https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Immersion. My experience, fun and frustration. Down-voting.

Hello dear friends and foes. I want to share with you my experience in Immersion so far.

I've always tried to be friendly guy. I've Never gave a down-vote and explained the reasons for an edit. I've Never insulted or mocked. And still it turns out that I have foes, believe it or not.

Five months ago I found Duolingo and decided to learn German through English (Bulgarian is my mother tongue but it is not available). It was fun I reached the half of the tree and I decided to try some Immersion. I was hooked up almost immediately. I am quite fluent in English and ground zero in German :-D. But it is fun. There are many online dictionaries and other resources on the web. The search of expressions and word combination is easy. I always researched my translations “on the line” (ho-ho - joke :-) I mean online) I managed to reach Tier 3. I was translating mostly simple sentences… Well who doesn't? I am a beginner . Don’t judge me.:-) So then I decided to do easy ones and some harder ones… I fell in love with Immersion. German sentences are like a puzzle for me. It's fun to translate and eventually something to stay in the head :-). And even more, I was receiving up-votes. I reached Tier 6.

Well then the Frustration came like a thunder.

I found an article named: Karl May - https://www.duolingo.com/translation/4ab699dff5c42eadbacb35eee0069434

Now this is an serious article. I will participate. :-) I started from the easiest sentences as I always do...
But after that I intended to work on the harder ones. So... I made about 30 simple sentences and I got tired. I took a brake and after 3 hours I got back. Well what do you know. I have 26 DOWN-VOTES. YES. 26. All of them in this article. This happen several weeks ago and I was furious. I posted in discus of the article : "Somebody at this article gave me 26 down votes for a absolutely normal translations. ARE YOU TRYING TO KILL ME? WHY DO YOU HATE ME? DO YOU KNOW WHAT THE DOWN VOTES ACTUALLY MEAN AND DO IN THE PROGRESS HERE? And how come you are high level tier if you don't know that? If you don't want me to practice here just write me a message."

At that moment, there was just one participator at this article who was at my or higher tier level. So I falsely accused him for doing this. I wrote him:

StefanBosh: Hello kshuck2. At the article Karl May I received 26 down-votes at 26 simple sentences. Since you are the only one contributor there with higher tier level then my I presume that you gave me the down-votes. If I am right please tell me why did you destroyed my progress to tier 7. If I am not right... sorry to bother you. And please excuse my English...

kshuck2:Hi, Stefan! No, it wasn't me who gave you down-votes. That's terrible! The only work I did in that article was improving the English grammar of a friend of mine (up-voting along the way, as always!). The only time I have ever given a down-vote was in a case of gross abuse, and that was only after multiple people asked that person to stop. I can help by taking a look and giving you some up-votes later. Sorry this happened to you!

StefanBosh:Thank you for your answer Sir. Best regards.

Then he posted in discus of the article: “I agree, giving such an outrageous number of down-votes without making any helpful improvements goes against the spirit of Duolingo as a productive learning space for speakers of all languages. Anyone not familiar with appropriate use of the "looks wrong" button should read the following guidelines: http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Immersion_Community_Guidelines_%28Unofficial%29”

For that I thank him ... Indeed an honorable man…

And here are the TOP 10 of the translations AWARDED with “LOOKS WRONG”

Hauptartikel: Karl-May-Verlag --- Main article: Karl May Publishing House Kopien und Parodien --- Copies and Parodies; Wikiquote: Karl May – Zitate --- Wikiquote: Karl May – Quotes; Todestag 2012 --- Date of Death 2012; Lyrische Huldigungen --- Lyrical Homage; Institutionen --- Institutions; Vereine --- Associations; Museen --- Museums; Weblinks --- Web Links;

All of them are wrong. But there is a winner here.

And the winner… my personal favorite… worthy for the “LOOKS WRONG” Hall of Fame… at the first place … iiIsSsSs:
100. --- 100.

WhAt?

Shortly after that I received another one for this: Neue Debatte um „Integrationsunwillige“ in vollem Gang --- New debate on "Unwilling to integrate" in full course

The stupidest thing here is that these 27 translations received 3-5 up votes after that but that doesn't count for my statistic. All that matters for the shorter then 5 words sentences is the first vote. If it is negative, this is what you get. It’s just luck…

Fortunately I almost collected the 243 up-votes to reach next Tier. I need around 20 more. Yes 243 upvotes. Its part of Duo system. 90% positive to reach next one. But many people don’t know that…

Some of the participants in Immersion think that voting is just “Happy Clicking”. “ Well I don’t know why but it just looks wrong. I can’t fix it but I will put a flag so somebody to see it and to fix it. But NO… I absolutely CAN’T leave it this way.”

My thoughts about bringing justice in Immersion.

