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So I got to Bicycles.SE for the first time. I've got a Stack exchange Open ID and a cookie for one of the other SE sites verifying that I have said Open ID. I'm plenty familiar with the system. Why am I not asked to login by the standard top-bar notification (like the one that says "Hello Ben, you have been Logged in!") rather than given the same notification a user is given when they've never visited a SE site before?

I perfectly understand why we don't auto login to all SE sites, but shouldn't a new SE site recognize that I have the cookie for SE and at least offer to let me login (like a site I've already used does when said cookie is present) instead of treating me like a newbie? The first thing I do at every new SE site is navigate to the login menu. This change would let that notification message offer me a quick link to login instead of a link to the FAQ (which is too often the same FAQ I've read 10 times now as an SE user).

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When I saw the title and summary, at first it sounded like you wanted SE to display a login page to unregistered users, instead of the list of questions. I'm assuming that's not what you mean. (Maybe consider editing the title and/or first paragraph to clarify that?) If you're just asking about replacing the link in the dropdown banner when the site detects an SE cookie, I could get behind this. –  David Z Oct 15 '11 at 4:50
    
I mean "Me" as a logged in user of course, I'll modify the question –  Ben Brocka Oct 15 '11 at 4:52
    
The same treatment should be given to the "Welcome to chat, you'll need 15 rep to talk here!" page, that then proceeds to inform me that I've been logged in and need to refresh. –  Kevin Vermeer Nov 4 '11 at 1:36
    
@KevinVermeer I've just recently noticed this as well, it's just an awkward experience when the site treats you like you don't exist and then you log in and suddenly you're a real person, when the site has the potential to check that cookie and at least offer to let you log in –  Ben Brocka Nov 6 '11 at 2:30

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