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We — and by that, I mean me included — have been cool to implementing wiki achievements, a system whereby people get little rewards when they complete certain tasks on the wiki. As was pointed out in the succinct, but determinative wiki achievements discussion about a year ago, they were thought of as clutter, and a system that could be easily "gamed", or cheated.

The proposal

However, Ausir has informed me that they've made a tremendous improvement in the volume of traffic at his primary wiki, w:c:fallout. And, indeed, w:c:fallout is usually ranked as the busiest wiki in the gaming division.

We've lost a lot of our volume of traffic over the summer. Most weeks of July and August, we've not even broken the top 10 in our division. It should be a goal of ours to remain in the top 10 entertainment wikis year round — not just when DW is transmitting new episodes.

I'd therefore like to propose a "beta test" for the feature here at Tardis. I think we should switch it on now, just as we approach the return of Doctor Who for the second half of the series. Then we see if it attracts and retains new users.

If no one has any objections, I'd like to turn it on in 72 hours — that is, roughly Thursday (Friday, if you're over the dateline from North America) so that I have time to "skin" the badges so they look appropriate to our wiki. The default badges are dead ugly.
czechout@fandom   16:54:40 Mon 22 Aug 2011 

Discussion

If it helps people keep this wiki in shape, then go ahead. It might give self importance to some users, maybe, but it could be used to keep the editors motivated. -- Tybort (talk page) 17:06, August 22, 2011 (UTC)

If you think being in the top ten is worth suffering such a gimmicky feature, go for it. Personally, I don't think being in the top ten wikis is of any importance whatsoever. It's not a competition after all, despite what these "achievements" say.--Skittles the hog - talk 17:12, August 22, 2011 (UTC)

I hear ya. I don't think that being in the top 10 is important for its own sake. The reason that it has some relevance is that it gives us free advertisement. It means that we're on the front page of the entertainment section. So, somebody coming to wikia for the very first time might see us there. I personally don't care whether we're first or 240th, but I do care about our profile being high enough that we're easy to find.
czechout@fandom   19:30:42 Mon 22 Aug 2011 

Sounds like its worth a try, I can't see any reason for it not to be a useful feature. --Revan\Talk 17:13, August 22, 2011 (UTC)


I think it's worth a try, but with a trial period. My jaundiced view is that we may wind up with people competing on sheer volume. As someone who views himself as sweeping up around here, I am concerned about the sheer volume of poor changes that might result. I am likely anticipating trouble, so give it a try..... but be ready to turn it off. Boblipton 17:31, August 22, 2011 (UTC)

Oh i very much share the concern that this might lead to a stream of "garbage" revisions. However, we do have the ability to determine the nature of the badges awarded. I won't be able to say exactly how flexible the customisation is until we turn it on, but I think we will be able to target things better than just "total number of edits". From what I've seen of the menus in screenshots, thoguh, it looks quite flexible. And if we find people trying to game our award tracks, we can just block that person and they're outta the game entirely. When a person is blocked, they lose their badges.
czechout@fandom   19:30:42 Mon 22 Aug 2011 

The only things that are customisable are the icons and achievement titles. For example, we would be stuck with "Add 500 images to pages", but you would be able to change the name from "Curator" and the image of a painting to something a bit more DWU. At least on the surface these are the limits, I have no idea if you can do some magic via CSS.--Skittles the hog - talk 19:49, August 22, 2011 (UTC)

After actually checking what the hell I'm talking about, I've found that you can actually create articles around edits to a specific category. For example, you could create a series of achievements rewarded for editing the articles in Category:European nations. This gives you the likes of "make 100 edits to European nations pages". The individual achievements still remain unalterable though.--Skittles the hog - talk 19:59, August 22, 2011 (UTC)
i have no idea what this is about, but i agree that it should be tried but ready to be turned off if needed. i don't see any big deal in being the person with the most edits or whatever. i think that is the best way to make something like this unreliable. also, i think the website should stay mainly for whovians. if other people come in, that's ok, but that isn't the audience you should be aiming at, so advertising on the front page should be no big deal. besides, pages from this website already show up near the top of google searches on doctor who related subjects (that's how i found this website). isn't that enough? --Imamadmad 08:50, August 23, 2011 (UTC)
I am still of the opinion that it could bring a lot of rubbish edits and feel for Boblipton, we should look not just to attracting more people, but keeping the ones we've got.
And, there's the old quality vs quantity argument. We might bring in a whole load of new editors, but if they just leave us with more work to do and little to show from it…I'm doubt it would be worth it.
Imamadmad, I don't think this site should be for just Doctor Who fans. It should be anyone seeking information about Doctor Who and its related programmes, I fairly often read Memory Alpha, though I wouldn't consider myself a Trek fan, and when searching for information about specific programmes I usually go for a wiki for those shows rather than Wikipedia because the detail of information is greater.
So, turn it on for a few days, as long as we're decided that this is a trial period and we can turn it off if need be. --Tangerineduel / talk 13:37, August 23, 2011 (UTC)

I think alot of what I was thinking has already been said. I think the trial period is a good idea, but truthfully, think an achievements system seems alittle out of place on a wiki. It could be potentially beneficial if used right though, if you have the right achievements that is. I think someone mentioned it before. Don't just give an achievement for editing a page. Instead you might have an achievement for adding pics to pictureless wiki pages or an achievement for fixing a stub. Whatever the achievement, it should focus on aspects of the wikia that are neglected. MochaShakaKhan 18:48, August 23, 2011 (UTC)

Conclusions

It would appear there's general consensus to proceed with a trial period. I have begun the process of handcrafting dozens of graphics to customise the appearance of the awards so that they have relevance for our wiki. However, thanks to what some people are calling the "implosion of Wikia" today, I'm severely behind schedule. I had wanted to roll out the test beginning tomorrow, but I may now have to defer to the weekend. I now have to clean up rather more basic things about the wiki like — I dunno — being able to see the edit button and the options underneath. It would be appreciated if other admin could refrain from enabling Achievements so that it could be rolled out as a completed, fully Doctor Who-themed feature.
czechout@fandom   04:00:31 Thu 25 Aug 2011 

Closing

This feature has been enabled, and seem to be working well. Having not heard even a lick of complaint about it during the six week trial period, and indeed noting the fact that it has clearly brought more good edits than bad, I declare this feature launch a sucess. Achievements, rebranded here as the Game of Rassilon will continue for the indefinite future.
czechout@fandom   15:24: Sat 01 Oct 2011 
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