarTraveler

Jim, I'm not a big fan of this change either, but it's tough to compare your Duolingo learning experience to those who've come before and, probably, to those who'll start at some point behind you, because the platform is always changing.

As you mentioned, you'll see users who have over a million XPs (I even follow two friends with over two million), but many earned large quantities of those points in the Immersion system that was removed quite some time ago. A lot of people (including me) were quite upset when that disappeared and some even left, but the key is that we're here to learn a language or languages. One can enjoy their time in doing it with the gamelike atmosphere and point competitions, but understand that the system has changed before and will likely change again and remember that it's what you learn and retain in the long run that really counts.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LlamasintheMist

I posted about this just now. I agree it does seem a bit of a kick in the jaw. Testing out was one of the most satisfying parts of duolingo.

But I suppose other people won't steam ahead of me so much.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@NathanielW137, I agree, I loved seeing 200 xp come up on the screen. It made me feel accomplished to know that I had done all the answers with less than 4 mistakes

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/StevenWath

I haven't seen this because I don't often test out of levels. But I wonder why so many people are so upset about it. The point is to learn new vocab, grammar and practice the language you are learning.

The points don't mean anything. The reason to test out of a skill is you already know the content and you want to unlock the next skill.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ian.Kelk

Testing out is highly dependent on what language you are learning and your experience with similar languages. I speak fluent Spanish and grew up with French, so testing out of a language like Portuguese was a no brainer. I would occasionally even learn things testing out of Portuguese when one or two new words would come up; this would have taken forever doing it lesson by lesson.

Also the XP is a motivator, and keeps me going – as do streaks. People saying "I came to learn etc" is fine, but I have days where I don't feel like learning, and the gamification elements convince me to keep going.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Poly-linguist96

Same man. The extra xp testing out system was another motivator to continue learning even when I felt like taking a break for a day. With it set at only 20xp, it takes away the incentive and extra motivation.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

Yeah, same for me. Since I know Italian, Spanish and Portuguese are easier for me, so it's more a matter of knowing how the words and the rules change, as well as getting the accent and pronunciation right.

Also people can learn either way, and if we test out and get more XP quicker it doesn't prevent anybody from learning nor does it decrease the amount of XP they can potentially get with each lesson.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@StevenWath, people (me) like to see their little xp thingy rise for the week. Is there something wrong with that? Its not just about the vocab. Learning is suppose to be fun, and now duo has just squelched the funnest part of their system. I love learning new vocab, but now its so much less fun to learn it than before.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jdsaxton

But you still get xp when you test out.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@jdsaxton, I would get more xp for doing each individual lesson now. So no. I won't be using the test out feature even if I do know the material, its a waste of xp

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Felix_Graff

@WinterSoldier. totally with you on this one. I just tested out of a 20-lesson skill in Chinese, and instead of getting the 200xp, I only got 20. It's ridiculous.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Am98505

Yep. I usually do 1000-2000xp every day, but now I'm getting 500xp for the exact same work I was doing before. Kinda disheartening to look at.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rhythmixed

I completely agree with you here. I'm here to learn a language. Have been for 6 years now. Most of the time I only do one lesson or skill per day. I don't understand why there's such a huge backlash over this new point system. It's to discourage people from moving too fast and not learning anything. We're not here racking up points, we're learning a language. It takes time for the brain to learn new things.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

The problem is that testing out this way for someone who already knows the content well enough would make it impossible for that person to get to level 25, unless that person not only tests out but also does more additional lessons in a slow paced way.

This means that a person that has more knowledge and perhaps has put in more work using additional resources, has to work a lot harder to get to level 25 compared to someone who knows less.

In short, it's a waste of time.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jileha

Since XP reflects the time spent on learning, not your knowledge level, it is only fair not to dish out too many XPs if somebody does not put in the many hours it takes.

