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I see the term "gamification" appearing in two moderator election candidates' messages, and there are several questions and answers here that contain references to it.

Is it possible do write a short, unbiased definition of gamification as it applies to Mathematics Stackexchange? For the purposes of a working definition of the concept, in what ways would a more gamified MSE site differ functionally from how it currently operates; particularly from a questioner's perspective.

I'm looking for an objective description of the term as it applies here, not any kind of discussion or evaluation of its "goodness" or "badness". Thanks!

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    $\begingroup$ MSE is already highly gamified, with features like reputation and badges. See en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gamification for an overview of the concept in general. $\endgroup$ – Eric Wofsey Oct 10 '17 at 6:00
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    $\begingroup$ @EricWofsey No, you are talking about the whole of stackexchange as it currently exists. I'm asking about the further gamification of this particular SE site as discussed in the current election candidates messages and Q&A in mathematics meta. What might further gamification of mathematics SE mean? Some extremes that come to mind: Merging user-clusters into giant chaebols, closing questions because you know someone else is likely to post a good answer and gain reputation. These are of course extreme, but I am not 100% sure that nobody is thinking like this. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Oct 10 '17 at 6:45
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    $\begingroup$ "chaebols"? cabals? $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson Oct 10 '17 at 12:24
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    $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson The chaebols vs the cabals - now that's an interesting mental image. I meant chaebols in the sense of business being a big game, rather than suggest any nefarious cabal-like activity. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Oct 10 '17 at 14:00
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    $\begingroup$ The point of gamification is to encourage useful activities via making them feel like a game (as opposed to like work). The idea is not to actually turn something into a game. It maybe could happen as an unintended side-effect. Thus, at least the second extreme example you give is not an example of gamifcation. It is an example of a negative side-aspect gamification might have. $\endgroup$ – quid Oct 10 '17 at 15:20
  • $\begingroup$ The reference to gamification in Jack D'Aurizio's election message is explicitly about the existing Stack Exchange-wide gamification (he refers to being proud of creating bessel-functions). At to what Bjørn Kjos-Hanssen means, you'd have to ask him rather than the whole of meta. $\endgroup$ – Peter Taylor Oct 10 '17 at 15:28
  • $\begingroup$ @PeterTaylor A search for "gamification" here in MSE meta will currently find fifteen questions and answers where the term is used. I felt that it was used often enough in "the whole of meta" to ask here. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Oct 10 '17 at 15:47
  • $\begingroup$ You say, "I'm asking about the further gamification of this particular SE site as discussed in the current election candidates messages and Q&A in mathematics meta". I can see precisely one reference to further gamification of this SE site, and that's Bjørn's. $\endgroup$ – Peter Taylor Oct 10 '17 at 15:54
  • $\begingroup$ @PeterTaylor "and Q&A in mathematics meta" math.meta.stackexchange.com/search?q=gamification I see about fifteen more. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Oct 10 '17 at 15:56
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    $\begingroup$ Where you see 15 references to further gamification, I see 15 references to the Stack Exchange-wide gamification which you specifically told Eric Wolsey you're not interested it. Why don't you edit your question to include direct quotes from all of the references which you want clarified? $\endgroup$ – Peter Taylor Oct 10 '17 at 16:03
  • $\begingroup$ @PeterTaylor it looks like you are already in a position to post an answer here. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Oct 10 '17 at 16:06

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