Feedback on Discourse badges and BBS specific badges

I would :heart: your post, except I’ve just been informed I need to wait 4 hours before I can do that again.



I got your back, bro.

We need a :heart: exchange or something. :slight_smile:


One shiny like for you, good ser.

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You can challenge. You can challenge up to 24 times per month.

(technically more than 5 flags cast on your account in the last 100 days, but ONLY if they are flags the moderator explicitly agrees with, versus defer or disagree.)


you’ll be needing my SSN? :wink:

A thought on more “qualitative” badges, and the potential for “nominations”.

There have been contributors who have shown two behaviors that I think ought to be encouraged by the bbs, but current badges have no way of reflecting this. and both would require a process of nomination and voting to approve their distribution.

  1. content expert - to a person who clearly has some professional knowledge, or at least specific passion for, a specific topic, and spends time setting the record straight on relevant posts. @PrestonSturges encyclopedic display of WWII and Mein Kampf knowledge made me think of this.

  2. deep researcher (gumshoe?) - to a person who does deep research into the topic discussed, reads the linked article, pulls quotes, and generally keeps the conversation rich with actual relevant details through research and thoroughness. @catgrin springs to mind for obvious reasons.

The other, just generally, when a really good comment shows up in a thread that is already long and old, and might be overlooked, or maybe is really insightful, but is in a somewhat niche thread and may be overlooked, that it could be “nominated” for a “nice post” but only achieves it if it ends up getting the subsequent likes.

These nominations could be restricted to a certain level of users, and “voting” could simply be through heart-ing the nomination.



I agree this is a good idea. Make the badge system include a way to reward each other for behaviors we like as a community.

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While it may seem trivial, I think two basic aspects of having a community are (1) being a member of the community; and (2) the amount one does (or does not) participate in a community.

With that in mind, what about badges for number of years a member, and number of posts?

I realize that there may be some inherent risk of bloviating concomitant with recognizing community members based on when they signed up and volume of posts, since old user ≠ wise user, and there is no correlation between number of posts and the amount of thoughtfulness that goes into a post, but these do have a kind of value in that they are easy to determine, and the badges for these don’t have to be as prominent as those for other, more meaningful forms community engagement.

I like the new re-jig of user titles. Makes me feel like I’ve been eating my bran.


Badges? We didn’t get no steenkin’ badges!

Not new funky ones, anyway.

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I know I said a while back that I didn’t care at all about the badges and other rewards for good behavior, but then… I started wondering why I was still a Trust Level 2 “Member.” So I went and looked up the requirements, and most of them I exceed handily.

Visiting at least 50 days in the last 100, not sequentially. Been around here for years, with the exception of last spring and summer when circumstances kept me off the internet entirely. I didn’t visit much right around Xmas, though.

Replied to at least 10 different topics. Probably; I have over 1100 replies so far.

Received 20 likes, given 30 likes in the last 100 days. Again, probably; I have over 3300 and nearly 1400, respectively, in the last year and a half.

No more than 5 “spam” or “offensive” flags. I dunno; I don’t think I have any. Are we always notified when we get flagged?

Not been suspended. Nope, never was.

All that remains is what I think is keeping me from being a “Regular”: reading 25% of all posts and viewing 25% of all topics. And that is where I’m always gonna fail, I fear, since I’m just not interested in nearly all of these topics:

Oh, well. I’ll continue to contribute where I feel I have something to contribute, and that’ll be perfectly fine, but I’m not about to open random threads about topics that don’t grab me and slooowly scroll down just so I can earn me a “Regular” title. Maybe there could be a title like “Irregular” for reasonably well-known folks like me who come by often enough to be recognized, but don’t spend all day reading every dad-blamed thing that gets posted on the blog.

Nah, never mind. Not worth the trouble. :wink:


Yes you are correct. The 25% is in the last 100 days, for that period, for you:

  • topics entered: 589, required 794
  • posts read: 15099, required 15200

Everything else is vastly exceeded.

Even if the requirement was reduced to 20% (enter 1 out of every 5 topics in the last 100 days) I don’t think that’d help. I am open to reducing this a bit in general as TL3 is pretty strict.

Are some statistics generated by artefacts of the interface?

There’s a jobs site I visit daily for its chronologically rolling list. Along with my aspirational clicks on “Part Time Occasional Astronaut” (“just a job five days a week?” no Rocket Man for me, thanks), I’ve also clicked on “Crossing Guard”, because when I visit next day, my browser will show that link differently, so I can easily see where I left off. I often wonder how an analysis of my browsing habits would interpret that. (This guy really needs to focus.)