Down-voting is a hostile action. People use it to punish some one else. That is not constructive. I've seen a completely wrong translation. Did not vote. But a minute after that I discovered that the translator translated different sentence at wrong place. I fixed that so he does not get tracked down by some down-vote predator. Nice Ha? I am so noble-minded. :-D ( time for fun )

Existence of this button gives people the power to harm others. Now, there is no way to counteract to this. Everyone can harm whoever he wants. Don’t you find this unfair? Someone slaps you and you just go on. You don’t even have the right to say something. “LOOKS WRONG… shut up and go to your room. Haha sucker… You can’t find me. Duolingo does not give you this option. Take this 50 down-votes. Now you need 450 up-votes to next tier.

Better system…

  1. If there is a button Looks wrong, there should be a button “Abuse with “looks wrong” button”.

  2. The “looks wrong” vote to disappear from “tier progress statistic” if there are more then 2 up-votes.

  3. Restart the tier counter. I start new tier level. Reach 100 ups and have 15 downs. – 15% down-votes. Restart the tier counter. Don’t make me to collect double or triple up-votes. What if someone down-votes 100 of my translations. I have to make 1000 up-votes. Well I will probably leave this account in that case and make other one. That’s not Fun, that’s not useful, its a mess.

  4. It would be Even nicer if I one could have a “restart button” for the counter of the votes. I start... receive 50 up 11 down. Probably will decide to restart the counter.

  5. And it would be NICEST if you erase this wicked “LOOKS WRONG” button. It does absolutely no good. People do not use it properly. It is wrongly named. And many people hate it… Now including me.

Just one button - “Looks good”, “Its ready”, “+1” or whatever.

Dear Immersion developers don’t you want us to stick around and to translate for free? The deal was: you to provide fun and opportunity for mental development, we pay with our time in translation. You were claiming that in a video at TED talks. After all this the business idea of Duolingo , a translating machine. Therefore you should make Immersion fun, fair and educational.

Sorry Friends and Foes. I tried to be brief but I failed... Thank you for your attention. And please share your thoughts... Best Regards...

February 27, 2015

90 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Hohenems

1) I didn't read your whole post. Too long for me.

2) I upvoted a bunch of your sentences, whether they were right or not (didn't even read some of them), just to help balance out the downvotes. Seems like someone just has it out for you, or there is a jack@$$ that's just going around downvoting.

3) 100. = 100th in English. The period is the German equivalent of "th" (or "nd", "st", etc). Doesn't deserve a downvote though. It was the 100th anniversary of Karl May's death.

4) I doubt Duo will ever improve immersion. They're too focused on making teachers happy. Just my opinion based on observations.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/wataya

Left a few upvotes there as well.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/IsmaTim

I believe that Duolingo has to improve for everyone not just Teacher.The role of a Teacher is nothing without a Student willing to learn and to grow. I have the opportunity to practice German with immersion but, I do not like how the exercise is implemented. Is not adaptive for the needs of the student.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

I've never had that many downvotes (I've been lucky), but I have run into enough unpleasant people in Immersion that I have pretty much stopped using it. Some people are what I call "Duo Divas" who become enraged if you dare to edit their work in any way, even when it is wrong. This type often leaves condescending comments explaining exactly why their translation is superior. Others insist on changing the date format or the spelling from (or to) US or UK standards, even if you've used an accepted form yourself. Some just go through and make random edits for no apparent reason, substituting a synonym that is no better than the original edit.

I've had nasty comments left on my stream, with one guy telling me that his translation was better because he taught English for 30 years (a surprise to me, since his comments were filled with spelling and grammar errors).

I learned a lot from Immersion while I was doing it, I worked with some wonderful people, and I still do some sentences from time to time, but the thrill is gone. I don't need the drama and I don't need the stress. I'm enjoying working on keeping my trees golden and for now, that's more than enough for me.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Nadya222

Ten Golden Trees! Now THAT'S a lot of "trees" in your forest! Kudos, to you.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

Thank you! I have not yet finished my Danish, Swedish, and Irish trees, so they are not gold, but the others are (at least they are today). ;-)

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/PauloRogerio7

Shame on them. But if you all give up for that they won. We can track some peple if they make a mistake.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dra-m-t

I don't have much to add here, because I think everyone has already hit on my reasons for not participating much in immersion. I simply wanted to put my face and comment at the bottom of this discussion to let the DL staff know that I am very on board with the idea that the immersion feature needs serious work. Please Duolingo staff, take the complaints to heart and put some extra work in on these problems.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SarahBecraft

Personally, I think a person shouldn't be able to down-vote a post unless they are going to edit it, and even then the reason for the down-vote (as opposed to just editing, which is the reasonable response for basic typos and smaller errors) should be noted. That way if someone's trolling, it'll at least be obvious to people receiving down-votes.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Selcen_Ozturk

this post is too long but yes in general downvotes are discouraging. They should maybe be renamed. When you think straight, "looks wrong" is not such a negative comment if a translation is wrong, it even says "LOOKS" wrong, not "IT is wrong". On the other hand, unofficially people agreed to use this only for totally nonsense translations - which I also agree with. For the Turkish UI I translated "looks wrong" as "VERY BAD", I think it makes more sense :)

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Grandmumm

Thank you for sharing your experiences. I fear Immersion and have not participated because of these reasons.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Ifphigenia

That is very sad and despite the negatives, immersion can be very helpful especially if you can find some friends willing to amend your translations with explanations and in a pleasant way.

