On most sites including the main Stack Overflow site, Community user has no favorites. So far so good.

However today I noticed that on the SharePoint site it got 26 questions marked as favorite.

If favorites owned by users who get deleted are "transferred" to the Community user we should have seen LOTS of favorites on Stack Overflow where I'm pretty sure users get deleted frequently.

Any insights on this are welcome.

  • 6
    Mods there merging user accounts to Community? – ale Apr 10 '13 at 13:04
  • 26
    One more sign that Community is attaining sentience. We all knew it would happen eventually. – yannis Apr 10 '13 at 13:04
  • 6
    @Yannis - Community took over Anna Lear earlier this month, though only for a few hours, so I'd say it is scarier than you think! – Oded Apr 10 '13 at 13:06
  • 1
    @AlEverett Mods can't merge user accounts anymore, and back when we did I don't think it was possible to merge an account into Community. – yannis Apr 10 '13 at 13:06
  • @Yannis: It was just a blind guess, hence the question mark. – ale Apr 10 '13 at 13:07
  • 3
    @AlEverett Hm, now that I think about it, it probably was possible to merge accounts into Community. I mentioned doing something like that in chat when we could still merge accounts (a bad joke), and the next week the abillity was removed from mods... Could have been a coincidence, but... Hm... – yannis Apr 10 '13 at 13:09
  • @Yannis - Some people can still merge accounts to Community - devs and other employees. – Oded Apr 10 '13 at 13:16
  • 2
    I knew you were the one to blame @Oded, just didn't want to say it out loud ;) – yannis Apr 10 '13 at 13:18
  • @Yannis - Can't say I ever merged an account into Community - I'm sure I'd recall that. – Oded Apr 10 '13 at 13:19
  • @Oded is it possible to find user according to list of favorite questions? If so maybe you can find the user who got "eaten up"? :-) – Shadow Wizard is Vaccinating Apr 10 '13 at 13:58
  • @ShaWizDowArd - Might be possible. Might look into it if I have some time. – Oded Apr 10 '13 at 14:07
  • 1
    @Oded: I had thought that Anna Lear had changed her name to Community on April Fools Day. Did that happen automatically? If it did happen automatically, then I am sure that it was triggered after she tagged Jon Skeet Facts as jon-skeet on my request. Jon Skeet has got the power to rename anyone as Community? If so, this fact should certainly go into Jon Skeet Facts ;-) – Aditya Apr 10 '13 at 16:25
  • 1
    @Oded had some time? 150 easy rep if you did. :P – Shadow Wizard is Vaccinating Jun 2 '13 at 18:01
  • @ShaWizDowArd - Frankly, I don't have lots of insight into this (ATM)... perhaps once I do ;) – Oded Jun 2 '13 at 18:01
  • 1
    @Aditya Of course it happened automatically. You don't really think I'm a real human, do you? – Adam Lear Jun 2 '13 at 18:45

The SharePoint site was originally SharePoint Overflow, a SE 1.0 site. As it was not possible for a moderator to merge* a user into Community [1]** and the favorite votes were created before the current site existed; the most likely explanation is that abandoned favorite votes were accidentally associated with Community when the data from the original site was imported into the new SharePoint.SE site.

Given that most sites don't have SE 1.0 beginnings, this would explain why you don't observe Community favoriting questions elsewhere on the network.

* back when moderators could merge
** mod-only

  • 1
    But some of the favourites are newer questions, from 2011 - so isn't it contradicting this theory? – Shadow Wizard is Vaccinating Jun 2 '13 at 19:58
  • 1
    The SharePoint site didn't enter private beta until 2011-04, and all of the favorited questions (and their favorite votes) were posted before that (some of them have had activity since then though, which is shown as the date on the Community user's favorite view). – Tim Stone Jun 2 '13 at 20:03
  • Nick Craver confirmed for me that this is indeed the most likely explanation, given the dates. – Oded Jun 3 '13 at 11:43
  • @Oded cheers, think we can safely put this one to rest. +165 for Tim! :) – Shadow Wizard is Vaccinating Jun 6 '13 at 7:47
  • 2
    What about Skeptics though? The Community User has a star on this question. – JAL Feb 21 '17 at 16:17
  • @JAL My guess based on the timeline would be that it was favorited when it was tweeted. Skeptics did exist as a SE 1.0 site but obviously that question came a while after the new site was started (and I'm not sure anything was migrated anyway) – Tim Stone Feb 21 '17 at 16:32
  • No idea if that behaviour was expected at the time, though – Tim Stone Feb 21 '17 at 16:33
  • Why is it still accumulating them after Feb 21 `17? – jcolebrand Jan 21 at 0:19

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