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I looked at the first twenty questions that came up when I searched for reputation and view and didn't find anything like this question.

I (and probably many others) have questions that have a view to upvote factor of 500:1. It seems like those questions are generating a lot of traffic for the site but we (the author of the question) aren't getting much rep out of it. On superuser.com this seems like an even larger problem.

I propose that the rep score also factor in number of views on that page and time spent by the end user on that page. I'm thinking an actual upvote would be worth 10x more. So 1000 page views with reasonable amount of time spent on the page would equal 10 rep points. This seems fair to me.

I'm calling it "implicit upvote". Opinions?

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I still wish people would comment if they are going to downvote. –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 19:45
People tend not to upvote things they don't think are good –  random Jun 18 '11 at 19:49
@random right but I think meta should be more about discussion than opinion; plus people can just upvote your comment if they agree so we can get a feel for why people disagree –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 19:58
Besides the fact that view and view-time stats are irrelevant (in the grand scheme of voting and rep.), these two could too easily be manipulated. Labour could go into protecting it, but why create a solution that is inherently problematic, to no real beneficial end? –  Grant Thomas Jun 18 '11 at 20:04
@Mr. Disappointment If a question I ask is generating traffic for the site I feel like I should be getting something back for it. 1k page views is significant. I'm not saying it'll be easy but these guys seem plenty bright. –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 20:10
Very well. 1. You want "fair" upvotes that are more fair to your rep in particular. 2. You think "generating traffic" is a virtue in itself. 3. Your implicit upvotes would make rep more complicated and opaque, not to mention impractical to measure. –  Tobu Jun 18 '11 at 20:12
@Tobu page views are already measured so how is it impractical? Because of math? No. I just want a system of rep that factors in the fact that many people simply don't upvote, even if they're spending time reading the answer to an issue that they are having. I don't think the rep system accounts for people who don't know about upvotes. Perhaps it's a user education issue but coding in a solution is easier than educating users. –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 20:15
@Tobu re: #1: I don't understand what you mean by this. What's the other side of "fair upvotes that are more fair to your rep"? Versus what? –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 20:16
@jcollum: You do get something: there are a bunch of badges to give you recognition for other such stuff. –  Grant Thomas Jun 18 '11 at 20:17
Time spent looking at a page is impractical. Mr Disappointment expanded on how pageviews are easy to game given incentive. –  Tobu Jun 18 '11 at 20:17
The stated purpose of this site is "make the Internet better", not "get page views so we can make money on ads". I know that's counter-intuitive, because so much of the Internet claims to have all kinds of goals while only wanting eyeballs. Nonetheless you'll find the rules are consistent in supporting "make the Internet better" even when that means not supporting "get more page views". That's why your suggestion isn't getting much support. It's asking for rewards for something that isn't a goal of the system. –  Kate Gregory Jun 18 '11 at 20:19
@Kate: I don't really care about rep points, I just wish they more accurately represented how well I'm helping people by asking questions, not how many upvotes I get. I think upvotes are only loosely tied to question usefulness and I'd like to see that correlation improved. –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 20:20
This question is on the verge of being closed, so I guess that's the discussion. No one actually answered it? Odd. –  jcollum Jun 18 '11 at 20:21
@jcollum Your definition of fairness is self-serving. A question takes askers and answerers. Rep isn't fair; it measures activity, responsiveness, pedagogy, effort and expertise. You seem to think a tweak will make it fair again, instead of making it more complicated and harder to interpret. –  Tobu Jun 18 '11 at 20:24
An interesting title but uninteresting question will draw many views but few upvotes. That's about what it deserves. –  Bo Persson Jun 18 '11 at 20:24
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1 Answer

Views represent the attractiveness of a question more than its quality.

The StackExchange model already has a system in place for rewarding page views: badges.

  • Popular Question: 1,000 views
  • Notable Question: 2,500 views
  • Famous Question: 10,000 views

Views are not the same as votes (no matter how many) and shouldn't be confused with them. A view is comparatively passive and a vote is active. A view is initiated before the entire question is even read or any of its answers. A user can be "tricked" into a view and later sorely regret having looked at it. It is not possible to measure the time spent viewing a page reliably and even if it were, a good short question or answer can be read faster than a bad long question or answer.

Badges exist to reward behavior that isn't rewarded by reputation and the entire concept of reputation is based entirely on active behavior. It is true that views are good for the site and tend to correlate with useful pages and so we reward questions that generate a lot views with badges.

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I find it hard to believe that 1000 people viewed a question and only 2 found it helpful in any way. That's the root of this suggestion. Clearly the community doesn't see it that way. –  jcollum Jun 19 '11 at 1:39
@jcollum: Absolutely questions and answers don't get all the upvotes they deserve. But treating views like votes won't help that problem. We should be thinking instead of how to increase voter turnout. Why don't more people vote? –  Rick Sladkey Jun 19 '11 at 1:58
I can agree with that. And thanks for at least trying to see my point of view. I feel like the typical response in this thread has been "NO! FINE WAY IT IS!1!" –  jcollum Jun 19 '11 at 2:26
@jcollum: Meta can seem like a harsh place but it's nothing personal. Ironically, one of the nice things about meta is the high voter turnout. Everybody votes so you know exactly how people feel, pro or con! –  Rick Sladkey Jun 19 '11 at 2:59
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