As a starting point,look for people who make statements on their profiles about cooperation and collaboration in immersion, there are a lot of them out there, then ask them if they will help you. There are a lot of well motivated, helpful and nice people out there and despite appearances, they do outnumber the trolls, the arrogant, the thoughtless and the purely naive and inexperienced. Good luck :-)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/byeimgone123

;( one awesome language learner gone from Immersion ;(

March 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Soglio

Why is the "Looks wrong" button even there?

The fact that there is a separate "report abuse" button suggests that "looks wrong" isn't intended to, well, deal with abuse, whether it's vandalism (e.g., filling in gibberish) or doing something that one considers to be cheating.*

Long ago and far away, I though the purpose was to provide a way to say something like "Would someone else take a look at this? It doesn't look right to me, but what do I know?" and/or "I don't think this is right, but I don't know how to fix it." And if it were used that way, it could actually be a useful tool in helping to improve community-generated translations.

Once I became aware that "Looks wrong" assessed a penalty (or they started assessing a penalty - I forget exactly how that unfolded(, I stopped using it at all, under any circumstances.

Clearly some people use it maliciously. Or, as may be the case here, someone mistook an honest attempt for something they considered cheating. In any case, they're meaningless: There is no guidance for when to use them (although I think there is a guidelines somewhere that says not to use them at all). They can mean anything, or nothing.

In any case, why do you care? The points and levels are also meaningless and worthless. You don't get anything for them - not money, nor valuable prizes, nor anything else except - oh, wait, the power to upvote or downvote other people. All things considered, and as others here have pointed out, they don't even say anything about your level of expertise.

The fact that the "looks wrong" button is still here, despite numerous complaints and much confusion about its purpose, baffles me. Sometimes I suspect that Duolingo's primary goal is not to provide low-cost translations of the web, or even to provide language instruction, but to carry out some extensive experiment about something else. Who knows? What does it matter?

Personally, I get grumpy sometimes, but I can't complain. I'm getting free language instruction, with a lot of really helpful guidance, tips, cultural information, links to helpful sources, and other help from people who know what they're doing and are generous with their advice. (You know who you are, and I hope you know how grateful I am.)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/OneAndOnlyJosh

I've had 26 downvotes before. Also, I looked at those unofficial guidelines. I've been experiencing problems in two Immersion documents. "Ein Tag hat 24 Studenten" "Lustige Geschichte über ein Telefon". There are two users who I've been frustrated with: llouiee the awesomenerd02. llouiee is a complete "spammer", going through and adding random letters and phrases ("three happy women" was changed to, "three happy womenz smoking weed"!!!). The awesomenerd02, however, does more subtle changes, (e.g. youth center-youth centre. "He had not yet eaten"-"He had not eaten yet", and so forth). I and many other users have been frustrated by this, more so at llouiee than at the awesomenerd02 (who does some worthwhile changes). I haven't reported it yet because I figured that others will change llouiee's translations and the awesomenerd02 can have his upvotes for all his "hard work" in Immersion.

Sorry for my semi-rant. --Josh

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/byeimgone123

Josh, I am not deliberately trolling Immersion, I was translating the sentences to what seemed best to me.

I didn't read the Immersion Guidelines but now I know so sorry.

P.S Studenten means university students :)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/OneAndOnlyJosh

Apology accepted. I hope that we can work out a compromise on whatever sentences you and/or I have a problem with!

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/lostinhull

I wholeheartedly agree with you about the Diva aspect. I've tended to ignore and not upvote anything which does not improve the translation or to revert back to the first person who came up with a valid translation (which is then reinvented over and over again) where appropriate.

Not bothered in the slightest about XP & Level progression - as another thread points out, they are meaningless as an indicator of progress and Immersion is a pain in the behind when people decide to make life difficult or make trivial changes to perfectly good translations.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/OneAndOnlyJosh

I heartily agree about the meaningless of XP points for Level Progress. Why doesn't Duolingo give you a test that you have to pass in order to level up, or even basing levels off of skills completed? That would mean that your level would reflect your knowledge of German much more accurately!

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

I agree about the XPs and the translation tiers. They are not reliable indicators of one's progress. I've seen people with translation tiers in the 20's or 30's whose translations are awkward (in some cases, nearly unintelligible), and these are people who claim to be native speakers of English. Some people believe that free translation means you can eliminate entire phrases, or even add something that wasn't in the original.

I've also ended up in pointless conversations about what "sounds best" in English. I don't believe that Duo's purpose is to offer a forum where natives speakers can quibble about trivial issues of English style or usage. Of course the translation must sound natural, but CaptainAmerica16's example of "He had not yet eaten" versus "He had not eaten yet" is exactly what I'm talking about. Both are valid translations, and neither one is better than the other. This sort of trivial editing has absolutely nothing to do with learning a foreign language.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ngpaez

Why don't they just get rid of the downvote feature and just allow people to correct sentences if they feel they can do a better job?

