You can post in forums (other than the Help forum) only if (a) you've clicked the Stumble! button twenty-five times and (b) your account has existed for at least three days. If you believe that your account has satisfied those criteria but the account still isn't able to post, a likely cause is that a stumbleupon.com cookie needs to be reissued. The least complicated way to do that is to close all browser windows before trying again to post. (A savvy user can, alternately, selectively delete the
stumbleupon.com PHPSESSID cookie.)
Your profile pages feature a tab labeled "Forum" (adjacent to the Network tab on your profile navigation bar) only after you've posted twenty-five webpage reviews or become a sponsor. Note that the optional Forums toolbar button navigates to the same location as said Forum tab, so please don't post inconsequential reviews in order to reach the threshold. This feature exists to persuade a new user to explore toolbar features, reviewing, etc. before engaging in the forums.
Your password is stored as plain text on your computer. It's also sent as plain text in communications with StumbleUpon servers. Choose a password unrelated to banking and e-commerce accounts.
StumbleUpon records "I like it!" and "Not-for-me" ratings. But your privacy settings determine which (if any) of those ratings can be seen by other people. Default behavior is to list recent "I like it!"-rated pages on the Recent Sites list of your Reviews page and to display your avatar on relevant commentary pages. This default setting is labeled "Show only non-adult favorites." As the label suggests, this setting also excludes showing information when the rated page is in an adult topic.
Changing that privacy setting to "Don't show any favorites" will hide your Recent Sites list and will cause your avatar not to display at the top of any commentary page. That setting is retroactive in that it affects visibility of all ratings (old and new) for all webpages outside the stumbleupon.com domain.
A sponsor receives additional options. For example, a sponsor can hide the Recent Sites list without hiding commentary page avatars.
A way to increase privacy further is to publish no information about your identity. If you're considering this option, beware that someone technically savvy and sufficiently interested can discover the IP/host name of an active user's computer. Of course, relaying IP/host name is part of the normal Web communication process, and most people don't consider sharing it to be a privacy intrusion. Via an anonymizing proxy, you can avoid divulging even that innocuous information.
How both your Friends list and page ratings affect stumble selection is described by the following pages:
Here's a quick summary of behavior:
The procedure to undo a rating differs depending on which version of the toolbar you use. Using the latest version of the Mozilla toolbar, simply click the relevant rating button a second time. The IE toolbar offers no mechanism to undo everything that happens when you rate a page "I like it!", but you can undo most things by rating the page "Not-for-me" then by deleting the item from your Bads list. If you're the first and only person to rate a page and you rate the page "Not-for-me" before its content has been surveyed by StumbleUpon, then the page won't be recommended to others. To delete an item from your Bads list:
The official faq includes items addressing the following topics:
StumbleUpon has published some tips to help users get the most out of services.
The "Stumble! Button, Friends, Fans and Rating" item of this FAQ links to some documents that offer more detail regarding the goals and mechanics of stumbling and rating.
Sponsors receive a green fans meter, as opposed to the default blue meter. The fraction of the meter that's colored indicates your number of fans relative to other stumblers in the community.
Your audience number indicates how many people 'stumble upon' sites rated by you. Your audience contains only people who have been active recently.
You can increase your audience by rating websites that other people will like, by signing up for all topics that interest you, and by getting more people to make you a Friend.
The following phenomena can cause your audience to decrease:
See also the related official FAQ item.
StumbleUpon.com webservers will store only a user's avatar image. However, any image featured on most webpages can be included in a blog entry. StumbleUpon offers two methods for including an image, a context menu method and a manual method.
Details of the context menu method differ depending on which version of the toolbar you use.
Using the IE toolbar:
Using the Mozilla toolbar:
Note that the commentary page omits images and omits entries consisting of only a photoblogged image. This prevents the commentary pages from becoming cluttered with duplicate images.
The second method for including an image in a blog entry or a webpage review is to craft an HTML IMG element manually. For example, this markup
<a href="http://www.stumbleupon.com/faq.html#promote" border=0><img src="http://www.stumbleupon.com/images/getstumbleupon.gif"></a>
See the "markup" item of this FAQ for more details regarding markup and rendering.
Beware that some websites disallow external linking to images (aka hotlinking). For example, some publishers prefer that content not be featured (and consume serving bandwidth) outside the context of the published page. Unless the page containing the image specifically mentions a prohibition on external linking, the best advice is to try and see. If external linking is disallowed, the served image may be moved, or an image with a notice about external linking may be substituted.
By joining a group you advertise your interest in a topic. A given group may have any sort of theme. Examples of themes include casual conversation, culinary exploration, an obscure interest, a social movement, an academic discipline, et cetera. Some groups focus more on collecting webpage recommendations via the Sites list, and others focus more on conversations via forum threads. Here are some details regarding groups:
The ignore feature allows one user to avoid associating with another user. To ignore a user, select the Ignore Me button on the user's profile. To unignore a user, use the Edit Ignored section at the bottom of the Network page of your profile. Here are some details regarding behavior when user Alice ignores user Bob:
You can control presentation using a subset of HTML. Here are some details regarding markup and rendering:
<img>elements, see the "images" item of this FAQ.
&[entity-name];" syntax, via the "
&#[char-code];" syntax or as a literal. However, upon editing, the text presented to be edited will contain the character as rendered rather than the originally supplied markup. Most of the time that isn't a problem, but it can be problematic for
<br>tags automatically), but
<br>tags must be entered explicitly to create line breaks in webpage reviews or About Me text.
onclick) of the aforementioned HTML elements cannot be used.
