https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AndrewKlee1

Friends and Followers?? Why?

I’m hoping someone can explain to me the purpose(s) served by Friends and Followers on Duolingo.

From what I can see I cannot communicate with them in any way, especially since the Clubs no longer exist. What’s the point?

July 6, 2019

64 Comments


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

At this point, there is zero social value to “Friends.” Its only use is to binge compete against other avatars. This is consistent with lingots and blue gems that also serve near zero purpose. The “gaming” aspects of Duolingo have a lot to be desired. Thankfully Duolingo continues to grow as a free language program.

July 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LICA98

plus it looks cool when you got over 3k friends (like I do ;)

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Connor371589

Well, me being one of those friends, it's mostly to motivate because you get so much XP! Also, you haven't gotten any yet today- might wanna get on that

July 8, 2019

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

Surely that just means that you have spent the time clicking on 3000 people’s usernames? Have you at least exchanged conversation with these people, or have you just followed them in order to make yourself look better?

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

How is it * possible * to exchange conversation?!

July 8, 2019

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

By these very forums, or perhaps by clubs, in that wistful bygone age.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LICA98

well most of these people have added me first and then I add in return

July 9, 2019

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

Well, that’s understandable and plausible. I won’t be suspicious of you now.

July 9, 2019

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

חאחאחאחא!

July 7, 2019

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

I think for those who want to compete with friends it might be fun, and potentially it creates a tiny modicum of community for those whose non-virtual friends aren't using Duolingo.

It used to be that we had our own individual activity streams on our profile pages, where we could communicate more directly with one another. It made more sense to follow others then, as their comments would show up in your activity stream. Duolingo shut that down because of its server instability and Duolingo's lack of resources, and (one hopes and Duolingo has claimed) because the language learning stats improved without it. The site lost a lot of its community aspect but presumably the powers that be are more satisfied with the current usage scenario. They continued to promise "something better", but in the minds of many (most?), they never delivered, at least in terms of replacing that functionality. Granted, Duolingo has improved the platform in some ways, including by expanding the French tree a lot (whatever your thoughts about crowns instead of "skill strength" indicators), and the stories are a good addition (and finally a new batch of French stories has arrived, though I really wish they'd add on to the difficult end, instead of the easy end).

By the way, while I still find Duolingo a useful platform, including for its discussion pages, these days I'm also using progress.lawlessfrench.com (Kwiziq) and clozemaster.com for grammar and vocabulary respectively (though each site has both aspects to some extent). It's a great combination, in my view. Progress with Lawless French (powered by Kwiziq) has a free placement test and great mini grammar lessons, organized by CEFR level. It's well worth a subscription to get access to more quizzes and other activities. It's also quite transparent in showing your progress, unlike Duolingo. And once you have a good grammar foundation, Clozemaster, which presents fill-in-the-blank sentences from open-source translation databases, is great for natural example sentences in French, and has tens of thousands of them.

July 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RobertoBar700807

Thank you for the links to progress.lawlessfrenc and clozemaster, I have been usin the last one, and it does help to achieve aotomaticity with vocabulary and common phrases. A for Duoling: 'don't look a gift horse in the mouth' don't be ungrateful when you receive a gift. Use it for what/when is useful to you, and when you give input for ways to improve it, maybe you can start by mentioning the Duolingo's strong points and why you still use it when you do. I know Duolingo benefits from having a large pool of user (advertisement) too, so to me it is a win/win situation.

July 6, 2019

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

Sure, Duolingo has strong positives, as I mentioned, and I still use it almost daily. But don't think we don't pay with our time and attention. I'll just note that Duolingo was projecting revenues of $30 to $40 million in 2018, so it's clearly not hurting. Win-win, perhaps, but also not a volunteer passion project anymore (if it ever was), though it's the volunteers that I personally continue to get the most value from in the sentence discussions.

July 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roody-Roo

Ah, PeaceJoypancake, if only there were a way to message you, I would say how much you helped me on the discussion pages and I miss you! But alas, no way to tell you!

:-)

July 7, 2019

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

Message received, loud and clear! Glad to be of service.

(And I'm still here, though maybe a little less often recently.)

July 7, 2019

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

I find it ironic that on the top language learning site you can't communicate with people.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marlon539760

i believe they want it family friendly i.e. kids of any age can use it thats why there is no private messaging to avoid predators. Tho i know what you mean and it is hilarious how you put it that way xD

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Diogo.D

There was a time when we could to communicate to each other (even before the clubs). It was a good time and Duo also had another tools that no longer exist. I miss this time and those features.

PS. By tools I'm referring mainly to the translation section we had here...

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DougB123

Yeah, I miss the translation feature too.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Proverbs_2_6

I'm pretty sure that the purpose of that feature is to allow you to compete (keeping track of XP) with your friends on Duolingo. It doesn't really do much otherwise.

July 6, 2019

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

Yes, but why do complete strangers follow me?

July 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Proverbs_2_6

Emphasis is on the word "purpose." I have the same problem. Even if the purpose is what it is, it doesn't mean that everyone will stick to it.

Although, now that you mention it, I'm really not sure how I feel about complete strangers seeing my progress, etc...

July 6, 2019

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

It can also sort of mention popularity but its not really much :/

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Proverbs_2_6

shrugs

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Axel591520

There is no point. Even with groups it was rather pointless. There was no private conversation within groups, only a bulletin board, You were able to leave a message there and mark it with @member and that's all there was to it.

