Some approximately 100 days before I posted a similar question explaining a mandatory test for new user to get more familiar with site working however it was highly disagreed in form of downvotes. Let us take an example of a user "x" and "y"(just random not pointing to any specific user). They both joined the site. However x's motive was to gain more knowledge while y's motive was to get answers of his test question. Now as they create their account they will be presented with a option of giving non-mandatory test to get the site better. To encourage new users, they will be granted $50$ rep if they did that. Now x will attend the test to get the site better and y will leave that and most probably ask a contextless question and some contrarian of EoQS will answer that and after receiving the answer y will be happy and ask more to join. No traffic lose.

Now take case of x. x will attend the test. He might find the site rules so strict or okay. So it might be possible that after knowing the rules he might find the strict so he might feel his contributions will be to good question and ask more people to join. Maybe after finding rules he feel the site so strict that he might ask users not to join but we don't need these type of users anyway.

The reason why I am focusing so much on traffic is because last time my idea was rejected was because of traffic loss

What will the test include?

First the user will be asked to read the tour page. Then the user will be shown the website or ways to use MathJax. The test will start with question like write in the text box $2+2$ is not equal to $3$ by MathJax and the user will write and then the user will write the answer and the computer will tell it is the right answer or not. If not then computer will display the right answer. This way it will continue till $20$ to $30$ questions. Passing marks will be some around $20$ to $25$. Then the user will be shown some question and asked to take actions for them. The action could be:

  • Upvote
  • Recommend downvote
  • Recommend Closure
  • Recommend Deletion
  • No action needed
  • I can't decide what to do
  • Don't have idea on this topic

Here also $30$ questions and passing question could be $20$ to $25$. And congrats user is awarded $50$ rep.


  1. This will help the site as when user will know more about rules they might start asking question with context

  2. Time of experienced users will not go waste in using mathjax for new user post

  3. New user will stop posting image ( although this is related to point 2) and use MathJax

  4. Less flags would be raised, less work for mods and happily mods might have more time to fulfil people which has recently become a high issue

  5. More information will be available for future readers

  6. EoQS might work more better as new users would be aware of not to answer contextless question


  1. Still questions might be closed for duplicates

What are your view point about it? Do you agree or do you disagree? All opinions all appreciated.

Edit: Let me answer all postmortes's questions:

  1. For question 1 it would be the Stack Exchange team making this new feature

  2. For question 2, 3 and 4 the question won't be fixed. For example in review queues we have seen that some random question pokes up as a test similarly 30 random questions will come. There are 10000 of questions so hardly in 300 users some question will be same.

  3. For question 5, I or any person can open a meta post where answers will be written regarding bugs. There would be an option in test "Report a bug" and the system will take them to the meta post for bug and reading the full question just like they spared time for test and would in form of answer write the bug.

  4. For question 6 and 7, giving test as I posted earlier is not mandatory. Just if you give that you might get extra rep while starting even giving you the privilege to comment and upvote.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "This way it will continue till 20 to 30 questions. Passing marks will be some around 25 to 28." 25 out of 20 – that's a tough test to pass! $\endgroup$ Jul 26 at 5:57
  • $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson for mathjax it might be tough but for deciding for question action it might easy. So let me change the passing marks $\endgroup$
    – user876009
    Jul 26 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson edited. $\endgroup$
    – user876009
    Jul 26 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ You can read this answer and the comments underneath it. The suggestion is good, but it's about the implementation really. $\endgroup$ Jul 26 at 6:31
  • $\begingroup$ Can the people who disagree with my opinion tell the reason for that? $\endgroup$
    – user876009
    Jul 26 at 12:37
  • $\begingroup$ They may be don't like your ideas @JitendraSingh.Personally, I agree with you $\endgroup$
    – jasmine
    Jul 26 at 18:55

Putting my Product Owner hat on for a moment then, since this is a feature request there are (the usual) things missing$^1$.

  1. Who will be enabling this test? There is a division of labour already: StackOverflow and its employees own the code to the site, and presumably they will need to be asked/persuaded to provide an interface for this test. If they refuse I don't see any easy way to implement it, but any suggestions you have should be noted.

  2. Who will own this test? Who has responsibility for setting the questions? Here I suspect you intend a group, such as moderators, or perhaps a Test-Administrators chat-room owners group, or perhaps it's even just going to be you. But you need to be specific.

  3. (actually 2a) If the answer to 2 above isn't "moderators" then how will changes to the ownership of the test be handled? Elections? Nepotism? (No-one ever accepts nepotism...) Volunteers?

  4. How often are the questions going to be changed? Or will they be forever fixed, in which case I expect the answers will become cut'n'pasteable on some external website which will rather defeat the purpose of the test.

  5. How will complaints about the test questions be handled? The community here constantly debates what a good question looks like, so should we expect anything different when it comes to "good" test questions?

  6. What's the cut-off point for people having to do the test? If I've been lurking but never posted for three years, do I have to take the test before I can post?

  7. Lastly, but not least: you say explicitly that you're concerned about loss of traffic, but you're putting an obstacle in the way to traffic by adding a test. The last thing any Product Owner who cares about traffic will agree to is adding requests for information from a user -- this is a common battleground between Product and Marketing camps. How are you going to measure the traffic change from implementing the test, and what the key metrics that you are going to use to show that the test is worthwhile and benefits the site overall?

$^1$ From the Product perspective Stakeholders always miss necessary details; that's why you have a Product Owner/Manager in the first place. This isn't personal.

  • $\begingroup$ I think I have answered all your points. Do check my edit $\endgroup$
    – user876009
    Jul 26 at 8:29
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @JitendraSingh ok, I'll have to leave this answer here for people to make sense of your edit though. $\endgroup$
    – postmortes
    Jul 26 at 8:30

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