Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

General discussion about learning languages
Cavesa
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby Cavesa » Fri Feb 22, 2019 5:04 pm

lavengro wrote:
Brun Ugle wrote:True, but many of those are basically the same course with different base languages. Also, the courses are divided up into many short courses with, for example, German 1, German 2, German 3, etc., each counting as a separate course. If they then have each course available from an English, Spanish, French, and Chinese base (and maybe a few others), it’s easy to see how one course turns into fifty or a hundred. So, while the list of courses is long, the value to any one subscriber is going to be low.


Fair enough. I posted this information because, until I started to look into it, I made the same assumption as Cavasa - that Memrise had developed only a few courses itself. Almost all of the 1,238 courses are going to be of no use to me ever. But I can see all of them being of potential use to someone within the language learning community (ie. that Korean-language speaker looking for learning materials for Russian, or a Mandarin-speaker looking for Spanish language learning materials. Even for accomplished monoglot English speakers such as myself, I was surprised to see how my English-based Memrise-developed material there was, across a much wider range of languages than I had been aware of.


I didn't make any wrong assumption. Based on all I have seen from them, I correctly assumed they have made one course of worse quality than the good user made ones per any language they saw worth of it, they chopped it into smaller chunks, and made their variations in various base languages. Again, just to some base languages, with Memrise itself admiting huge differences in the courses (for example, even the UK and US English based courses may vary in the amount of words significantly).

But let's assume for a while that the official courses are the main product, not the SRS platform. So, I went and looked at the official courses again. With only one question. How many words are there in an official course (the whole course, from 1 to 7). It is annoying the information is not clearly presented anywhere.

Ok, I will spend a few moments here and just count it level by level, to compare.
I'll take French as a good example.

If you use the French+ courses by Eunoia, you can learn over 35000 words, and there are many more courses, including large ones, courses on conjugation (mine is one of several), and anything you would like to create yourself.

With the official courses, you can learn 3006 words and phrases (including phrases like les chiens ne font pas des chats and l'hôpital a été fermé par les autorités, or je n'aime pas l'art). And that's it.

3000 wouldn't be a bad number per se (but of course the number is a bit lower, if we cut out the phrases). But would you pay for the Pro functions of Memrise for 3000 words? The cheapest option is the yearly subscription for 60 dollars.

3000 words are covered in many other products. Duolingo and Lingvist give 3000 for free (in Duolingo, the amount depends on the tree). 3000 are in a good coursebook, and that costs around 20 dollars and stays with you for how long you want it.

And also, let's not forget that a part of the learners has no problem with remembering the basic words seen everywhere but uses a tool like Memrise to learn the more advanced vocabulary.

I have never said that Memrise would be useless to everybody now. I have just noted, that it will be much less useful for a large part of the learners. Anyone wanting the large courses, the more advanced courses, or differently organised courses is without the offline app now and some people do mind. And all these people have little reason to pay for the worse product, the Memrise itself.

tl,dr:
1.The main Memrise right now is no better than lots of other products and actually rather expensive within the new league.
2.The Decks are ok, unless they get closed down in future,or you want to use the better quality user made decks in an offline app
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby lavengro » Fri Feb 22, 2019 5:56 pm

Cavesa wrote:
lavengro wrote:
Brun Ugle wrote:True, but many of those are basically the same course with different base languages. Also, the courses are divided up into many short courses with, for example, German 1, German 2, German 3, etc., each counting as a separate course. If they then have each course available from an English, Spanish, French, and Chinese base (and maybe a few others), it’s easy to see how one course turns into fifty or a hundred. So, while the list of courses is long, the value to any one subscriber is going to be low.


Fair enough. I posted this information because, until I started to look into it, I made the same assumption as Cavasa - that Memrise had developed only a few courses itself. Almost all of the 1,238 courses are going to be of no use to me ever. But I can see all of them being of potential use to someone within the language learning community (ie. that Korean-language speaker looking for learning materials for Russian, or a Mandarin-speaker looking for Spanish language learning materials. Even for accomplished monoglot English speakers such as myself, I was surprised to see how my English-based Memrise-developed material there was, across a much wider range of languages than I had been aware of.


I didn't make any wrong assumption. Based on all I have seen from them, I correctly assumed they have made one course of worse quality than the good user made ones per any language they saw worth of it, they chopped it into smaller chunks, and made their variations in various base languages. .....


