Quora is a question-and-answer site where questions are asked, answered, edited, and organized by its community of users in the form of opinions. Its publisher, Quora Inc., is based in Mountain View, California. The company was founded in June 2009, and the website was made available to the public on June 21, 2010. Users can collaborate by editing questions and suggesting edits to answers that have been submitted by other users. In September 2018, Quora reported hitting 300 million monthly users.
Quora was co-founded by former Facebook employees Adam D'Angelo and Charlie Cheever in June 2009. When asked why they chose the name, Cheever stated, "I associate it with 'quorum' or public congregation. We spent a few hours brainstorming and writing down all the ideas that we could think of. The closest competition that Quora had was 'Quiver' but we eventually settled on Quora".
Quora's user base has been growing quickly since 2010. As of April 2017, Quora has claimed to have 190 million monthly unique visitors, up from 100 million a year earlier.
In June 2011, Quora redesigned the navigation and usability of its website. Quora made an official iOS app on September 29, 2011, followed by an Android app on September 5, 2012.
Google Search popularity of Quora over 5 years
In September 2012, co-founder Charlie Cheever stepped down as co-operator of the company, taking an advisory role.
In January 2013, Quora launched a blogging platform allowing users to post non-answer content on their profiles.
Quora launched a full-text search of questions and answers on its website on March 20, 2013 and extended the feature to mobile devices in late May 2013. It also announced in May 2013 that all its usage metrics had tripled relative to the same time in the prior year. In November 2013 Quora introduced a feature called Stats to allow all Quora users to see summary and detailed statistics regarding how many people had viewed, upvoted, and shared their questions and answers.TechCrunch reported that, although Quora had no immediate plans for monetization, they believed that search ads would likely be their eventual source of revenue.
In April 2014, Quora raised $80 million from Tiger Global at a reported $900 million valuation. Quora was also one of the members of the Summer 2014 Y Combinator batch.
Quora acquired the online community website Parlio in March 2016. In April of that year, the company also began a limited rollout of advertising on the site.
In October 2016, Quora launched a Spanish version of its website to the public. Following this announcement, in early 2017, a beta version of Quora in French was announced. In May 2017, beta versions in German and Italian were introduced. In September 2017 a beta version in Japanese was launched. In April 2018, Beta versions in Hindi, Portuguese, and Indonesian were launched. Currently, additional versions in Bengali, Marathi, Tamil, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, and Dutch are planned.
In April 2017, Quora was reported to have received Series D funding with a valuation of $1.8 billion.
In September 2018, Quora reported hitting 300 million monthly users.
Real name policy
Quora allows users to create user profiles with visible real names, photos, site use statistics, etc., which users can set to private. In August 2012 blogger Ivan Kirigin pointed out that acquaintances and followers could see his activity, including which questions he had looked at. In response, Quora stopped showing question views in feeds later that month. By default, Quora exposes its users' profiles, including their real names, to search engines. Users can disable this feature.
Quora has developed its own proprietary algorithm to rank answers, which works similarly to Google PageRank. Quora uses Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud technology to host the servers that run its website.
Currently, Quora has different ways to recommend questions to users:
- Home feed questions recommendations: In this method, each user will have a timeline that is personalized to their preferences. Quora also provides "interesting" questions that are relevant to the user's preferences. This will lead to the user either answering that question or refers another user to better answer it.
- Daily Digest: In this method, Quora sends a daily email containing a set of questions with one answer that is deemed the best answer given certain ranking requirements.
- Related Questions: In this method, whether the user is logged in or not, a set of questions that relates to the current questions will be recommended and displayed on the side. This will help the user navigate through the questions and find what is more relevant to their preference.
- Ask to Answer: This feature enables the user to request another user's answer to a question that they feel is fit or better suited to answer that question.
Quora supports various features to moderate content posted by users. The majority of content moderation is done by the users, though staff can also intervene.