Anybody could play the system by simply taking notes of the repeated sentences in the test to “earn” heaps of XP without learning anything. By lowering the amount of XP given, people hopefully are more focused on learning than on XP numbers.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@Jileha, you are still missing the point. Learning is suppose to be fun. By taking this away they have effectively taken away the funnest part of learning.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jileha

Maybe you are still very young and have a different perspective, but learning a language is a reward in itself, and being self-motivated is one of the most important skills you need to succeed in life. Play a video game if you need the thrill of XP.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jakub119963

So, you're saying, that people, who came to learn by playing a little game are wrong? People are more likely to come back to a learning app, if it's fun. If it becomes a chore, then it's easy to skip a day, because you're tired or in a bad mood, then your streak goes away and you end up giving up on the app. I agree, fun is not elementary in learning language, but learning language is not easy and taking fun out of it does not help. It's not only xp cap, it's also combo bonus and lingots required for test-out in an app.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jileha

@WinterSoldier

I have a happy fulfilled live with lots of fun. In contrast to some people, the enjoyment of my life or learning does not depend on XP levels.

And I weigh the benefits of empty XP levels against the actual learning effect. I am not saying that testing out is bad, not at all, but I do not see why in addtion to gained skill levels and tree progress, it should be extra rewarded by XP that are linked to “experience” and the time spent on learning and not the learning progress or skill itself.

Add to that the complaints of people competing in the leagues where honest learners apparently have no chance - I am completely in favor of reducing the amount of XP received for testing out.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@Jileha, goodness! Is there anything wrong with learning + fun? Or should we all be morose and never have any fun when it comes to learning. You must have a very bleak life if all you can think about is how to preventing enjoyment while learning! Happy learning!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

@Jileha so are you saying that someone should be penalized if they're faster learners? Sure there are people who like to compete based on numbers, I personally compete with myself and I don't really care much about XP but I do want to get to level 25 from a self-competition stand point so I can max out. Repeating something I already know, won't make me learn anything new which is exactly the reason I'm here for.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judit294350

Level 25 is not the end! It is just where they sop giving you another level. It doesn't mean you have finished - even DL. Few trees will be taken to crown level 5 by the time you reach XP level 25. Surely an all level 5 tree is a better goal - in which case you can test out for 0 XP and still achieve it.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

@Judit294350 Do you really think Level 25 is where I would stop learning the language? I review what I don't know after I'm done, but Level 25 helps because it's a nice goal to have and everybody likes goals, and I like to do reverse trees as well.

Does this mean I will stop using Duolingo? No. Does this mean I'm going to be less engaged? Perhaps. My mind works better by going faster when I already know a topic and the idea of earning 20 XP instead of what I would get if I worked slower doesn't make a lot of sense and as I said, it wouldn't make getting to level 25 quantifiable. If I would normally get 500 to a 1000 XP by going slow but instead I get 100 XP with test-outs it would take forever to get to Level 25 although I would learn more material. I would feel like it doesn't make sense to do test-outs in the first place, so now I feel like spending 10 minutes repeating something I already know has more value than 30 minutes to an hour spent learning something I don't.

I don't understand why it would bother you if someone is able to learn faster and advance to Level 25 in a faster way. In life not everything is about how much time you spend but it's about working hard and smart, and for me personally finishing multiple trees of the same language to level 25 and if need be practice more + watching movies, reading books, talking to people from other countries is the faster method.

I assume that you don't approve of these methods by the comments you write, simply because if I walked in your shoes and it wouldn't affect me I don't think I would say anything like you're doing. Whatever makes people happy as long as my methods don't have to change, I would be happy about.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/WinterSoldier.

@Judit, can you stop? NOBODY SAID LEVEL TWENTY FIVE IS THE END! And nobody said ligots, xp and streaks were the only things they are here or. But for crying out loud! Can't we have fun? Look if I wanted more work to do I wouldn't do it in the form of duolingo. Xp is what makes it enjoyable. Heck, I should just get another job at this rate!

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

@Judit294350 Btw XP means Experience Points, not time spent.

At school I've always been the slower type when I was growing up but it didn't bother me one bit if people were faster than me or skipped some grades. So, I don't get it. There's no reason to feel salty if people go faster, if they have learned they'll reap the benefits of the language. If they haven't they won't. It's that simple.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/greenatom

"The point is to learn new vocab, grammar and practice the language you are learning."

True. But the whole point of Duo is to make a game out of all that. When you change the rules of the game suddenly, people get upset.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Felix_Graff

I couldn't agree more with you!

