Reputation Is A Byproduct
Take a moment and really think who has status in your field.
You just ignored that sentence, didn’t you? Genuinely take a second and come up with 3 names.
Now try to explain why you believe they have status.
I’m going to bet it’s not because they had 1253 points after their username or were featured as a member of the week.
It’s because they had a track record of making unique and useful contributions. These contributions were gradually recognized. People talked about them. They were invited to speak at events. They were referenced in other items of content.
There are implicit and explicit reputation systems. Over the past year, I feel I’ve been in far too many meetings discussing explicit reputation systems and far too few discussing implicit systems.
Believe me, explicit reputation systems aren’t even close to the power of members genuinely working hard to produce something incredible and earning a reputation as a byproduct.
In almost every room in the past year, I’ve argued what I’m saying now. Spend more time (a lot more time) thinking of ways to encourage members to create something truly great. Think of true works of art that drive the field forward. Provide people with the resources, the support, and the attention that they need. Let people earn real status, not chase points.