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First off, this question (from 2009) is similar to mine but I believe it is not a duplicate: I am aware that these days, we don't have a problem with too few people editing posts. If anything, we should be encouraging high-quality edits, and maybe even actively discourage unhelpful edits (not entirely sure about that, but it's also not what this question is about).

So I am wondering whether it would make sense/be a good idea to try and encourage people to make their edits meaningful by providing some sort of additional incentive that goes beyond the 2 rep points users with < 2000 rep can earn from getting a suggested edit approved. For instance, users could e.g.

  • earn a small amount of additional rep every time a post they edited gets upvoted
  • earn a badge if the number of upvotes for a certain number of posts increases significantly (doubles/triples/crosses a certain threshold etc.) after they edited them

Beyond encouraging people to be thorough when editing posts, attaching some sort of long-term benefits to great edits would also be a way of saying

"We acknowledge that even though you are not the original author of this post, your contribution played an important role in it becoming a valuable resource for the community."


What's your take on this? And, if something like this were to be implemented, what (if any!) would be the criteria for identifying "meaningful" edits?

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I don't think there's really a way for the system to automatically reward an edit in any way - there really isn't a strong enough correlation between the edit itself and any subsequent up-votes. I just don't see how the system can make an assumption that the two are related at all (with the added complication that occurs when multiple people have edited a post, which is quite common).

Personally, I edit usually because I can't stand to look at poorly-worded, poorly-tagged or poorly-formatted questions. I never got into that - at all - when I was low enough rep where it would have mattered. But I've never done it for badges or any other accolades, and the existence of an additional badge would not encourage me to edit more (or improve my editing skills). That's just one person, but I doubt I'm alone.

I do remember making some pretty substantial edits to questions in really bad shape, and a few times I've received comments - not from the OP, but fellow editors I respect - along the lines of "amazing edit!" That is way more reward for me than some system-generated badge that nobody else might even notice.

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