I'm pretty sure Simon's intention in creating this site is to help in the awakening process. However I'm just curious about the reason for the points and badge system. I guess my question is do you think the site would be as successful without the merit system? and does the accumulation of points and badges actually bring out a part of our egoic nature? or do they on some subconscious level keep us motivated to partake and learn and grow here?

asked 11 Feb '10, 16:28

Michaela's gravatar image


The badge and point system is part of the software that runs InwardQuest. The genius behind this software is not the technology, but the insights that were gained about human nature from the process of developing the software.

These insights are discussed at length on the StackOverflow blog at http://blog.stackoverflow.com, but let me offer a couple of observations:

  1. People won't always work for free, but they will work harder for badges and reputation points than they will for token amounts of money.

  2. In general, good answers are rewarded more than poor answers.

  3. As you gain reputation, you gain more privileges (the system trusts you more). This dissuades people who want something for nothing (such as free advertising for their get-rich quick scheme) from participating.

I don't know if the ego is involved, but there's something very satisfying about earning points and badges. As long as the system encourages people to submit quality content, I say that is a good thing.


answered 11 Feb '10, 17:50

Vesuvius's gravatar image


As I've hinted at before, some time ago, there is really not that much on Inward Quest that is pre-planned. And that also applies to the effects of the reputation points and badges system.

When I first came across the programmer's site StackOverflow, I felt in an instant that the same software should be used for a spirituality-based website.

After several months of waiting for the developers to complete a version we could use, and strong intuitive urging that wouldn't let me forget the idea, Inward Quest was born.

Apart from that intuition, I really didn't have much idea whether anyone would be interested in using the site at all. And, personally, I am quite surprised that the reputation points system and badges seem to be so popular.

But, regardless of people's reasons for using the website (and any reason is fine with me!), I am grateful that the site is gradually developing into a treasure house of profound metaphysical knowledge, freely available to anyone in the world.

And, for that, I am extremely grateful to all those who selflessly contribute so much of their time and wisdom here.

Where we are all going with this website is anybody's guess... :-)


answered 12 Feb '10, 00:17

Simon%20Templeton's gravatar image

Simon Templeton ♦♦

edited 12 Feb '10, 00:23

+1 I think it is wonderful too, and I am sad to have only just discovered this site. I have been contributing my wisdom on the moms4mom site, and stumbled across this just yesterday. Thank you. Sincerely...As for the points and badges... it is all very democratic and does not mean that the best answers are always the accepted ones. As an example on the Moms4mom site, the highest points and badges by no means indicate that that person is a better parent!!! so badges and point do not necessarily equate to higher state of enlightenment.

(09 Mar '10, 08:43) emination

Simon,I wish to first tell you how truely greatful I am for this creation of yours.I never open it without finding something that I consider valuable.To me,all questions indicate a need for greater understanding.For this reason,I like to carefully consider my responce as I am sure others do as well. As to the points and badges, they serve as an indication of the recipients desire to be of assistance which for some is needed,whereas for others they may not be necessary.To each his own.Thanks again. Don V

(28 Sep '10, 00:19) Don V

you're the best. Thanks so much.

(28 Sep '10, 21:51) zvolkov
showing 2 of 3 show 1 more comments

Thanks for the answers everyone. I fully agree that the reason people visit the site doesn't really matter. I was just curious to hear input on the part the points and badges played in encouraging people to come back.For me the diversity in the questions and answers keep me coming back as I am learning things I probably would never have dreamed of looking into. It is also good to feel that we are contributing to helping each other grow in a positve way.Everyone participating here is helping and no-one should ever feel intimidated because some have high points. There are a few very intellectual people who give amazing and insightful answers and some who may not be as intellectual offer an equal amount of insight in their answers. There is no right or wrong - only what resonates as such with you.

