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I have a proposal to introduce some new badges to increase participation (and to introduce some competitive spirit): how about awarding badges for being a top-rated (say top 3) contributor in a league-table on a given site in any given week / month / year?

(example here: https://stackexchange.com/leagues/69/week/math, i.e. "top rank")

Something along the lines of: top contributor in any given week = bronze badge, top contributor in any given month = silver badge, top contributor in a given year = gold badge (for the avoidance of doubt, I mean top contributor in a given league table, not in a specific tag).

Also some badges for being top 3: perhaps something along the lines of being top 3 in any 3 weeks is a bronze badge, being top 3 in any 3 months is a silver badge, and being top 3 in any given year is another silver badge of a different sort. Should encourage consistency.

Introducing these badges would increase participation from already top participants as there would be an element of competition. Additionally, badges for being top-rated in a given week might increase participation from new quality contributors (i.e being top rated in a month or a year might be very difficult, but it might be achievable for new contributors to be top-ranked in a given week).

Of course, the general idea is to increase participation and quality of posts, so variations of the above proposals are welcome: i.e. badges for being top 10 contributor, instead of top 3, etc.

Edit: guys, this is a genuinely well meant proposal for increased quality participation on the various sites. If you take a step back and give it some deeper thought, hopefully you'll start to see / imagine the added value this could generate. Everyone loves being awarded badges! :)

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    This has immediate opportunities for abuse: Create a new tag just so you could be the top contributor in that tag. – Robert Longson Jun 23 at 11:25
  • I meant top contributor on a given site: so if you're top 3 in the entire league table on math.stackexchange.com, in a given month, you will get a badge. Not a top contributor in a given tag.... – Jan Stuller Jun 23 at 11:31
  • @RobertLongson: Perhaps I should add why I though of this idea: once you start contributing and get up-votes, you will appear in the reputation league tables. When you get (say) near the top 10 in a given week, wouldn't it be stimulating to try to win a badge by increasing your contribution to climb up the league ranking and end up (say) in the top 10? – Jan Stuller Jun 23 at 11:37
  • Pretty hard in Stack Overflow. – Robert Longson Jun 23 at 11:41
  • @RobertLongson: even more of a reason to award a badge for how difficult it is? Additionally, this gets to the point I meant: this should introduce a bit of a competition from already top contributors, so it should increase participation and quality overall. – Jan Stuller Jun 23 at 11:44
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    The existing badges already cause enough bad behaviour like i.stack.imgur.com/zxrFj.png after which the user is even allowed to keep the badges – samcarter_is_at_topanswers.xyz Jun 23 at 11:45
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    All the people who might have the slightest chance of getting that badge on Stack Overflow don't need any more motivation. – Robert Longson Jun 23 at 11:45
  • @samcarter_is_at_topanswers.xyz: I see how some badges can be abused. But in my opinion it is very difficult to get to the top of the league tables and I'd say almost impossible to manipulate your way into a badge that way. As I said before: I see it as a way to reward top participants and to encourage participation from already well-regarded contributors. – Jan Stuller Jun 23 at 11:48
  • @RobertLongson: fine, that is a fair comment. Might be a bit easier to top the league tables on other sites though... whilst it might be super difficult to end up top-ranked in a year or even a month, I also thought that awarding a badge for being top-ranked in a week would encourage new contributors. – Jan Stuller Jun 23 at 11:50
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    Downvotes on meta feature requests are often used to simply show disagreement: they mean that users don't want that feature implemented. It does not mean users are outraged. – Tufkamt Jun 24 at 6:44
  • First of all, this will give advantages to users who already have a high amount of (quality) posts since they will usually get at most 200 rep (capped) daily just from the upvotes on existing posts without doing anything, and the only way to go even further is by getting their new answers accepted and bounty (example: on SO, a user only posted a single answer on Jun 9 and yet is ranked around #30 monthly). So, this might encourage posting answers to duplicate questions that should have been closed instead, just to get the rep from acceptance. – Meta Andrew T. Jun 25 at 5:39

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