Seeing huge X marks there won't help anyone, actually it will discourage people to get more into immersion, maybe there can be a feature where we can discuss specific sentences like we do in the levels?

I am currently only working on my Dutch tree (no time for more) and even if I'm already at level 7, I wouldn't feel comfortable doing immersion just yet due to trolling, did a bit of it in Portuguese but it came much easier for me since my native language is Spanish and maybe that's why I never had a problem there with those.

So I would suggest that we are allowed to work on immersion without flaming the rest? maybe Duo should allow a couple of translations per sentence and then get one of the mods to choose if both work or if one is the correct one instead of allowing all of this, I don't know, I'm just suggesting things by now.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pablitoneal

I also agree that immersion is flawed. Too many people just go through 'translating' numbers (usually sports statistics), adding commas, or making other unnecessary changes. Perhaps immersion could unlock only after finishing the tree for that language?

I've encountered a couple children on here who just grind immersion for the easy experience points and then brag to each other about their level. Maybe some day they'll understand having a high level for a language on Duolingo doesn't necessarily mean they've learned something.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AureliaUK

Perhaps immersion could unlock only after finishing the tree for that language?

Yes. Or at least only once you've passed the last checkpoint. Bored teenagers and other trolls are very unlikely to make it that far.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/rljones

It has been a busy three hours since you posted this comment. And I suspect that it will continue to be a focal point for some time. The subject has been discussed continually since Duolingo began. I will not include links to discussions in the "Immersion" stream, but they are not hard to find; there are many of them, and they caused Dessamator to create the Unofficial Guidelines to Immersion, which are well worth looking at.

But I don't think this problem is ever going to go away. Duolingo has clearly decided to let Immersion function as a "crowd sourced" activity, somewhat like Wikipedia. Any one and anybody is invited to participate, and eventually the majority is supposed to determine the outcome. Disagreements will happen, but the hope is that discussion and common sense will resolve them.

Good idea. But if we haven't already learned, Immersion will quickly teach us that there are all sorts of people in the world. In the centuries that humans have inhabited this planet, we have not yet found a way to exist harmoniously with one another. Immersion is a microcosm of that human situation, and because it is focused on language - one of humanity's most prized attributes - it is something that people care about a great deal.

We can't rely on Duolingo to solve the problem for us. Historically, dictatorships, even "benevolent" ones, have caused as much grief as they have prevented. Our best recourse is the one StefanBosch has chosen, to talk among ourselves and try to find a way to help each other as best we can. We are all in the same boat, realize it or not.

I sympathize with those who have received undeserved Downvotes. I have gotten only a few (one of them well-deserved, I admit; I misread a word and translated something entirely different), but I know the feeling an unjust "correction" can produce. And I have learned what it feels like to have a later translator revert to my accurate version. It happens. And that tells me that the system can work as it is supposed to.

I consider all this a "life lesson," a reality check, that goes beyond the problems of learning a language, and has absolutely nothing to do with "skill points" or "translation tiers." Almost nothing in life is ever "easy." But it can still be fun. And it is possible to learn things one never expected (and possibly never wanted to). I am still a believer in Duolongo and Immersion.

I have just received a news-flash that Leonard Nimoy has died at 83. Spock's words are appropriate: "Live long and prosper." (I just edited my own typo; Nimoy's age.)

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dra-m-t

I agree with your post on so many philosophical points, and certainly for all practical points where life and attitude are concerned. People have to shrug off the meaningless critiques and focus on developing their own skills. However, there is a point I wish to make concerning Immersion and its future.

While Immersion is indeed a microcosm of the real world and the many different types of people and their language dogma, we need not simply accept the difficulties as they exist. Because this is a software world where the programmers can limit options for interaction, there are opportunities to restrict/discourage the methods for negative interaction. As an example, take a look at the continuing development of the MMO games like World of Warcraft (which are also microcosms of the world outside). Granted, these games rely on subscribers for their income, and thus must take into consideration the wishes of subscribers in order to subsist, but just because DL operates on a different structure does not mean that there is no hope for the site to evolve. Some of the many suggestions made here (and in other posts) are worth looking into, and as a person who has done some small scale programming, I don't take lightly the enormous task we are asking DL to undertake when we want new features/operations.

Basically, I agree with your ideas counseling maturity, focus on learning, and keeping things in proper perspective. These ideas are very useful for all of us (and in all aspects of life). However, I believe that these ideas are best employed WHILE we actively and patiently search for ways to make this site and the experience it offers better. I have seen DL continually implement new features to try to make the experience better, and I believe that Immersion will follow suit, sooner or later. People should keep the (constructive) suggestions coming, and make their voices heard. After all, who knows when an experience like that of Stefan is going to knock the foundation out from under an eager language learner who hasn't toughened up to some of life's challenges yet.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

Rljones and dra-m-t, you both make very good points. My first thought after reading your comments was "If everyone treated each other with the level of respect and thoughtfulness as these two guys, Immersion would be just fine the way it is."