Hi Cavesa,

Apologies if I misinterpreted your comment that Memrise had only made a "few" language courses. I had assumed this might wind up equating to FIGS plus a few add-ons. Turns out upon looking that the Memrise has made language courses for native English speakers for 19 to 21 languages, including:

Turkish
French
Spanish (Mexico)
Spanish (Spain)
Dutch
Swedish
Portuguese (Portugal)
Portuguese (Brazilian)
Norwegian
German
Japanese
Polish
Danish
Italian
Russian
Mandarin Chinese
Korean
Arabic
Icelandic
Mongolian
Slovenian

I get that people are angry about pending changes, and the refund issues are going to be messy. However, I am just not as keen as some appear to be to completely vilify Memrise as an organization, particularly after learning about how much learning material they make available to other-than-English native language speakers.
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Cavesa
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby Cavesa » Fri Feb 22, 2019 6:43 pm

lavengro wrote:Hi Cavesa,

Apologies if I misinterpreted your comment that Memrise had only made a "few" language courses. I had assumed this might wind up equating to FIGS plus a few add-ons. Turns out upon looking that the Memrise has made language courses for native English speakers for 19 to 21 languages, including:

Turkish
French
Spanish (Mexico)
Spanish (Spain)
Dutch
Swedish
Portuguese (Portugal)
Portuguese (Brazilian)
Norwegian
German
Japanese
Polish
Danish
Italian
Russian
Mandarin Chinese
Korean
Arabic
Icelandic
Mongolian
Slovenian

I get that people are angry about pending changes, and the refund issues are going to be messy. However, I am just not as keen as some appear to be to completely vilify Memrise as an organization, particularly after learning about how much learning material they make available to other-than-English native language speakers.


Hi,
thanks for the overview.

Where can you see any vilifing or anger? I could see a bit of well founded anger and disappointment of the people who have paid for Memrise Pro rather recently without being informed and exactly for the services that are being removed. Not other "vilification" anywhere.

I have just rationally pointed out (like others in this thread and elsewhere), that Memrise is becoming a completely different product. The point of this thread is no shaming of the company (perhaps you might like to reread it), but describing what the changes are and how they apply to us, as learners.

How is actually counting the words any attempt to "vilify" Memrise :-D Btw the word is awesome, thanks. Or how saying "a few official courses" could be inexact. 20 courses (for the English speakers, significantly fewer for the rest, depending on the language) are still nothing compared to the huge amount of the user made ones. And the length, organisation, and quality also isn't clearly superior to them. That is the truth, not "vilification". Also pointing out how much is each seller of a similar product charging for it is no anger either, it is normal information.

I'd say a huge advantage of this change is finally clearing up what is the language learning community on the internet (anywhere, not only on this forum) talking about and paying for. We have seen it in any discussion about Memrise in the recent years. The arguments about the SRS and about the official courses were mixing ina confusing manner sometimes. Now, it will be clear.
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lavengro
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby lavengro » Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:12 pm

Cavesa wrote:


Where can you see any vilifing or anger? I could see a bit of well founded anger and disappointment of the people who have paid for Memrise Pro rather recently without being informed and exactly for the services that are being removed. Not other "vilification" anywhere.


lavengro swims in other waters beyond just this pond. Sometimes those other waters are murky ones: https://www.reddit.com/r/memrise/?count ... =t3_agn27y

The following sampling, all from different users. Apologies in advance for the language, not mine:

"XXXXXXXXX.
Why.
WHY?
Ruined the 1 thing I used it for. Steady decline into nothingness.
XXXX your XXXXX company."

"Memrise levels are XXXX"

"this is the XXXXXXXXXX ever"

"today this XXXXXXX.."

"greedy cashgrab"

"XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXX"

"that is a XXXXXXXX"

And apologies as well for this (not my language - or for parts of it, not any language I recognize):

"Why oh my XXXXXXX god this was my saviour for My school-made gcse course now i have to use some XXXXX website XXXXXXX XXXX I’m so sad uhhHEGRGHGEHDBDBDHJFJDC"


edited by lavengro to overtype language so shocking that even lavengro blushed
Last edited by lavengro on Sun Feb 24, 2019 7:29 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby Brun Ugle » Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:15 pm

I've never made much use of any of Memrise's official courses, but from what little I've seen of them, I wouldn't say they are necessarily bad. Sure, they probably have some small mistakes here and there, but all courses do. And of course, the official courses don't really take you very far, maybe A2 at best, I would imagine.

I also don't really care if they want to split the user-created courses off to another site, as long as the functionality remains the same (which it seems it won't, since there won't be an app). I just don't understand how they can expect not to lose a whole lot of paying customers with this move. I've never really understood what the benefits of paying for a subscription were, but I think most of them will likely disappear. After all, most people are only studying one or two languages and could relatively quickly get through the official courses for their target languages and then have no more use for Memrise.