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SparklyYimYam

What on earth has happened to the point system? I like to test out of lessons to give myself a bit of a challenge and amass points. I have a 900 day streak so have been doing Duo for a while! Where is the fun in only getting 20 points no matter what level you test out of? Please stop messing with things. There is no incentive now to push yourself to do more lessons. You are making it boring.... Why? :-(

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sm9587

I test out not to gain XP, but to cut through repetitive and overly redundant levels 4 & 5. The real culprit is levels 4 & 5, not the ability to test them out.

Level 1 of every skill is informative and one learns a lot of new material. Level 2 is still informative, expanding the context of the new material. Level 3 is basically repetitive, just to reinforce the skill. Well, it should have stopped right here. Instead, they decided to add bloat in the form of levels 4 & 5 which brings no new material, but only boredom through same exercises repeating over and over again.

With this system, smart learners go through the tree at levels 1,2,3; complete the tree and then practice. When bored they test out levels 4 & 5 eventually make the whole tree gold.

The real improvement would be to drop levels 4 & 5 all together.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judit294350

But you can still test out.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/daffodil2015

Well put. Either that, or make them more challenging, to engage people again.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jileha

The tests should cover the entire material of the skill, not just a small subset. And make them all translations into the target level or Type what you hear. Right now, most of the sentences have to be translated into the source language and only very few into the target.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OnkelD
  • 1526

I seriously doubt they'll take it back. Duo has a hard head, and they are very stubborn when it comes to admitting they blew it. Besides, what with the "leaderboards" which were a waste IMHO because it made this a "game" of competition moreso than a teaching tool, and this 20 point thing was to stop the "gamers" and their obsession with leaderboards... so... to fix that... SCREW the people who are working hard trying to skip levels after they have assimilated enough to go on without a lot of redundant nonsense. Nope... they want to FORCE you to go through that nonsense, and while they'r'e at it... get lots of exposure for their ADS! Duo has really lost a lot of its appeal

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bastien_M

I can only approve that, unfortunately :(

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BhaviM
Mod
  • 340

I agree. It was the gamification element that was motivating me big time. Plus, those XP were a reflection of the work I had done and made for a great comparison with my fellow learners. This new update is insane and highly demotivating. Totally unnecessary and not required. I hope Duolingo is listening and will help us out.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lila815216

yes! you are absolutely right, it is so unfair!

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HerrCJ

It has been taking me about 3 levels to full absorb a skill. I was hoping to start testing out of the early skills and now I feel like it is a waste of time

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BhaviM
Mod
  • 340

This is indeed quite frustrating. My motivation and joy at having cleared the level are gone now.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/compsognathus

I'm having to spend so much more time on Duo now, which is fine and all but sometimes I don't have this time.

March 5, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Helena295273

Did someone explain the reasoning behind this change (a link, anyone)?

With the new system, several times painfully struggling through an exercise while making numerous mistakes and not making any progress will earn the same amount of points as passing a test without a single mistake. I do not get it. (I don't get the crown level either, lol. But it is not in the daily goals and not on the leader board, so I probably don't need to know it.)

Honestly, I would expect something like this:

Exercise - 1 time gives 10 XP Test Level 1 (100 XP with no mistakes, 90 XP with 1 mistake,..) Test Level 2 (200 XP with no mistakes, 190 XP with 1 mistake,..) etc.

I wish to have some indication of how much I have learned, not how much time I have spent - I can use my clock for it.


Also, I wish I could take the level 5 tests again when I want to check if I have forgotten anything.

March 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Judit294350

XP was meant to reflect time spent on DL - not language level. You can also get massive XP (i theory) by just doing the same skill over and over (if you don't go mad).

For what you have learnt you can check your crowns - at least that gives you an idea how much progress you have made through the course.

Testing for testing sake would be a nice addition. However, anything meaningful is likely to be too long for most DL users (I'm thinking of third party placement tests I've done in the past and just the written was about two hours long).

March 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KiUlv

Aha, I wondered what was going on and why I suddenly was getting only 20 points for testing out of a lesson. I actually came looking for answers and I guess I got them.

March 8, 2019
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