But not everyone expresses themselves with your level of civility, so I tend to agree with dra-m-t that the current Immersion system can be improved. There's a fine line between being overly sensitive to someone's corrections or edits, and being understandably frustrated at someone who is simply behaving in an uncivil or even hostile manner.

Duo seems to be concentrating their efforts on improving the language trees, and they have certainly made some major improvements there. I know they have limited staff and resources, but some of the suggestions for improving Immersion would be as simple as re-naming the "Looks wrong" button.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

I do not think that renaming "Looks wrong" will help. At least, it would not help in the StefanBosh case, because he was downvoted deliberately by someone who saw him as a cheater.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Yes you are right, it would not help in my case. Nothing can stop an angry person to slay the whole article. But it would help for the people who do not know yet how the tier system works.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BrookeLorren

What might help is only allowing a certain amount of downvotes (say 1 to 3) from one individual per translation level. That would prevent what happened to Stefan, but still allow to be downvoted for irrelevant, silly, or completely off translations. If someone is making horrendous translations, they are likely to get downvotes from multiple individuals.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/DustinAlen

I have only tried immersion twice. The first time I changed a single comma in a sentence and the person sent me a personal message insulting me and calling me "pedantic".

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/knittingirl

I've given you a couple of upvotes in the YouTube article, which seem to have pushed you over :) I've been extremely lucky on immersion, the only downvotes I've ever received were on tier 1, handed out, I presume, by newbies who were not malicious, but simply ignorant. But a user higher than tier 6 should definitely have known better...

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Thank you all for the up-votes. They helped me reach the needed 243. Thank you... :-)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ZsuzsaBecze

here's a lingot, too in case you need it :) and sorry for my ignorance but what it's a tier level and why is it so important to reach the next level on it?

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ZsuzsaBecze

anyway, what is the goal of immersion? if it is really practice, why is it a problem if anyone corrects my mistakes? I can learn from them...I do not mean the cases when someone deliberately does something wrong but I really appreciate if someone helps me get better by correcting my mistakes I take no offence...

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BrookeLorren

I did a downvote or two at level 1... I feel bad about it now because I know that it should only be used when the translation is REALLY off or irrelevant, not when there is a mistake.

I'm not level 6, but I've since learned not to use it except under egregious circumstances. I also usually leave someone's translation alone if it's just a matter of opinion on what sounds best.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Dcarl1

Well, no one really tells you these things, so don't feel bad. I think the first day I was on DL I went into immersion and downvoted a bunch of really benign errors. Two days later, when I finally found the wiki, I was horrified at how anti-social this was and went back and removed all of them.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

That's a great deffinition. "Anti-social". Never thought about it this way but you are cpmpletely right n my oppinion. have a lingot. :-)

March 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/taemaya

In my opinion Duolingo could detect automatically an user that down-vote in same article more then 3 times(for example). And inform him that he can have the immersion practice blocked if he is harassing the same user(down-voting to same user). or just block his down-voting button (he cannot user it for some time) if he made it more then 3 times. And dialogue box could be open each down-voting. But where would we give them suggestions? Or inform them about harassment?

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

That's a great point, taemaya. One of my friends once got downvoted over 70 TIMES IN THE SAME ARTICLE ON THE SAME DAY! I find that ridiculous, especially since he's only on translation tier 1.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AureliaUK

That wasn't one of the people who hijacked other people's work by adding extra full stops or commas in existing translations, was it?

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

Absolutely not. He is older than me and I trust that he wouldn't do that. Besides, those were only numbers that were downvoted. I mean, he is taking Geometry in 8th grade (which is equal to 10th grade math here in California). Who does that to other people?

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Now that is nasty. That's hostile act. I am speechless.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

I know, right? At one point, he told me, he was at 15% positive in number of upvotes out of total votes.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MichelleOs899172

Shoot - I wish I could get any kind of attention on my immersion translations. I've got one person who really noticed, then no one else. I'm five votes from my next tier. There have been several times when I've hoped someone would come in and upvote/edit my translations to make them better (when I was a bit unsure about some finer point of grammar), but I can't even get that! I'm wondering if it's because I'm not translating popular enough articles. :(

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

Give me a link to an article you uploaded and I'll go on (but when I don't know)

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MichelleOs899172

:) https://www.duolingo.com/translation/42eebf5651d74878d58a2be5272f8f35 But I just started that one. I've been editing a bunch of stuff in the Handel article: https://www.duolingo.com/translation/fae0ae4c811648c882aace0f64a04bcf Thanks!

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

Sure man. Anytime. By the way, you're tier 2!