Let's face it. Duo is an autistic owl.

Edit: I don't want to come across too negative. I wish I could communicate (beyond the comment function) with people who are as interested in languages as I am. I would appreciate it very much, if Duolingo reinstated groups with an option for private communications.

July 6, 2019

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

Based on your context, I don’t think that the best phrasing would be autistic. The most likely substitute that is generally used would be schizophrenic, but that doesn’t properly cover the obscure thought process of Duolingo.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

Ya

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/a_good_elf_531

Duo is not autistic. Humans might be autistic but robots are not. We just don't know some stupid stuffs Duo does

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ManuelPapi1

I've read and re-read your comment three times now. I'm still genuinely perplexed by what you're trying to say...

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

Arrrgghhhhh

July 7, 2019

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

It would be cool if you could: - Message each other - Compare trees - Compare achievements - Create challenges/bets with each other - Get a notification when a friend reaches a milestone​

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

Saying it won't change - Duolingo is deliberately deaf and Duo likes earning nice green money better than giving people what they want.

July 7, 2019

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

What? How can you say that Duolingo just is fixated on green money, and doesn’t care about users! Obviously they don’t care about the colour of the money, as long as they have lots of it.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

Duolingo doesn't CARE about clubs

July 8, 2019

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

And so it used to be, many many moons ago, kimmosabe.

July 7, 2019

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

It used to be a social thing, we could text one another. Sadlly policing such chats is expensive in a age when politeness is absent and insanity in discourse is overwhelming.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ManuelPapi1

I hear you.

July 7, 2019

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

I defend the communication between students on the web, as happened in the past! Each student had a space (mural/Stream activity) where someone, friend or not, could send a text and respond it whenever the student wanted. They changed it to launch ridiculous colorful flags called "achievements", which are useless. They can claim any reason, but this was a huge loss that has no explanation.

Duolingo, COMMUNICATION BETWEEN STUDENTS IS VERY IMPORTANT!

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

As if Duolingo cAres

July 8, 2019

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

Anyway, I'm pointing it. I'd like to talk to all my followers!

July 8, 2019

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

I usually only follow my IRL friends so it's good to see whether they are active. It's a more personal version of the leaderboard in my opinion.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/bri136137

There is still the ability to identify and find others on Facebook, and perhaps other social media. For all practical purposes, Duolingo has shut down their social media functions and saved bandwidth and server space by outsourcing those functions. In my experience, people have chosen have cited two reasons. They have either read a positive and encouraging comment in this forum, or they have noted that I achieve high XP totals. Seeking other members in social media has recently lead me to a French language club in a nearby city. Now I'll have access to full immersion groups.

July 7, 2019

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

A moderator told me that they took away the activity stream because of safety issues... kids getting involved with adults, things like that. It's really a pity because as Seattly_scott says below, a language learning site should really allow communication!

July 7, 2019

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

Es verdad lo que diciste y yo tambien creo que it is a pity indeed we can't use Duolingo to communicate with each other, just imagine the multilingual conversations we all could have switching languages with each sentence... mas eu acho que a segurança das crianças e muito mais importante.

July 8, 2019

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

I don't think Duolingo ever said that officially, and activity streams were always publicly visible, just like these forums, though perhaps they were overwhelming to monitor.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

I can't

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrose99

I had the same thought. I miss the conversations in the language I was trying to learn.

July 9, 2019

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

Once upon a time, even before the clubs, they had a purpose. A sense of community. You could write on your friends' timelines and talk about languages. You could compete with people you know offline. Some people still add people they know offline just to see progress.

Now I just get a bunch of random people following me from the Leagues or from the forums.

July 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/a_good_elf_531

Duolingo forgot to delete ALL methods of communication

July 7, 2019

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

In my opinion, if there is no possibility of contact with "friends" this might seem to be useless, but in fact it may create some kind of competition and might be quite nice I think.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lisa607120

I use it to keep track of my real life friends and how we’re all doing.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Denise49769

I agree

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/robin.fli

I keep the friends of the people I used to talk to in clubs. A couple of us have found each other on different platforms. So right now, for me it’s to remember who I have talked with in the past in case things change.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Caroline838894

I found a question and answer page. I can only see on desk top

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/minmin.wang

so many great god

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tatu856875

Competing with friends is fun and following people you compete against in the leagues keeps them close to continue competing, keeping them separate is better imo too.

July 8, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/7pFoGtkv

I don't use facebook but i noticed on the "Learn" page of Duolingo there is a find freinds on Facebook function. Couldn't you communicate there?

July 9, 2019

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

Facebook doesn't allow anonymous accounts. Some animals enjoy a certain level of engagement here on Duolingo without attaching it to their real-life identities.

July 9, 2019

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

Having duolingo friends is very similar to watching ants. It is actually a lot better to watch them working rather than to respond every "cuckoo, how are you.." You'll also get wiser in progress. In fact I like my duolingo friends better than my facebook friends, even if the former are complete strangers to me.

July 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DJCurfew2017

???

July 8, 2019

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

I have absolutely no clue

July 6, 2019

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

can 3 people follow me for my challenge

July 8, 2019

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

I am sorry, that is missunderstanding. Plese, dont be afraid, I dont follow you and dont be your friends. have a nice day! li

July 7, 2019

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

Can you be my friend!?! !!!.

July 6, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/a_good_elf_531

erm...

July 7, 2019
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