brownie points

Brownie point

noun Informal.
a credit toward advancement or good standing gained especially by currying favor.

Origin:
1960–65; from the point system based on good behavior and performance used by Brownies for advancement

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World English Dictionary
Brownie point
 
n
a notional mark to one's credit earned for being seen to do the right thing
 
[C20: from the mistaken notion that Brownie Guides earn points for good deeds]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

brownie points

Credit for a good deed, as in John earned a lot of brownie points for doing his boss's report for him. The term originated with the points earned for various achievements by the youngest group of the Girl Scouts, called Brownies. In the mid-1900s it was transferred to general use.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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