The orange RSS and RSS Comments icons at the bottom of the Blog page of each profile link to pages containing a machine-readable version of your recent blog entries and your Recent Sites. This facility can be used to monitor a set of blogs or to incorporate your StumbleUpon blog content into an external blog. Note that some privacy settings disable this feature.
To monitor a set of blogs, use a RSS news feed reader. A StumbleUpon RSS feed displays particularly well with the RSS Reader Panel extension for Mozilla Firefox, but virtually any news feed reader will work.
The procedure for incorporating your StumbleUpon blog content into an external blog depends on what software implements the external blog. For example, user Nog has published some notes that describe using the Magpie RSS parser to provide content for a PHP-based blog.
To assist stumble filtering, you should indicate language proficiency via the Languages Spoken field on the Prefs page of your profile.
In addition to stumble filtering, specifying a less common language may also help you to find ethnically similar users via the language description page. A language description page can be accessed via a URL of the following form:
To request that a language be added to the list of available languages, submit a request via the feedback form.
StumbleUpon uses standard title capitalization conventions for items in the Music, Movie, Books, TV and "Things I like" lists. In addition, the database uses a normalizing comparison when determining whether a user-specified item is new. The normalizing comparison ignores capitalization, punctuation and initial articles (such as "The"). If user Bob is the first to list the album "dark side of the moon" and user Alice subsequently lists the album "The Dark Side of the Moon", then the text "Dark Side of the Moon" (regardless whether that's most correct) will appear in Alice's favorite music list.
Each list can contain up to sixty-three items.
StumbleUpon offers a content-oriented advertising service via which anyone from a blogger to a shoe retailer can purchase a certain guaranteed number of views for a page. Here are some facts about how sponsored pages influence your stumbles:
When you're shown a sponsored page, the toolbar displays a button featuring a green-shirted person icon (). After the purchased number of views have occurred, a sponsored page behaves like any other stumble. That motivates page sponsors to create interesting and entertaining content. As commercial pages are frequently recommended by stumblers and non-commercial pages are frequently sponsored, you probably won't be able to distinguish sponsored stumbles from unsponsored stumbles based on content. Reappearing junk pages are probably caused by phenomena other than sponsored stumbles.
If you believe that sponsored pages negatively impact your stumbling, please recognize that they are necessary to keep the basic service free for the majority of users. As mentioned above, a sponsor can disable the feature.
If you're interested in sponsoring a page, see the pricing page for details.
Within fifteen minutes, a newly rated URL will be associated automatically with a stumble topic category. The subsystem for automatically categorizing has mixed success, and improvements are being developed. Manual categorizing augments automatic categorizing. Two types of manual categorizing exist. The person who first introduces a page to StumbleUpon has the option to preempt automated categorizing by selecting a topic on the commentary page for the stumble. The second sort of manual categorizing is available to anyone but is a two-tiered process. First, a user suggests an alternate topic by submitting a miscategorization report (aka miscat). Then, a set of system administrators and volunteers review miscats. Miscats are sent to those reviewers in order of decreasing popularity. A miscat for a popular page will generally be reviewed within twenty-four hours. The lead time for reviewing a miscat for a less popular page depends on the volume of miscats.
To submit a miscat:
Note that when a user selects a topic for stumbling, the Stumble! button will return pages in that topic category as well as highly rated pages in Related topics. Related topics are listed in the Related section of a topic page. (See the Animals topic page for an example.)
To submit a request for a new category:
When a user rates a page, StumbleUpon associates the rating with the URL for the page. A few phenomena can cause ratings to be misdirected, namely (A) content on a page can change, (B) a popular URL can be redirected, (C) a page can be removed or (D) a page can be served via a URL that is user- or session-specific.
Cases B and C can be the most problematic for users of the Stumble! button. A traditional standards-compliant website will return a 404 error when a page is removed. These well-behaved 404s are detected automatically in time. But often a website—particularly one managed by a hosting company—will redirect the old URL to an index page or a search page. Redirecting also occurs frequently when a domain name is purchased by another company. Rating "Not-for-me" on the ultimate target of the redirection doesn't affect the old URL, which allows the old URL to retain its high rating. Instead, select Menu->Report->Report 404 from the toolbar menu (which is available only for the Mozilla toolbar as of this writing). That reports both the ultimate target and the most recently served URL.
Case D occurs primarily on commercial websites. In one common implementation, a user is redirected from the requested URL to a URL including a user ID or a session ID. Ontologically, this is often appropriate if the page being served is customized to the user or the session. For example, Amazon serves different content to each user to customize the shopping experience. However, often a page contains little or no customized content and still is identified via a user- or session-specific URL. Unfortunately since each user sees a different URL, StumbleUpon can't track ratings for the static content.
Developers have solicited suggestions and, preferably, code contributions for tackling cases B, C and D.
Many services of StumbleUpon are still under active development. And the StumbleUpon developers appreciate feedback. Even a seemingly trivial bug deserves to be reported. Beginning a new thread in the Features forum or the Bugs forum is the primary means to raise an issue. Before starting a new thread, please try to avoid duplicating an issue report by scanning recent threads in those two forums and/or by searching those forums. Use one of the following checklists to help create a useful issue report:
For a bug, use this checklist:
For a feature request, use this checklist:
I would *love* to have more people submitting patches to stumbleupon. The mozilla toolbar source code is under MPL, the cvs is publicly available. I have already given 1 stumbler write access to CVS.
I have had a lot of people ask how they can see the code/contribute to the code. However only 2 people have ever submitted patches. I really appreciated their contributions, please send more!