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It seems to the that the week reputation (in the new groovy drop-down) is calculated based on the premise that a week starts on Sunday (for instance, the current number of my week reputation points on SO equals to that of the day).

I know that in some countries this is standard. However, given the (arguably) international nature of this site, wouldn't it be more wise to respect the ISO-8601 standard instead, which stipulates that weeks start on Monday?

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There's a few reasons we don't do other timezones on the main sites. In this case, it's not technically feasible...nor would it be fair.

Your week reputation is compared to others in the weekly tab of the /users page, so that needs to be consistent (reset at the same time). Your week resets at the exact same time as everyone else for the reputation leagues.

Also, showing a different date range for the dropdown isn't something we'd want to do, since it matches no other "week" in the system (note the stackexchange.com leagues use the same reset-on-sunday week).

We stick with a consistent UTC 00:00 reset every day for many things, time is an immensely complicated thing that also changes frequently. Let's take two quick examples:

  • Today was daylight saving's time change in the US, should we reset the week twice when time moves?
  • Timezones vary per country, some of them change DST on a whim.

As simple as time seems to be, it's not. To avoid confusion there is one way: consistency. The date/time shown on all posts, etc is always UTC time, and that's what we also use for reputation intervals.


Somewhat related: from a descriptive standpoint, a "week" needs to be a consistent term, all reputation categories can be described as:

"From the stat of the X"

X being "week", "month", "quarter", "year"...and "all time" is pretty intuitive as well (though it doesn't exactly fit the above phrase..."beginning of time" was too long, sorry!)

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thanks for your clarifications. I understand your concerns about the complexity of the time. However, I don't understand how time zones are even related to my question: the Week Starts On aspect is a purely cultural one. The only impact on SE systems would be to do the reset on Mondays UTC 00:00 instead of Sundays, don't you think? –  Xoum Mar 13 '11 at 16:29
    
@Xoum - even if you ignore timezone (it's Monday in Australia long before the US) and do UTC 00:00, we come back to the unfairness of resetting different people at different times. Also behind the scenes this would be much more complicated than it is now, for not much benefit that we can see. All of the other points above still hold: confusing and inconsistent meaning of "week" and not-equal reset times compared to other users (for the leagues) are big ones. –  Nick Craver Mar 13 '11 at 16:32

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