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Hats are transferrable across sites! You read that correctly: this year, if you earn a hat on any site, you can wear it on any participating Stack Exchange site. This was one of our most asked-for feature requests after last year’s event, and it’s a great way for everyone to highlight their achievements on their favorite site across the network.

With this in mind, why it is not also possible to earn some hats by completing requirements across multiple sites? For instace, getting at least 3 answer with 5+ score? I would feel horrible to make up 10 questions just to earn Mr. Binx hat on SO. Althought, I asked few questions here and some on other sites.

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Because then hats would be too easy. The requirements are what they are. And Meta.SO and SO do cooperate; the Oh the Horror hat is awarded on SO for a Guru badge on Meta.SO. –  Martijn Pieters Dec 21 '13 at 13:24
    
As Martijn Pieters said in his comment, it would be too easy to get them. Also, if you have two answers on SO with 5+ score, and one on MSO with 5+, on which site would you get the hat? On SO or MSO? –  ProgramFOX Dec 21 '13 at 13:37
    
@ProgramFOX On the site where more answers were provided or it would be just earned on SE. It's not really important where you get a hat when it's tranferrable across sites. I don't see it any easier to get 3 answers with 5+ score on one site then on more sites. It still means you provided 3 good answers. –  Ondrej Janacek Dec 21 '13 at 14:05
    
He's right about Mr. Binx though IMO. I'd say 10 questions in 3 weeks on 1 site almost certainly indicates you haven't searched for answers. I've been here 4 months and I'm yet to come up with a single question that isn't already answered on SO.. Though thats a topic for another question entirely. –  OGHaza Dec 21 '13 at 14:05

1 Answer 1

up vote 8 down vote accepted

The ease or difficulty has nothing to do with it; we could just make the criteria slightly harder if we're going to open it up across sites.

The actual reason for not having the criteria take into account multi-site activity is much simpler: the vast majority of our users only have an account on one Stack Exchange site, so we wanted to make sure they were fully able to participate in Winter Bash. For those people who are active on multiple sites, however, we also wanted to provide a more unified network experience; hence the ability to wear hats everywhere that you only earned on one site.

I think the way we have it set up this year maximizes the fun for everyone; a lot can change in a year, though, so we'll see if it makes more sense next year to consider making hat criteria include activity from multiple sites. For this year, I'm afraid you're stuck with the way we already have it set up. It's perfectly okay to not earn every hat available.

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Ok, thank you for explanation. It was just an idea that strucked me when reviewing hats. –  Ondrej Janacek Dec 21 '13 at 17:02
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Perhaps you could consider for next year a few hats that can be earned by cross-site activity, in addition to the single-site activity hats. –  Bart van Ingen Schenau Dec 21 '13 at 17:09
    
"the vast majority of our users only have an account on one Stack Exchange site" So how far outside the norm am I with 21 site accounts? Only 8 have I actually earned points for... –  Austin French Dec 21 '13 at 21:38
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@AustinFrench You aren't as far as some… Of course, “the vast majority of our users only have an account on one Stack Exchange site” is true but disingenuous: SO alone has more accounts than all of the other sites combined — and of course adding the numbers for the other sites is a gross exaggeration since many of these are the same user with accounts on multiple sites. Laura: could we have actual statistics on the proportion of users on each site who only have an account on that site? –  Gilles Dec 22 '13 at 0:28

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