I often see the word "unregistered" as a part of a nickname:

greenmonster15 (unregistered)

An example — https://rpg.stackexchange.com/users/46936/greenmonster15

What does that mean, is it just a somebody who are not registered on the site?

Why they are allowed to post questions then? If a person doesn't bother registering, they probably won't put more efforts to the question itself. Usually they post a couple of vague phrases, or an unintelligible wall of text, and then disappear. Community can salvage their question thereafter, but is it worth it?

Here are examples of questions from "unregistered":

In the latter example the question was closed, then edited and reopened by the community, not the original poster.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ [Related] “Why should I create an account?” (Help Center) \$\endgroup\$ Jul 21, 2018 at 15:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie should I ask two separate questions? — 1. What is "unregistered" account (a pure support one) and 2. Can/should we allow unregistered users to post questions? \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Jul 21, 2018 at 15:49
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @enkryptor Asking the second one isn't very meaningful given we have no control over whether they do -- we may as well ask if we can/should allow the wind to blow and rain to fall. Consider that Stack Overflow Inc, given all the data it has available on users and moderation, hasn't seen it necessary to disable the unregistered user feature, or hasn't seen its costs outweight its benefits. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 21, 2018 at 17:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ @doppelgreener this is not obvious. Anonymous ("unregistered") access might be a site-dependent feature. \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Jul 21, 2018 at 18:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @doppelgreener apparently, we can en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weather_modification \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Jul 21, 2018 at 19:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm changing the title back to the original, as the answer to the newer version is flatly "no" -- but it's useful to have a Q&A on what unregistered users are. (I get you're concerned and frustrated, but that feature's going to remain on unless there's a demonstrated very, very good reason to turn it off--and a lot of perfectly good questions come from unregistered users too.) \$\endgroup\$ Jul 22, 2018 at 11:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ We get lots and lots of questions from unregistered accounts. Thousands already, I would hazard. Is the intention to update this post each time a new one is found? \$\endgroup\$ Aug 8, 2018 at 5:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie why do you ask, is it a bad thing? rpg.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/8163 \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Aug 8, 2018 at 5:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ I fail to see the point. We have multiple thousands of questions from unregistered accounts. What’s the point of trying to list them here? And how does it change the answer? Why are you adding more? \$\endgroup\$ Aug 8, 2018 at 5:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie the intention was to provide a few examples of low quality questions from unregistered \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Aug 8, 2018 at 5:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ Why are you adding more? — because I want to. Why shouldn't I? \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Aug 8, 2018 at 5:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, but that was already accomplished. Since that was accomplished well enough to answer the question, and the answer’s been accepted, why does it need to be updated multiple times? Bumping usefully is okay. Pointless bumping can become a problem. I’m trying to understand what value these additions have — their value is not obvious. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 8, 2018 at 5:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie I added more examples because I think it is a systemic issue, not solitary instances. Why do you ask? \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Aug 8, 2018 at 6:02
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ “What are unregistered members and why are they allowed to post” is a [support] question that has been answered. Nothing more will happen. If you want to say “we should not have unregistered users and here’s why, also here is evidence of the systemic problem they cause”, that’s a topic for a new [discussion] meta. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 8, 2018 at 6:06

1 Answer 1


They truly aren't registered on the site (yet) (technically).

In order to decrease the barrier to entry, Stack Exchange offers a super frictionless flow for posting questions to brand new users: you can post a question or answer simply by entering a username and email. An "unregistered" account then gets created for you tied to a cookie in your browser, and you're sent an email invitation (I think) to complete your registration and make a normal fully registered account. If you wipe your browser at this point, you lose the cookie and access to your unregistered account.

This flow is only offered in limited circumstances. You won't be able to use it from your PC since Stack Exchange will recognise that it's associated with a registered user, and suspected spam origins don't seem to be able to use it either. Stack Exchange in both circumstances will gate you by making you properly sign in or register an account.

Unregistered users also do not show up in user searches.

This frictionless flow exists because Stack Exchange wants people to post their first questions and first answers, and not get turned away at the door because they don't want to go through the effort of making an account yet. Later, once they decide they'd like to make a full account, they can do so. Many do.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Can we turn off this "super frictionless flow"? Should we? \$\endgroup\$
    – enkryptor
    Jul 21, 2018 at 14:33
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    \$\begingroup\$ @enkryptor That's not up to us, and Stack Overflow Inc seems to still think it's a good idea still. As a diamond moderator most of the trouble I have to deal with is from registered users so I don't see a problem with it from this POV. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 21, 2018 at 14:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ This is one of the reasons to not be shy about voting on new-account content—accounts are cheap and anonymous, and not the first line of content control (like on many sites). The first line of content control is our votes, and those votes control what those easy-to-get accounts can do. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 21, 2018 at 15:37

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