My thoughts about ‘reputation’ or ‘karma’

I like this idea. What would the ideal human-awarded badge system would look like?

I’m thinking that it should include the abiliity to define badges that can be awarded by other members or through some other means that scales beyond the moderators… maybe through some anonymous nominating/voting process?

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I laid out one such system 3 years ago:

Feel free to continue that discussion there.


You have shown no evidence of said problems with badges other than “I don’t like them”.

For known reputation system problems, see:

The main issue is that you aren’t distinguishing between systems of opinion and systems of facts and data. These are radically different things and require very different approaches.


That article is a great example of when point systems go awry, but hardly evidence that point systems themselves are inherently a net negative. A poor implementation doesn’t negate the value of a concept. “This point system was terrible, therefore all point systems must be terrible.” isn’t something that I am convinced of.

Similarly, with Discourse’s badges, I don’t think that their problems negate all of their value. As for those problems, my issue isn’t simply that “I don’t like them”, but as I posted earlier:

There are other problems such as profile clutter, or members contributing non-constructively, but really none of that is ever too damaging because you guys have done a great thing by offering the option to disable badges system-wide, which is awesome.

I am though. To one of my earlier points, system of opinions can also benefit from a reputation metric specifically because they are reflecting something more fluid like social standing.

I’m not necessarily looking for a measure of truth, or that a user is an authority on knowledge. I’m looking for an expression of group dynamics that makes conversations more than just their words. That’s the potential value I see for Discourse compared to Q&A software.

To that end, I am grateful for Discourse’s plugin system. :slight_smile: Those of us who want this have reasonable means to do it. I’d love to change peoples’ mind on this, and give reputation a better uh… reputation… :man_shrugging: by showing better possibilities.


Considering the discussion here I’m surprised that nobody has weighed in over here


I hadn’t seen that one. Thanks. :+1:

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