Gaming the trust level system

I know that Discourse was designed with intention to motivate beneficial behaviour. (See Because Reading is Fundamental).

Trust levels are based on number of posts and topics that user reads. My question is - is it possible to game the trust level system by speed-scrolling topics? Or does it take post timings into account to know if user had actually read any those posts?


Read 2nd Point here.

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I’ve read that, and I know that Discourse tracks read time. But I’m not sure that read time algorithm made it specifically into implementation of trust level system e.g.

To get to trust level 3, in the last 100 days…

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Is there a problem that your trying to solve? Yes, live humans can scroll through posts without reading them.

If this is an informational question you can look at the source to see how it works.


As someone who is an admin on one site and a member at various levels on other Discourse sites, yes I often game the trust level as I seriously do not know how to use Discourse at a lower trust level anymore. I often forget the first time I post a new reply or topic at a new forum about the trust system and then run into the bot trying to teach me and I just want to play wack-a-bot.

Some users have noted/requested a central repository or passing of a token so that those with higher trust levels get the same level or at least a much higher level automatically on other sites.


If you know median time needed to read the post you can find out if the time measured was extremely short to be able to actually read the post.

Yes, I can do that but it will take a lot of investigation.

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You could browse your site with a dummy account while having a look at /admin/users/list/active. It probably gives you enough insight how posts read and read time are calculated.