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/zugnachkw

One of my first experiences with immersion was when another user down voted my translation and changed it to an inappropriate, vulgar and sexual (and totally unrelated) translation. There was no way to rectify this unfair voting and it remains one of the "past versions" of the sentence's translations (I obviously changed it back to the correct and appropriate translation!). But that really turned me off and I haven't really been back.

I should add that I did flag the translation and user, but that did nothing...

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/klinehopper

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/duty_calls.png

i'm sorry i don't quite understand the finer points of the immersion feature but i just wanted to say don't let it get you down and to remember the goals: to have fun and learn a language.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/S0R0USH

It's a troll man. It's worse on the spanish translation immersion.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

How? What happened to make you think this? Once I leveled up 3 times on translation tiers in one day for Spanish and I find immersion awesome-except when you get downvoted millions of times consecutively.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Domleschg

The downvotes can be disheartening, but don't allow them to be. Upvotes and immersion levels cannot be exchanged for valuable prizes, and there is so little - if any -monitoring of the translations that, so far as I can tell, the only reason to do them at all is in order to practice your own skills.

I turned off notifications of changes in my translations. So few were improvements and so many were frivolous or made things worse that I just stopped paying attention to them.

I'll happily upvote your good translations, but first, I'm confused. You are posting here as StefanBosh, but the translations for the first few sentences to are by SeanHirsch. Is that also you, or do I need to look further?

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

I was also confused about what StefanBosh translated. It turned out that he translated only(?) section names. Here are just a few examples of the "sentences" that I found:

Plagiate Reisen Letzte Jahre Künstlerisches Schaffen Werkausgaben Rezeption Breitenwirkung Adaptionen Hauptartikel: Karl-May-Verfilmungen 100. Todestag 2012 ...

Apparently, some vigilante decided that skipping the real content is cheating and downvoted all of his work.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Yes, as I explained in my main post: "Now this is an serious article. I will participate. :-) I started from the easiest sentences as I always do...But after that I intended to work on the harder ones. So... I made about 30 simple sentences and I got tired. I took a brake and after 3 hours I got back. Well what do you know." And stopped practice there. I don't know why he or she did it. May be your assumption is right. But that really is not important. The important thing is that the red button is used for punishment, and that's not good. :-)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

I completely agree with you that no one should use the “looks wrong” button in the way it was used against you. However, there are people who spam the forum or put completely wrong sentences as translation (sometimes completely random stuff or something obtained by google translate without any checking). So, there is a reason why DL has this button. However, it should be a way to challenge “looks wrong” to stop any abuse of this button.

Personally, I believe “immersion” should stress more co-operation rather than competition. Currently, points and tiers are rewarded based on some simplistic criteria, which lead to a lot of abuse and the desire of revenge. This is not a healthy environment for learning.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Domleschg

Well, now you understand why that would happen, anyway. I've often been irritated myself when I've uploaded an article and somebody swooped in, translated all the short bits, and moved on.

Originally when I saw people doing that, I thought they were doing something like what you said you were doing - framing out the article, with the intent of coming back to fill in. But then I saw the same people doing it repeatedly, and NOT coming back for the harder parts - apparently, I learned, because they were simply trying to rack up points. I felt sort of like somebody had come in and - how do I say this politely - raised a leg all over my article.

That may not have been your intent, but somebody may easily have drawn that conclusion. And they may have seen too many people doing what I've just described, too many times, and gone ballistic. Too bad, if your intention was honest, but so it goes.

For my part, I've been downvoted a few times for reasons that were unclear to me, but aside from hurt feelings and/or irritation, no real harm done. The points and levels are not actually redeemable for money or valuable prizes. ;-)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

I have never understood why people object to someone translating the so-called easy parts, like headings or short entries in tables and charts. Someone is going to have to do it, and if you've ever worked with a table or chart, it's not a lot of fun.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BrookeLorren

It's a good place for people that are still unsure of themselves in the language to start. When I see a really long sentence, I get overwhelmed. While I can handle the shorter sentences in Spanish, I'm still at the point in German where all but the shortest sentences are difficult to me. It's not me trying to rack up points, it's me trying to translate at the level where I am comfortable.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Yes I totally agree with you pmm123. Domleschg I really respect your thoughts and understand you reasons.But then there are the questions: Who has to do it and when, to be morally correct and not to be punished? Well after all If one have the knowledge and TIME (that is important too) to translate the so-called easy parts - let him do it. Why not. They get points... What points at tier 1? It's 1 XP for that. It's not that much right :-)

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

BrookeLorren, that is a very good point. Once you've reached a certain level in the lessons, you start to get popups from Duo encouraging you to go to Immersion. They even tell you that you are prepared to translate a certain percentage of articles. So it is understandable that learners will go there before they are completely confident about translating longer or more complex sentences.

People should give each other the benefit of the doubt and not assume that everyone who translates short items or single words is just doing it for the points. Even if that were their motivation, who cares? Does it merit retaliation by down voting?

