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StumbleUpon drops audience rank feature

Joe Whyte pinged me this morning to tell me that StumbleUpon has removed the audience rank feature. For those of you who don’t know, the audience rank was a way to tell how many people stumble upon your favorite sites.

I have been missing my audience rank for about 3 days now. I started to get very suspicious of this so I started asking around. It looks like Stumble Upon has taken a page out of the book of digg and started removing factors that allow you to gauge your rank and profile power within stumble upon.

Mine was actually just removed this morning as I distinctly remember looking at it last night. Unfortunately, I can no longer use my large audience number as bragging rights.
This is at least the second feature that StumbleUpon has removed lately it what looks like an attempt to thwart people from trying to game the service. I can definitely see why this makes sense from StumbleUpon’s perspective but at the same time I also feel like this could actually hurt them.
While it may cause stumblers to focus more on genuine stumbling activity, taking away the point systems discourages people from actively participating to becoming more popular. It’s the whole game mechanics theory that I’m talking about.
What do you think – Is this a step in the right direction for StumbleUpon?

 StumbleUpon drops audience rank feature

Cameron Olthuis

 StumbleUpon drops audience rank feature

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9 thoughts on “StumbleUpon drops audience rank feature

  1. Good Post! yeah Joe brought that to my attention today too. I do agree with you however that this could possibly now discourage people from actively participating. The motivation before for a lot of people was to build that audience rank.

  2. Andrew – There used to be a way to gauge how popular a submission was. At the bottom of the review page for each submission it would tell you the activity level for that url. Although they didn’t give exact numbers it was a nice way to tell how popular a submission was.

  3. I think it is less of the loss than on the other social sites. Where as on digg et al its usually made quite clear who submitted the story which effects which stories you read even if subconsciously, for me on stumble its less important who submited the story.
    They never seemed to gate keepers in a similar way on stumble.

  4. I liked having the tool, but it doesn’t hinder anything by not having it. I can still stumble things I like, write reviews, connect with others and send some great traffic to sites. That’s all that I really care about. :)

  5. I don’t mind missing it one bit. Those people who are just trying to be popular, just trying to raise their “high score,” often have very little of value to contribute anyway. Losing their input will only raise the value of the service. Now, if they end up with no score to boost, and they then turn around and start using the Stumble service just as it was intended, then the conversion from gamer to Stumbler is worth every minute of it.

  6. I don’t see how not having any kind of rank would or even could discourage anyone from “participating” in the su service. If that “rank” is all that one has to look forward to in life, then it’s time to get outside and off the pc. I realize this is just one persons’ opinion, but humility is a genuine thing, not some rank.