I can only hope that this is a preliminary step to them creating courses for more languages and more advanced courses for the languages they already have. Only that would make Memrise interesting long-term.
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Cavesa
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby Cavesa » Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:14 pm

lavengro wrote:lavengro swims in other waters beyond just this pond. Sometimes those other waters are murky ones: https://www.reddit.com/r/memrise/?count=26&before=t3_agn27y

The following sampling, all from different users. Apologies in advance for the language, not mine:


Your previous post was clearly addressed to me and my previous comments, perhaps to the whole thread. That is different. It wasn't clear you are talking about such attacks elsewhere.

The ugly samples are the standard of reddit. It's like expecting the Chinese natives to speak Korean instead, a large part of the Reddit simply natively speaks Offensive.

The wording is unpleasant indeed. But the content is actually not wrong in those messages actually addressing a particular issue (not the generic offenses). :-D "Ruined the 1 thing....." is actually not wrong in many cases (Clare has said the same thing but much more politely). And the term "Cashgrab" is not wrong either, thinking of some of the customer treatment by the company. And anger of someone putting work into a course they cannot use the way they intended now, well that is understandable too.

I don't agree with their tone, but I don't think it is more important thant the content in general.

Brun Ugle wrote:I also don't really care if they want to split the user-created courses off to another site, as long as the functionality remains the same (which it seems it won't, since there won't be an app). I just don't understand how they can expect not to lose a whole lot of paying customers with this move. I've never really understood what the benefits of paying for a subscription were, but I think most of them will likely disappear. After all, most people are only studying one or two languages and could relatively quickly get through the official courses for their target languages and then have no more use for Memrise.

Very true. The question is, whether the functionality stays in the other areas.

My guess: Memrise will gather feedback for a few months (primarily the amount of subscirptions and refunds) and then adapt. Perhaps they'll lower the Pro price or come with new subscirption schemes. A typical learner of one or two languages is unlikely to need their expensive Pro for a long time, that is definitely true.


I can only hope that this is a preliminary step to them creating courses for more languages and more advanced courses for the languages they already have. Only that would make Memrise interesting long-term.


That would be great, but it is unlikely, I'd say. Memrise is rather clear about not giving a damn about the more advanced learners, they most likely hope to gain enough from the crowd of beginners and eternal beginners.

I'd say the Decks would be very interesting as a separate product, if the old idea of paid high quality courses from other makers than the Memrise staff was revived. You know, the official wordlists from coursebooks and such stuff. The Decks platform could be ideal for it. But it is more likely the slow dying out option is the plan.
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby lavengro » Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:40 pm

Cavesa wrote: Your previous post was clearly addressed to me and my previous comments, perhaps to the whole thread. That is different. It wasn't clear you are talking about such attacks elsewhere.


I am sorry my post gave you that erroneous impression, Cavesa. My comments about the range of language courses were in response to your comments; my observation that there are some who vilify Memrise was not.

I'll exit the conversation.
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby Radioclare » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:21 pm

Christi wrote:Hope this makes sense and will be of use to someone :)


This is amazing - thank you so much!!! I was slightly scared when I saw the code as I am definitely not a computer person, but it has worked perfectly for me and I've been able to get all my words into Excel within a couple of minutes :)
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby PfifltriggPi » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:18 pm

I've never really found Memrise, Anki or SRS in general to be much help for me, not despite trying both of them, but I was considering going back to Memrise in an attempt to make a few courses based on sentences taken from literary works, probably mostly French-English and Latin-English/French, in an attempt to both help me learn words for more advanced concepts to which my reading does not expose me enough and to try to memorize more of the works of the masters, when I first heard about this whole debacle. Oh well, perhaps once the whole transition is finished and we have some feedback as to how Decks works I'll try it if the system allows.

In addition, would that sort of thing, eg. a course in which one translates sentences from, say, La Chute by Albert Camus, between French and English be something which anyone else would actually find helpful? And, come to think about it, would using it for a recent work be a copyright violation?
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Re: Memrise is moving our decks to Decks

Postby languist » Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:02 pm

PfifltriggPi wrote:In addition, would that sort of thing, eg. a course in which one translates sentences from, say, La Chute by Albert Camus, between French and English be something which anyone else would actually find helpful? And, come to think about it, would using it for a recent work be a copyright violation?


I would love it! Unsure about copyright, but I don’t think taking quotes from a book and using it for a non-profit learning resource could infringe copyright? However, I guess I’m totally just assuming that and have no idea of copyright laws the more I think about it.........
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