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AureliaUK

I don't object to someone in Tier 1 translating headings and suchlike because everyone has to start somewhere, but if I see someone of Tier 4 or above doing it (and only translating headings etc) I'm generally more cynical about their motives. I only upvote such translations if they are done by someone of Tier 1 or 2.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Yes I really wanted to come back to Karl May. In fact I was just finishing my work in an article named Big Brutus : https://www.duolingo.com/translation/35b6aa48b134ca0f12e7004cc886b249
In my profile it is green from top to bottom. I mean translations and upvoting. It was long and satisfying work. I really liked the article. So I liked Karl May article and was intending to do the same. here is another article which I translated from top to bottom: https://www.duolingo.com/translation/c155c9a2cc9a96c6873768c0201583af This one I translated almost by my self. Then Mr. lc60074 Flawlessly edited, for which I am very grateful. For every edit he first up-voted and then left a great explanation. Now that's useful interaction. I'm saying this to prove my intentions you see. I always try to be honest man...

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

I just want to add to my previous post.

Though a lot of time has passed since you and some other people started to work on this article, the translation of it is still not complete. And this has nothing to do with the article being large, but rather the lack of motivation to finish any translation work. If you care mostly about your points and tiers, you are better off translating simple phrases from different articles than dealing with complex cases. So, as I see it, experience points and levels are virtually meaningless now. Moreover, they provide the wrong motivation for many people and cause a lot needless infighting over trivialities.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

JamesPerry6 I received 26 d-votes in this article. What do you expect to go there and get some more? I am not going to touch it again. I explained what I was intended participate seriously there because I liked the article. I am not a person who translates only the simple ones. I am a person who starts from the simple ones to get basic perception about the text. Please read my post above yours. Quote a post bellow: GoBruins100 "That's a great point, taemaya. One of my friends once got down-voted over 70 TIMES IN THE SAME ARTICLE ON THE SAME DAY! I find that ridiculous, especially since he's only on translation tier 1." Now what kind of motivation this person will have. I hope this doesn't happen to you when you start using Immersion.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

I can understand why you do not want to touch that article anymore, but there were a dozen other people who contributed to it. Still the article is not finished. You can find many other articles left in a similar state. So, it is not about you or somebody else but the current point system that encourages trivial translation and editing, which often leads to quibbles and unfinished work. Also, it is very easy to misread someone’s intentions online if you do not know that person well.

As to the “looks wrong” button, I agreed with you that there are real cases when it is abused. So my suggestion was: “it should be a way to challenge “looks wrong” to stop any abuse of this button.” Did you read that post of mine?

However, I do not think this button is the primary problem here. The real problem is that the current point system encourages neither co-operation nor getting the work done. Perhaps, if translation was done by self-organized teams, things would be better, because the main goal should be co-operation and exchange of knowledge, not quibbles over points.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ZsuzsaBecze

I agree with you about needless fighting. It seems to me the same thing is happening to duolingo as to all things on earth. No matter what the original intention was it is getting abused by people who do not want the task to be finished in the best possible way, they have all kinds of other intentions. Anyway, the best thing to do is to ignore those who do not help, and keep going. Anyway, I ve read on Wikipedia that Duolingo has real money from translating those stuff. Is that right?

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Quote from my main article above: "Dear Immersion developers don’t you want us to stick around and to translate for free? The deal was: you to provide fun and opportunity for mental development, we pay with our time in translation. You were claiming that in a video at TED talks. After all this the business idea of Duolingo , a translating machine. Therefore you should make Immersion fun, fair and educational." So the answer is yes it is true. It is not a bad thing at all. Duolingo is a great place to be. It gives incredible oppertunities for learning and fellowship. It is a great idea and it SHOULD be profitable. We here are a society that evolves and we are sharing our opinion for Duo's improvement. Because we care about it. :-)

March 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesPerry6

Certainly, any system can be abused in one way or another. However, if the number of points that you are rewarded is determined mostly by the number of sentences translated or edited, it encourages the abuse.

As to making money from translation, I do not know much. However, I doubt that DL makes much money in this way now.

March 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Nadya222

I like your article, here. Well thought out.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SusanHorto

I suspect the person who did it was either a new translator who didn't realize it hurt your progress, or a nasty troll. People who climb the tiers know better and they aren't interested in wasting their time holding someone else back. Rather, they are focused on translating their own sentences as accurately and quickly as possible.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Selcen_Ozturk

he would only see the downvotes from a person of his tier or higher, so it cannot be a new translator

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SusanHorto

Is that true? I didn't realize that. Have a lingot for the enlightening response.

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Selcen_Ozturk

yes. you can of course see if you can check it directly on a specific sentence if this sentences was ever downvoted (by anyone from any tier), but when you check your votes, you only see the ones from people who have at least your tier

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SusanHorto

Thanks! : )

February 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/leonig01

I've been doing immersion for a while, from English to Russian. Russian is my native language, and I consider my English skills to be sufficient for most texts. The problem with immersion starts when newcomers come and look for the "easy" words to translate, not bothering to read the entire text (perhaps they can't do it - they are beginners). So they constantly change your translations with awkward, auto-translated stubs, corrupting the text and taking the meaning out of context.

