PhotoBlog badges: What should be rewarded?

by Ram Ya August. 04, 2016 7074 views

To reward active members who contribute so much to the site, I would like to propose a points system where users can collect badges and small prizes. This is an initiative in beta phase and I would like to ask members for their input.

Keep in mind that point system is a computer algorithm. As with any computer program, we as users need to fine tune it over time to get a qualitative outcome. With that said, what site contributions/actions we should value and give points to? 

A very rough draft of what I have in mind

We can most likely capture any action you could think of, such as comments, likes, or even captions. So feel free to suggest any helpful actions that you would like to see more of in the community.

Please add your suggestions below.

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There are 16 comments , add yours!
Stormfish 4 years, 12 months ago

i really like the idea! badgesare a cool way of making people aware of things, they definitely are better than the old boring "congrats on your fp" frenzy that everyone was going nut on here every time someones oicture made it to be the site'sone day eye catcher.

i think you could go really creative on the badges idea. they could mark all kinds of stuff, the funniest blog entry, the cutest pet shot, the sweetest baby, the most colors, the best b/w scene, the most dramatic portraits, the weirdest abstracts, etc... all voted for by the members, so everyone gets involved.

how about rewarding people with badges who write the most comments (not by entries, but by words)? or those with the most pictures in yellow, with round things or from abandoned houses? how about a badge for the most consistently used tag? or a badge for the "friends collectors" (you get it in bronce, silver and gold after 100, 500 and 1000 followers)?

there is loads of possibilities for this. make it fun and challenging! it'll definitely liven up this so called "community" of coffee table debutants here and, hopefully, mix new interesting members a bit with the gerontocracy. :-)

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Stormfish Replied to Stormfish 4 years, 12 months ago

oh, and btw... the mostly dismissive comments here are not representative. this is all from people who have been on photoblog for years and feel like it should stay the f*ck like it was. really... if you can, tey to get the voice of those who are new here and dont know the ancient crypt of the "true" photoblog from the last century. they might love the idea.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Marsha Replied to Stormfish 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't necessarily think that Photoblog should remain exactly the way it was...but certainly it wouldn't hurt to preserve the positive and beneficial aspects that made so many members turn, over the years from average to good photographers. If everyone here is looking for a "fun and games" photography website as the one described above, then by all means, Ram, implement it. I have a feeling many more serious photographers who are looking to improve and learn by sharing photos, as well as engaging, connecting and collaborating with others in a meaningful way would turn away.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Stormfish Replied to Marsha 4 years, 12 months ago

that's a very odd line of argument. do you mean to say learning, engaging and collaborating in "meaningful ways" needs to be deprived of "fun and games"? about every paedagoge and psychologist would disagree. ;-)

if anything, badges could help in all those meaningful things you seek. it really all deoends on the kind of badges, doesnt it? and i, for one, would be proud to wear one about the least discussed philosophical blog entries on photoblog. and i know several, semi-pro photographers here who would KILL for more photography related, even technical topics - id say, put a badge on your blog indicating that you are part of that interest group - to everyone's advantage.

why do so few people here see the possibilities of photoblogs changes? its sad... the developer obviously has done a mountain of a job here and still has more interesting ideas, and all we are doing is picking on changed features, lament missing watermarks or futile privacy and wish we get back that stone age page with its massive spam bot problem.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Kara Bana 4 years, 12 months ago

You've mentioned a couple of times, which I've been a member of for 5 years. I've read your comments a few times, but I don't understand the connection between them & the badges/points system you've described. Goodreads doesn't have such a format.
From reading the active members comments re this idea, you can see points of any kind are not what motivates them to post on PB. I know you don't want to alienate active long time members, so perhaps this idea should be shelved for now and revisited at some future time should the interest be there.
I'd suggest giving this new makeover the way it currently is time. We're all adjusting to it, & discovering it. I do like the new look, photos are the focus, as they should be, and the interaction between members is still there. Our photos have never looked better, so thank you for that. It's inviting and appealing, and you can spend a lot of time browsing people's pages. Another thanks to you for that. These changes are positive and give PB an updated, fresh & bright look, and will draw in more new users.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Ram Ya 4 years, 12 months ago

@Marsha, Marilyn, Sadhya, Antonio

I appreciate the input and your concern about the negative impact this could have. This is a huge risk for me as well. The last thing I want is the abuse of this system and to lose the value of genuine interactions within the site.

However, I disagree with the "We are not children" argument. Communities like or are not driven by children, quite the contrary.

We could take risks or we could let things just be the way it is and fade into a 404 error (site closure). Not taking risks because they are hard (getting value out of a reward system) is a sure way to loose the game. If we try we will at least have a chance to survive.

