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I was browsing badges right now, and saw that the Analytical badge has been retired. I tried searching how to get one, but found out that it cannot be obtained now - thanks to this question.

Well, I was shocked to see that on clicking on that badge, there were several users who had obtained the badge recently - as recently as 3 hours ago. Is that a bug, or is there some hidden way to obtain the badge still?

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2  
Shocked? Really? –  Bart Jul 9 '13 at 14:08
    
In Damith case it seems to be a bug on all his badges: stackoverflow.com/users/2558060/… all appear to be earned one day ago. –  fedorqui Jul 9 '13 at 14:09
    
Account merge perhaps @fedorqui? The same seems to be the case for Ethan Cabiac... –  Bart Jul 9 '13 at 14:10
    
Could be... or such an intense day :) –  fedorqui Jul 9 '13 at 14:10
    
The last four badges show different earning days, though. –  aksh1t Jul 9 '13 at 14:11

1 Answer 1

up vote 16 down vote accepted

This user got around 20 badges in the same instant, see his badges activity filter.

This happened due to account merge, in such case the badges are awarded in the time of merging. This has been confirmed by a moderator. (who can see merge actions)

Bottom line, the old account having the badge has been merged into his main, newer, account and all badges have been re-calculated.

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Damn it, for some time I thought I could get myself one of the retired shinies! –  aksh1t Jul 9 '13 at 14:14
    
Nope, not unless you find old account of yours with the badge and merge it with your existing account. :) –  Shadow Wizard Jul 9 '13 at 14:16
    
The pattern that you noticed about all the badges being awarded same time is repeated for all other users. 1, 2, 3 –  aksh1t Jul 9 '13 at 14:20
    
Yep, on second thought account merge is the only sensible option, edited to reflect this. –  Shadow Wizard Jul 9 '13 at 14:50
    
I was checking today the badges site and I've seen that the Analytical badge was awarded. It cannot happen by account merging, because there is one account which got this badge recently and has only one reputation. –  Irgendw Pointer Oct 3 '13 at 14:36
    
@IrgendwPointer guess you mean this user? Reputation is not relevant, the old account (that did get the badge) might have 0 reputation. The "member for" says 6 months. –  Shadow Wizard Oct 3 '13 at 14:40
    
@ShadowWizard tha badges are still being awarded.. –  Mr. Alien Apr 14 at 10:56
    
@Mr.Alien no. Only as result of merging. –  Shadow Wizard Apr 14 at 14:29
    
@ShadowWizard got it... –  Mr. Alien Apr 14 at 14:30
    
@Shadow I can confirm that these are from account merges. –  animuson Dec 15 at 1:39
    
Thanks @animuson I've edited the post. –  Shadow Wizard Dec 15 at 14:32
    
You can also get merged by a bot. Which is mostly just annoying. But there is hope! –  bjb568 Dec 17 at 0:57

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