Adding friends and following people
I've been adding people because I realized it shows my weekly progress in comparison with my friends and I like that aspect of friendly competition. I don't however understand the difference between following and being friends on this website. Also, what are the benefits of building your social circle on duolingo? Just curious to see how others use this website.
When you're friends with someone they noticed that you followed them and followed you back. This puts you on their leader board and things that you do in their stream. The benefits are friendly competition (you can only compete with each other when you are friends as you might have notice otherwise you're competing with someone that doesn't have you in their leader board) Also if your friends with some cool people they will encourage you to reach your goals and congratulate you on your accomplishments. In this way were learning language together and not just people doing a course by themselves. I hope this answers your Q.