I think we will all be somewhat more openminded because of this site. Thanks again :-) And I'm still not too sure if there is a little bit of the ego involved in the points, but I guess we are all human as well so we're entitled to the occasional transgression:-)


Since asking this question quite a while ago, I realize I love it when someone leaves a comment that my answer is helpful and points or badges don't come anywhere close to that:)


answered 12 Feb '10, 01:04

Michaela's gravatar image


edited 28 Sep '10, 01:27

This site is about intellectual abillities use to see into the metaphysical and spiritual abilities that we are able to do and are going on in life. We are finding out the mind is far more than math and sciences that the subconscious mind is vast. That is why people are learning about the artistic people and the things they are able to do even though one half of thier brains are not even functional right. Education is great but this is education on another lever and it goes much deeper and spiritual level which connects to God consciouness. So, glad you are enjoying this site. You help make

(12 Feb '10, 04:45) flowingwater

this site great Michaela as well as each of everyone else who come and visit and partiscipate. Have a great day.

(12 Feb '10, 04:46) flowingwater

Thank you flowingwater - you contribute greatly to this site. Have a great day too :-)

(13 Feb '10, 03:31) Michaela

@Michaela - I agree with you that, while at the start the points and badges are quite interesting, there does come a time when having been of genuine value to others is more interesting :)

(28 Sep '10, 05:08) Stingray
showing 2 of 4 show 2 more comments

Well, it is like any sport if you do join in the game and play you different want to win some times. I believe the reputation points do help inspire you to ask more questions than you normally would and give more answeres than you normally would trying to increase your chances to getting more reputatuons points or badges. Most people may not know how to get the badges if they don't than go to the fact page and it will tell them about it.

But all in all I believe yes people would ask questions and give answers anyway just maybe not as ofen but it would still be very successful. There are so many that don't give reputatuon points at all, some only gives it a few times and others gives quite often but there are not many that do that seriously.

But you see you got some people who just want to read the questions and answers and really not participate and that is fine, otheres just wants to ask some questions some times but not all of the times and that is fine. You got some who love to answer questions but don't want to ask many and that is fine. Than of course you got those who just loves to ask any question that they can think of and they are good at it and that is fine and great. So there is a variey on this site.

Sometimes when a question is ask the answer goes completely a diffent way that was expect but still it brings new light and thought to it that might not have been thought of.

More people need to participate in giving more repuatation points if you like the questions or answers that were ask or answered. I think there are some very good questions ask and answered here and good comments as well. The reputations were really design to give reputations points to answers and questions that you felt was a really good answer or question and good facts and truths. It was knowledgeable to you. But sometimes they are given just because you like the answer and it reach out to you and touched you in a deep way or profound way. We give them for different reasons for both the questions and answers.

I have been with it since the begining and there are a lot of good questions and answers way on back there. When and if you have time go back to the very last page and start there answers questions and reading answers to questions. We use to do a lot of bounties but we hardly do that now for people don't I guess want to give up some of their points to make the question a bounty question indluding seem to be myself as well. We also tried after just a couple of days pu a check to the answer to the question we ask that we thought fitted the best and if we didn't fine a answer that did than we made it a bounty question. But we are not doing it as often.

The adminstrators do a very good job of keeping points, rewording things, grammar and spelling or just simply putting it where it will be better understood and answered. They are really great at all of what they do.

I think this site has great protential to really help enlighten a lot of people on their spiritual journey through just helping each other understand a few things even better. We kind of keep one another lifted up, on a good virbrational track, and sharing different moments of ourselves, someone else, or materials we have read so it is a composite of many libraries. I feel like we are having Alexendria Library coming together with knowledge of many metaphysical and spiritual things from all over the world coming together and learning of how powerful our minds are and how to harness it to make our live more happy and successful and keeping our souls lined up with God.


answered 11 Feb '10, 17:50

flowingwater's gravatar image


edited 11 Feb '10, 18:06

It's funny I entered IQ this evening and the 1st thing I did was look at my points. Maybe subconsciously they are one of a reason/attraction for coming back.The badges I think give a reference to were a persons interest lies.


answered 11 Feb '10, 22:34

ursixx's gravatar image


I personally don't think that the points matter that much to anyone. If you are always posting intriguing and helpful answers around even if you have <100 points I am sure many people would still take notice of you.

