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Every other chat room works as expected.

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This happened to me once - I hit the request access button, but ultimately I think it sorted its self out. I'm not sure if I re-signed in or not as a sanity check. –  Grant Thomas Mar 19 '12 at 11:07
    
@Mr.Disappointment Hit the button after I took the screenshot ;) Didn't expect it to do anything, but since it was there... –  Yannis Mar 19 '12 at 11:08
    
'That was strange ...and this might be highly coincidental, but I posted a question on meta, realise my chat tab was no longer there (upon checking it had refreshed to the room list), and I was unable to see teachers, or use a direct link to it - I requested access to get the above screenshot before realising my account had been altered from Astronomy to SO.' Linky –  Grant Thomas Mar 19 '12 at 11:09
    
In other words, check your chat account's parent user (it currently says Area51) and change it back: chat.stackexchange.com/users/15752/yannis-rizos. You didn't happen to post there recently, did you? –  Grant Thomas Mar 19 '12 at 11:12
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Check that your chat parent user is set to a site where you are mod, else it will not work. –  Mad Scientist Mar 19 '12 at 11:12
    
Hmm - I'm getting kick out to the list of rooms. When I try to change my parent room I'm only getting Area 51 and the beta sites where I have accounts. No graduated sites and no sites where I'm a moderator. –  ChrisF Mar 19 '12 at 11:13
    
@Fabian That was it ;) For some weird reason my chat user was set to Area51 (of all places)... –  Yannis Mar 19 '12 at 11:17
    
It seems like my chat profile was randomly switched to another site too (From Gaming to Chinese). So weird. –  Yi Jiang Mar 19 '12 at 11:28
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The P.SE moderator room works differently. It's white list is based on explicit room ownership. TL works by checking you are a moderator on your parent site. –  ChrisF Mar 19 '12 at 11:58
    
I thought the first rule of TL was... –  Zhaph - Ben Duguid Mar 20 '12 at 8:08

1 Answer 1

up vote 12 down vote accepted

There was some failure earlier with regards to the list of all Q&A sites that chat maintains. I'm still digging for what exactly happened, but I'm not sure I'll be able to find the precise cause.

Whatever the issue was, it caused chat to not know about several sites. This caused these sites to be dropped from a user's account list, since we cross-check the user's accounts with the site list. The user's parent account would then be set to one on a site that we still do know about.

From now on, when this situation occurs (i.e. the API gives us a user account for a site we don't know about), we won't just swallow this fact (and account), but take it as a hint that something is ill with our data and a) force a reload of the sites data, and b) bail out and rather throw an exception than taking away a user's account.

I have also fixed up the accounts for moderators affected by this (since for them it's obviously important that the system knows they have a moderator account somewhere).

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FYI: This just happened to me this morning. Fortunately I recall that people have lost access to TL because their parent user changed, so I changed it back to Biblical Hermeneutics. For some reason, my "parent" was changed to Stack Overflow, a site I barely use anymore. Do we know why this happens? Should someone (me?) write another meta-question so that the problem gets tracked (and hopefully fixed)? –  Jon Ericson Feb 6 '13 at 17:34
    
@JonEricson Given tonight's happenings‌​, nothing would've surprised me today :) –  balpha Feb 6 '13 at 17:41

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