Thank you for the reply. I am starting to like this Decks idea now that you describe it in positive terms.
I agree that Memrise needs more coordination between language experts and programmers. On the other hand, I hope you realize the business opportunities of somehow adding user-created courses to your mobile app. I also hope you realize that a separate internal computer system can be created for user-created courses without having to formally separate user-created and memrise official courses under different brands. (The Memrise Official and User-created courses can run on different client code and different servers without having to be under separate brands, allowing Memrise Official to move quickly while user-created courses are still operable.)
Have you considered adding user-created courses to the app? I think with a well tested discovery algorithm, one beta-screened with the course creator community, Memrise could see a new rise in popularity.
> For many users, the community and user-created content is Memrise’s USP - what differentiates it and makes it unique in a saturated market of language apps. Its proprietary courses work for some, but are of pedestrian quality, limited value, cover limited languages, and have a very low ceiling in terms of learner level. The ability to create custom courses, advanced courses, and courses for niche-languages are what makes Memrise amazing to us. And we as the user base are creating the content free of charge! You’re welcome, Memrise!
Many learners use memrise official courses to get a basic hold of the language and use user created ones to master it.
Indeed I think Memrise’s best course of action is not to set aside the community, but to integrate the community . I think it would be a great business decision and lead to better monetization. Think of, “Learn Lingala and visit Africa” programs. The reason the bulk of user-created course learning occurs on desktop is because mobile does not showcase or even suggest the presence of user-created courses.
> Since we focused Memrise on language learning in 2014, the vast majority of our growth and innovation has come from and within the language courses that we develop ourselves.
This is because your own courses are the only ones that people sign up for on your mobile apps. And mobile is a more popular platform than desktop these days. I’m willing to bet few of your mobile users are aware Memrise has user-created courses. Yes, they could discover user-created courses, but few people realize that that’s an option.
> In a sense, we have been maintaining two quite different products in one to the disadvantage of both. And so we have decided to give each its rightful space.
Both products deserve to be implemented as two parts of the same app. This would be best for your official-course-users, who may need context-specific vocabulary for the task or mission they’re embarking on with the language or a tool to rehearse phone numbers
Memrise should experiment with various ways of showing user-created courses to mobile app users.
Memrise can’t document the world of language fully without us, the community. Memrise does not and will never have the resources to document the diverse experiences from the gay slang of North America to the workplace lingo of Spain to the proverbs and sayings of the kibbutz. We can help you with your new efforts, whether it be video-based or dialogue-based.
I personally would like to see Memrise pair up Spanish-speakers learning English and English speakers learning Spanish to converse and try to have a dialogue under some kind of game or time pressure. And as experienced polyglots and languages learners, we can help you do that without expensive UX research.