Generate Competitive Stats for Mutual Followers

One of my favourite things about iNaturalist is the good-natured competition with friends and local iNat’ers. Climbing to the top of a ‘Most Species’ list in a given area is a huge motivator to observe organisms I might otherwise pass by (for me, that’s plants). I think another feature could be added that gives us a competitive push.

Much like in the annual data summary which graphs our observations over time, I’d like to see a version which graphs both our observations AND those of mutual followers (people who follow us, and we follow back). Ideally, people would have the option to opt out if they didn’t want their stats displayed, but I know of a few folks who’d be interested in the friendly competition aspect.

Admittedly, I’ve seen concern over viewing iNaturalist as a game degrading data quality for the sake of a ‘high score’. This is a problem iNat-wide, and this competitive feature certainly wouldn’t help things. I would hope the ‘mutual follower’ requirement would keep things community-oriented and honest.


You can sort of do this with a collection project. For example, here is a project for an iNat meet-up in Texas last year. There wasn’t any formal competition, but you could see who made the most observations, species, etc.


Thanks for your reply! Yes, and I love that feature for projects in bounded areas, bioblitzes, etc. I’d really like to see that extended to the entire world, but in a way that only tracks people you choose (so not exactly the worldwide leaderboard).

An added bonus would be graphics for obsvs or species over time to track people’s positions. Perhaps this graphic is its own separate idea, and would also make a nice addition to project leaderboards.

Apologies for not being more thorough in my original post.

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You can certainly make a project that only has users as a requirement, eg here’s one that compares you and I starting on Jan 1, 2019, although the date is not necessary.

As for more stats, I hear ya. However ,some of these stats and charts are create an extra load for our servers, which is why, for example, you have to regenerate your stats for the year in review pages - they won’t update automatically.

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