This is one of the problems Duolingo must deal with, this way or another. After all, if they are after good translations (Luis claimed on his TED talks speech that 10 amateurs will make a translation that can be compared in its quality to that of a professional translator), they need to come up with a better balance system.

On the other hand, there is this problem of the topic starter. People come here to learn, and have fun. It is naturally they will try making translations. It is not the best thing to spill downvotes on them, thus taking all the fun away.

P.S. I never downvote, unless I have a really good reason (and it's not translation-quality related). If I happen to do that, I always leave a comment, or even write directly on the person's wall why I did it.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/GregTomkins

I do quite a bit of Immersion and I have never had a single downvote, and it's not because I am very good at it; I know 10% of the time that something I post is a little sketchy. I am guessing for some reason someone decided to paint a target on your back. Strange.

I get lots of corrections, though, and I would say about 50% of them are stylistic (eg. my translation was OK but someone preferred a slightly different wording), 25% are slightly wrong, and 25% are totally right (eg. I truly misunderstood something).

Anyway, I like Immersion, I am trying to do 1000 points per day. I wish they had a aural equivalent. I'm waiting for someone to come out with that.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

That stinks! I totally agree with your point of view, StefanBosh. This has happened to me before too - once I translated bunch of single-word sentences and got downvoted on EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM! This happened to one of my friends too - right now he's at 50.0000000000001% positive with 149 upvotes and 148 downvotes and still on translation tier 1. I can't complain too much-I'm on translation tier 6 for Spanish, but still. ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS! Here's a lingot to help you out.

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pablitoneal

It's interesting for you to agree with him considering you downvoted several of my sentences while only adding commas or other nonsense in this article about Thibaut Courtois - https://www.duolingo.com/translation/997220b1989972a2e8ce45a6eb0d22cb$index=71

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

So? They were only a few sentences. Like they made a huge deal.........

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pablitoneal

I see, it's not a huge deal if you downvote someone else, but if you, or your friend, or StefanBosh get downvoted, then it's a tragedy.

Technically I agree, it's not a huge deal. The immersion section, in my opinion, does very little to help someone learn a language. It's just a quick way to get experience points. And as far as exp points go, being translation level 99 isn't more advantageous than being translation level 4, since the earned exp points don't increase after reaching level 4.

Have a lingot for admitting you're a downvoter.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Now thats a strange situation :-) . How did you know it was him.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/StefanBosh

Thank you very mach. You are very kind. About your friend It's ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS He has to receive around 1500 up-votes. WHAAAT? I can suggest to your friend to destroy his current account and to create another. Then test out to his current position on the tree. Why not? If it is about the XP, you know that once you reach tier 4, XP is does not matter. :-) If he does that by the time he reaches 1500 up-votes he will be tier 15. And with this account he will be tier 2... RIDICULOUS...

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/MycroftHolmes97

Thanks for the advice-but we're in a middle-school class right now and deleting his progress would mean him starting over from level 11, which our teacher would be appalled at. Still, I appreciate your help, StefanBosh. Thanks again!

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ralfthesquid

Poor you :( I feel your pain

February 28, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/koushik72

Whatever you've written is 100% true. And I too believe that the immersion section really needs some improvements.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ilAustiniano

For what it's worth - my personal policy. I don't give 'downs' gratuitously and I don't go fishing for bad translations to do so. But it really bothers me when someone has obviously just copied the Duobot translation when it makes no sense in English (my only "to") language and I have become a lot more ready to "down-vote" those.

It bothers me too when I get a down vote for no good reason but I don't let that stop me from enjoying and using DL.

March 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ryan5

I didn't know that "Looks Wrong" is a down-vote and carried such a harsh penalty. Probably other people think so too. I doubt most people have read the "Unofficial Guidelines" I doubt any one is doing on purpose.

The translation is difficult, because it has two purposes. Teaching people, and providing accurate translations. Now, Duo wants to reward you for learning, and make sure that their translations are accurate. I thought the "Looks wrong" was only for accuracy purposes.

The basic problem though is checking the work, I mean you are essentially being graded by people who are not skilled enough to grade you. Either they are as good as you, or more likely, worse.

March 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Appletree761932

Sorry, but what is Immersion? I haven't got it, as far as I can see.

February 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/pmm123

Immersion was a feature that Duolingo dropped a few years ago. It was a form of crowd-sourced translation of various articles, where different people worked on translating the same article. Users were also able to upload links to articles to be translated. It involved a system of up-voting and down-voting translations made by others, which sometimes caused disagreements and negative comments.

Immersion was dropped because Duolingo no longer felt it was serving the purpose it had been intended to serve. At one point, they had even hoped it could produce revenue, but that never happened.

February 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Appletree761932

Thank you! Amazing streak!

February 16, 2019
Learn German in just 5 minutes a day. For free.