Newcomers often get discouraged because they get limited feedback, and the feedback they do receive is generally critical or about someone reverting their edit.
Research shows that praise and encouragement from other users increases newcomer retention. We want to think about how to encourage experienced users to thank and award newcomers for good contributions. Perhaps mentors could be encouraged to do this on their mentor dashboards or through notifications. We can utilize existing communication mechanisms which past studies have proven to have a degree of positive effect.
The personalized praise idea is part of a larger Growth team Positive Reinforcement effort.
Providing positive reinforcement about their involvement will encourage users to continue contributing to Wikipedia.
Users are more likely to continue contributing when recognition and rewards are personalised and come from a real person.
- A personal message from the newcomer’s mentor appearing in the homepage.
- An echo notification from the mentor or the Wikimedia Growth team.
- “Thanks” on a specific edit
- Encouraging more Thanks across the wikis by fulfilling this wishlist item: Enable Thanks Button by default in Watchlists and Recent Changes
- A new milestone badge awarded by the mentor or the Wikimedia Growth team relating to a specific edit.
Personalized praise designs on Figma