- Upvote/Downvote - Users can rank answers based on how relevant or helpful they found the answers to be. This feature helps maintain the quality of content posted online. The more upvotes an answer receives, the higher it is ranked, and it shows up on top of the searches related to the question. If an answer is ranked poorly, it is "collapsed" and will not show up in people's feeds.
- Report Answer - Users can report plagiarism, harassment, spam, factually incorrect articles, etc. This keeps sub-standard content under check.
- Suggest Edits - Users make suggestions to improve an article by proposing changes to it. The proposed changes are also made visible to the original author of the question or answer and can be either approved and published or rejected.
Top Writers Program
In November 2012, Quora introduced the Top Writers Program as a way to recognize individuals who had made especially valuable content contributions to the site and encourage them to continue. About 150 writers each year are chosen out of 200 million monthly unique visitors. This has inspired both young and experienced writers. Top writers are invited to occasional events and receive gifts such as branded clothing items and books. The company believes that by cultivating a group of core users who are particularly invested in the site, the program creates a feedback loop of user engagement.
Quora World Meetup
Quora World Meetup started in 2017 as a tradition to Quora readers and writers to come know themselves, network and have fun. Quora World Meetups are organised by group of Quora contributors with a designated lead and as a contribution from Quora they usually send branded swags, stickers to the attendees.
According to Quora, they defined the World Meetups as "This is our way of celebrating the global growth of Quora, and all of the readers and writers who have made it possible."
The last meetup had nearly 3,000 writers from over cities and the 2018 World Meetups will come up from June 20-25. All other informations about the Meetups can be found on The Quora Blog.
Quora was reviewed extensively by the media in 2010. According to Robert Scoble, Quora succeeded in combining attributes of Twitter and Facebook. Later, in 2011, Scoble criticized Quora for being a "horrid service for blogging" and, although a decent question and answer website, not substantially better than competitors.
In 2014 Quora attracted controversy for using robots.txt to ask crawlers such as the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine to not index or archive the site. Their stated reason is that the Wayback APIs as of 2016 does not give users a way to censor answers that they may regret previously posting. Critics have raised concerns about the fate of Quora's data if the site ever goes offline and recommended Stack Overflow as an easily archived alternative.
After question details were removed in August 2017, Quora was highly criticized for doing so. According to some users, the removal of question details limited the ability to submit personal questions and other questions requiring question details. According to an official product update announcement, the removal of question details was made to emphasize canonical questions.
As of February 28, 2018, according to Alexa Internet, the United States makes up the largest user base at 37.1%, followed by India at 19.2%, with an overall global site ranking of 136.
||Quora raises $11 million in a series A, with Benchmark Capital as an investor|
||Quora announces that it will open up to the public|
||Marc Bodnick leaves Elevation Partners to join Quora|
||Quora chooses C++ over C for its high-performance services|
||Quora introduces video to its Q&A pages|
||Quora introduces Credits for asking-to-answer questions|
||Quora introduces threaded comments and comment voting|
||Quora raises $50 million in a series B, with Peter Thiel and Adam D'Angelo as investors|
||Co-founder Charlie Cheever leaves|
||Quora introduces Top Writers program|
||Quora introduces blogs|
||Quora introduces a policy eliminating image-only answers.|
||Quora raises $80 million in a series C at a $900 million valuation, with Tiger Global Management and Y Combinator as investors|
||Quora announces bounty system, offering financial bounties for the best answer (selected by the question asker) on select questions.|
||Quora acquires Parlio, an online Q&A site started by Wael Ghonim.|
||Quora announces that it will start out testing advertisements, on a small number of question pages.|
||Marc Bodnick, Quora's public face and leader of its business and moderation team, announces that he is leaving the company.
||Quora announces support for the Spanish language.|
||Kelly Battles announced as new chief financial officer (CFO).|
||Quora raises $85 million in a series D at $1.8 billion valuation, with Collaborative Fund and Y Combinator as investors|
||Quora launches Video Answers.|
||Quora introduces Partner Program.|
||Quora launches the ability for users to share links.|
||Quora hits 300 million monthly users|
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