At BoingBoing, I read from the BBS. I’m ignorant of any other way to dismiss topics I’m not interested in (so that they’re not presented again) than to select them, scroll rapidly through the comments, then move on without further interaction.**

Perhaps my level (not category, it seems) of “regular” is because the software thinks I’m actually reading all those topics. (I do sometimes litter the comments with a few likes as I zip past.) Or, your designation as “member” might just reflect a level of engagement vastly inferior to my own (insert new-fangled emoti-markup symbol denoting sarcasm).

Are some statistics generated by artefacts of the interface?

** I’d appreciate any advice on accomplishing my goal another way. (I bet there’s a simple button I’m missing.***) I’m not ashamed of my ignorance; it’s just that my vast experience with software leads me to equate the “Help” button with “set the controls for the heart of the black hole”.

*** It’s usually the one that exposes my belly-button.

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I’d be a fan of someone making an executive decision and just giving it to him. I mean, seriously, the guy is well known, trusted, and respected around here. Why is he still waiting by the bouncer?


You bend the rules for one guy, then we have to let all sorts of riffraff in. Let him pretend to read a load of posts just like the rest of us did :slight_smile:

(honestly, I suspect Donald’s only not making the 25% threshold because of the period when he wasn’t online)

I’m not sure I want to know what it is for me…


Maybe the moderators need to spend less time worrying about trolls, and more time worrying about people who read 100% of topics and post on 50+%.

Then I might get more exercise.


Huh. I feel like I give likes liberally, but generally aspire to receive more.

I guess in an ideal world, if everyone liked everything then for C comments and U users, with everyone commenting about the same amount, you would give C likes, and would receive U*(C/U) likes, so the balance would be a good metric, but giving more than receiving would just suggest that you were a poor commenter.

In an imperfect world, where some or many comments do not deserve likes (which presumably is a different thing again to saying they shouldn’t have been made) then giving out lots of likes is simply diluting the value of the everyone’s likes.

Likes to Comments is a good ratio for me. In Disqus I kept it around 3:1, in Discourse I’m doing good to stay around 2:1, but if I see that go down it suggests I’m commenting too much, or too poorly, and I generally amend my behavior. Not sure how that contributes to badges, specifically.

Dilution should not be a huge problem as we have a daily limit on per user likes anyways. If in one day a user could like everything ever posted by a particular user that’d be a big problem.

Last time I did something like that I inadvertently made a reader into a moderator.


That’s an awfully nice thing to say. :slight_smile: But I don’t need any special treatment, really. I get all the utility out of the BBS the way things are. I guess you might miss my company in the Lounge, but the last I heard there wasn’t much but tumbleweeds and crickets in there (if that situation has changed and there’s now a rip-roaring salon/intellectual orgy going on in there, then my position might change!).

The real reason I brought it up is because “Member” is so very easy to become, but “Regular” takes a whole lot more commitment, which is as it should be, except for the fact that if someone like me doesn’t quite meet the threshold, then perhaps that Trust Level might deserve a name that implies that extra level of involvement. This BBS is one of four tabs on my Chrome startup pages, so I’m here literally every time I fire up a web browser (my entire workday each weekday, and for much shorter periods on most weekends). In this particular Cheers bar, I may not be Norm or Cliff who showed up for all 271 episodes, but I might consider myself equivalent to Coach, with 71 episodes.

Here’s my real feedback: I think labeling Trust Level 3 as “Regular” is misleading. One could show up every single day, read (and post extensively in) every single thread about bananas, Disney, copyright, the EFF, Maker issues, Amanda Palmer, Die Antwoord, and anything concerning the word Badass, and still not meet that 25%-of-all-content-read threshold. People that do read that much of the site’s content should indeed be recognized with a higher Trust Level (if they meet all the other requirements), but I think those people are something more than just “Regulars.” I don’t really suggest adding another level, or even fiddling with the requirements very much. I just think Trust Level 3, with its current requirements, should have a different name. I dunno, “Trustees.” Or something. “Regulars” just sounds like you show up nearly every day, have a couple drinks and a handful of peanuts, maybe a quick game of darts or a D&D session in the corner, and then head on out into the world. Trust Level 3 guys, bless their hearts, must live here or something. (Are there studio apartments upstairs?)