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A lot of websites that require or encourage logins - like Stack Overflow - have been using Facebook Connect to authenticate users. What do people think about adding a "login via Facebook" option, in addition to the current Open ID options?

This could also allow posting Stack Overflow-related data to people's walls.

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up vote 12 down vote accepted

Really, what is the need? There is already a large range of OpenID providers out there (Google, AOL, WordPress, etc.), and in the unlikely case they don't have any of those providers, they can quickly register for a myOpenID account.

I may as well also state what others will likely repeat: StackOverflow is not a social networking site, thus why should it be tied to Facebook in any way?

Of course, there's also the technical issue: adding another login system independent of OpenID would unnecessarily complicate the server backend hugely.

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It's not about making SO a social networking site, but about allowing people to manage, use and propagate their identity in a manner of their choosing. Discounting a site that is an identity provider for hundreds of millions of people isn't really a way of (in Jeff's words) "improving the Internet". – casperOne Sep 20 '11 at 21:12

It's possible that DotNetOpenAuth, the library we use for authenticating, might support Facebook Connect at some point ... so at least the technical underpinnings for this happening would be in place

Update: facebook now supports oauth 2.0 so we added them as a login provider.

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What about adding Steam also?… – juan Jul 24 '10 at 15:30
Jeff, as far as I can tell DotNetOpenAuth does not (yet) support oauth 2.0. Did you use some other library for that? Thanks. – pbz Aug 4 '10 at 18:59
Can you comment on @pbz's question? – UpTheCreek Mar 3 '12 at 15:05

I think you're forgetting that stackoverflow is an engine, and not just a site for technically oriented people.

As such, should their hosted platform take off, and people start using it to create communities for say crop-dusting, or sheep collecting; then those people might not always have an OpenID, yet more than likely have a Facebook account.

@Noldorin - as much as I understand the issue that you raise, that by having another API and more lines of code to support, the chances for error and workload increase. Although this doesn't negate the popularity of Facebook Connect over that of OpenID in its raw form.

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StackExchange is the engine for customer sites, not StackOverflow. There is a request for Facebook Connect already ( and planned support for plain email login in the next beta – Rich Seller Jan 12 '10 at 13:46
My apologies. I got my terms wrong. You're correct :) – romant Jan 13 '10 at 13:42

I agree completely with all that's been said. We all need to be careful and not be overly dependent on Facebook. What would happen if your Facebook account or one of you client's accounts was removed?

I know of many accounts that have been removed because of trademark claims, even while the shutdown account was in the right.

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