As for the badges, they are something more like a 'personal' quest to keep individuals occupied apart from answering questions on the site and to keep them active on this site.

After all, it is quite easy to 'cheat' the system of the points, all you need to do is just create a few more accounts and log in using different web browsers to vote every answer of yours whenever you post one. Not that I am recommending it though....


answered 29 Sep '10, 01:47

kakaboo's gravatar image


Actually, if you do that, I believe the system will notice and automatically remove all points from all your accounts.

(29 Sep '10, 05:21) Barry Allen ♦♦

well I am sure there are a lot of ways to avoid being detected, but I dont think I should be discussing something like this so :)

(29 Sep '10, 16:10) kakaboo

Thanks for responding kakaboo:)

(09 Oct '10, 22:24) Michaela
showing 2 of 3 show 1 more comments

Reputation points and badges serve no meaning except for the ego. They are romantic symbolism that specifically attribute and enhance the very process most who are on this site are attempting to transcend.

But the irony is funny.


answered 16 Jan '11, 00:53

no1wakesup%202's gravatar image

no1wakesup 2

"The irony is funny" :)

(16 Jan '11, 17:38) Michaela

I find it all off putting and I have a suspicion that the genuine seeker may feel a little intimidated by those with large numbers by names (and sometimes might be apt to give some responses more weight than is wise).

I still haven't figured out quite how the site works and I have been visiting for nearly two weeks now.

Having said that - I am enjoying the challenge of having to revisit past learnings, assumed knowledge, and entertaining new ones. Ever the student who is happy to share.


answered 11 Feb '10, 23:57

Inactive%20User's gravatar image

Inactive User ♦♦

It just popped into my head that 'a big head' might have to be corralled long enough for 'new ideas' to sink into it.. !! Maybe Simon and this software have got it just right. Thanks God.

(12 Feb '10, 00:02) Inactive User ♦♦

Have a look at the faq, if you haven't seen it already: http://www.inwardquest.com/faq

(12 Feb '10, 01:18) Vesuvius

You me Lorraine you have figured it out quite well. You just ask questions if you would like to, aswer questions and give comments if you would like to and that is it. Now the reputation points you have got that down as well if you like the question or answer than you give it a up vote again if you want to. Refer to the fact page to get a complete understanding of the reputations points and badges and the type of questions they are looking for the be ask on this site. The only reason most have a high reputations points is that not only have they been here a long time.

(12 Feb '10, 04:25) flowingwater

Refer to the fact page to get a complete understanding of the reputations points and badges and the type of questions they are looking for the be ask on this site. The only reason most have a high reputations points is that not only have they been here a long time on the site probably from the begining and giving fairly good answers but also they have put a lot of time an energy into being on the site daily constantly asking questions, answering questions, commentiing giving reputatuons points to others helping out anyway they good as they learn on their own spiritual journey.

(12 Feb '10, 04:28) flowingwater

Some have been on this site for hours daily for a long or ever other day to help keep it billed up with questions and answers for the new people too see and want to jump right in and start answering. If you don't know or understand how everything works just check out the fact sheets it will explain everthing. Now for those not interesting in the reputation points than just don't use them as some do just read the questions and answers or ask questions and answers if you would like too. If they new just coming on they will be helped along the way if they decide to ask and answer questons.

(12 Feb '10, 04:33) flowingwater
showing 2 of 5 show 3 more comments

Oh, erm, I think I must be the only one so far who doesnt look at points and badges:/ I usually just look to see who has asked what and who has replied. Still being new here I don't know how much of it works anyhoo.. but one thing I have learnt is that each individual here shares A Very Important part of themselves with the others on this board, and that's lovely:) Maybe it would not have been the same board without the p&bs as some people might have chosen not to contribute.. if the p&bs are the icing on the cake, would they still have chosen the cake, I feel that the vast majority would have done so, of course that's just my opinion and no disrespect to p&bs! This is such a wonderful board, imagine being the one visualising this for everyone! wow!