I am not talking about a fancy badge for your home page. I would not need member input to implement that. What we should do is little more complex and need some input from users to capture what we value. Hence the question "what site contributions/actions we should value and give points to". Important to note that badges are not even planned for blog homepage because I don't want site's agenda to clutter this personal space.

p.s. For those who don't know what the hell is StackOverflow, this user discusses the two-way benefits of such a system.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Marsha 4 years, 12 months ago

Having a busy summer and haven't had time yet to plunge back into Photoblog. However, during this time away I've had second thoughts about coming back, especially when I've popped in and seen some discontent from previous members. Until your post above, my feelings on whether to go or stay have averaged 50/50, but this idea of rewarding PB members for "positive behavior" puts me squarely in the "leave" category. I feel you do not understand why people, mostly amateur photographers, come here to be a part of this community. We don't want badges and rewards for being here and participating - we are not children who can be manipulated with "prizes." We just want to SHARE our photos and get some feedback and support from our friends/followers and then happily return that same favor to them (no thought of rewards necessary). Such sharing and communicating is a wonderful way to learn, grow, appreciate, and gain more insight into becoming a better photographer which in itself is one of the main reasons why most of us are here. In my opinion, pitting members against each other with the amount of awards received, making some game of it will change the whole idea of what Photoblog is/was all about - sad, but true. - PB member since 2008

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Moira Replied to Marsha 4 years, 11 months ago

I agree with you Marsha. I was never a "gold star" pupil at school , which made me feel very inadequate at that time. So I certainly don't want to go back to feeling like that .
My photographs I post are to share and also learn but I well know they are not TOP quality and really only need encouraging comments on how to improve them.

4 years, 11 months ago Edited
Bzh29 4 years, 12 months ago

In my candid idea ... I do not find great interest in adding badges ... challenge and score is not purpose for me ... If you add, I will do with it ! :)

Maybe off-topic here (on your post) , I add I'm missing some button-links of the old photoblog
- search (browse) by tags
- opportunity to see who favorited one of my photos (I can see the favorited photos, but cannot who if they do not mention it on my post)
- who liked my post (I can just the the number of clics and must go on "notifications" and review them all)
Maybe I did not find the appropriate button to click on it ! :))
Opening directly my account in "home page" is very good thing, and I have not to endure the "forum" ...
but when clicking on "browse" know that I am not interested by "popular" "Editor's" "Categories" ... I would like to choose directly in "fresh" or "Following" ...
With the "old photoblog", I was near to close & finish ... I waited when you announced a "new photoblog" while friends went away or stopped posting ... This is better ... I still wait and hope ! :)
Good Luck Photoblog !

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Marilyn Grimble 4 years, 12 months ago

I don't like this idea at ll - we are not children. People post for various reasons, but NOT a gold star - the very reason I left 500px. Mxx

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Sadhya Rippon 4 years, 12 months ago

I left school some time ago, and was never a girl guide. I don't need the incentive of a badge to post my pictures. If I was able to access the stats from my "old" photoblog, which unfortunately I am no longer able to, I would show you the enormous number of posts I have made, the number of comments I have received and given, all without the dangling carrot of a badge.

I think you are aiming at a different community group from the one I want to belong to.

I think you are making a mistake here.

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 4 years, 12 months ago

I do not like this kind of rewards. Sorry Ram. But keep on fighting. ☺☺

4 years, 12 months ago Edited
Leslie D 5 years ago

Oh dear. It sounds like a popularity contest, of which I've never been fond of. Probably because I've never been very popular! I appreciate all your efforts to breathe new life into this site, and clearly that is happening. Given that this idea will most likely move forward, I would suggest rewarding milestones. i.e., "this is my 25th- 50th- 100th post". Or, "I've been an active member here for 1 year" etc. Good luck! I'm sure you'll be hearing more from others.

5 years ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Leslie D 5 years ago

Hi Leslie, Thanks for the input. Certainly, we can have milestones for user achievements such as posts and number of years they have been with us.

The challenge is to have a system where quality is rewarded. I think other user's engagement with a blog is the best method we have to measure that. The goal should be to encourage members who are contributing most to the platform and the community.

5 years ago Edited
Longchamp Henri Replied to Ram Ya 5 years ago

You seem confuse quality and quantity : both could be rwarded but how to measure quality ?

5 years ago Edited
Ram Ya Replied to Longchamp Henri 5 years ago

User engagement with a post or an author is a good indication of the relative quality of that post/blog (relative to other posts and what we as a community value). World's most thriving community site's such as,, are based on this assumption. Of course it does not mean we can implement a system and forget about it, constant improvements are needed to maintain it's quality and direction.

Note: I don't mean the quality of user's art, I mean the quality and quantity of a user's contribution to the community.

An example is a user who posts an educational or informative post that receives lot of engagement as oppose to someone who comes here to spam which gets no engagement or appreciation from members.

5 years ago Edited