answered 13 Feb '10, 23:44

DivineHammer's gravatar image


Devine Hammer, Like you, I find that I do not need points or badges but I am pleased that they are here for those who do.Like you said,the cake is plenty good with or without the iceing.Don V

(28 Sep '10, 00:34) Don V

Michaela,You not only ask very pertinant questions,but offer very mind stimulating answers as well and I realy appreciate both.Being a newby I find that I am drawn to some contributers more than others because of their obvious knowlege and insight.such as Vesuvous,Stingray,Yourself and Vee to name only a few.There are many others that I could mention and those who were not should not take that to mean that their questions and answers are not just as important.They are, so keep up the good work Guys and Gals as I need your insight as I am sure many others do as well.Thanks again.As to the points and badges ,some appreciate them, some don't but this site would be great,with or without.I for one feel that this is the greatest site anywhere and can only grow in number over time and may very well become the most powerful site in the world.Other than that I realy don't have an opinion.LOL.Don V


answered 28 Sep '10, 00:58

Don%20V's gravatar image

Don V

edited 28 Sep '10, 01:11

Thank you Don - you've really added some wonderful insights in the short time you've been interacting here and you make a very welcome addition to the site :)

(28 Sep '10, 01:29) Michaela

I appreciate your question, and the answer to it is “YES!” I for one do not focus on the points, or badges, and I have been with this site for many months now, and I have only four badges. So, it is not about the points, and Badges for me. I like to hear and read other people’s point of view, and I like to give mine. I am a seeker, and I am interested in both the religious, and the Metaphysical aspects of things, and this site caters to that.

I also like reading, and writing. This site gives me the opportunity to express my inner thoughts, and to share my wisdom, and knowledge with other like minded. I have done volunteer work, so I would still come to this site even if there were no points, or Badges coming to me, since this site is one of my greatest pastime hobbies. Also it is nice to help out, and to contribute to something you like doing. There is a saying: freely give, and freely you shall receive, and I know that Simon Templeton is the living proof of these words. Thank you Inward-Quest!


answered 28 Sep '10, 23:35

Inactive%20User's gravatar image

Inactive User ♦♦

Thank you for your answer Vee :)

(09 Oct '10, 22:24) Michaela

I have observed the site and the interaction of the users (including myself) since the very beginning and my conclusion is "Yes, the points and badges contribute a lot to make the site what it is".

As users of the site, we are not really after the points because it means we will be ahead of all the others and will in a sense be "winning the competition". The reason we want people to upvote our answers is because we seek their approval. We want others to confirm the rightness of our answers. We feel good when we get that credibility.

I personally think that if some people's answers on the site were not being upvoted, they would gradually lose confidence and would most probably stop posting answers. It is because most of us seek the approval of others, and if we don't get it, it demoralises us.

However, I do think that a some people (although probably very few) are not motivated a huge amount by the points and badges. They are not too bothered whether other people approve of their answers or not. They are purely posting answers to help others with genuine questions. And I think it is those people who will accumulate points really quickly because they don't need other people's upvotes to prove their credibility. In other words, they do not need the approval of others.

Ultimately, it is the points and badges that ensure that most people contribute to the site quite regularly and it is for that reason that the site works so well.


answered 09 Oct '10, 18:31

Pink%20Diamond's gravatar image

Pink Diamond

Thanks for your response Rani :)

(09 Oct '10, 22:21) Michaela

I have not been on the site long at all days maybe. I have received many badges. I have no ego drive to get the next badge. The badges do give a feeling of progress though. I think they are a good thing. I sure they help in participation; and that's a good thing. One person made a snotty comment about a post I made. I didn't reply to it. The site is a huge blessing to me. I still goof up in how I use the site. I might read the FAQ one of the days. Truthfully I don't have any axes to grind.


answered 07 Nov '10, 04:03

Tom's gravatar image


Thanks for your answer Tom - It's always good to have new members,welcome :)

(07 Nov '10, 20:05) Michaela
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