I received the Meta Academia’s only Announcer badge for linking this question. If I am not very much mistaken, the only place where I shared this question was this comment on a popular question. According to this answer I should not be able to receive the Announcer badge for this, as I only shared the link within the SE network.

Assuming that nobody else shared my link as it is, this is an unintended behaviour. Given that this has not happened to me with other cross-site links before, in particular the one in this comment on another popular question, I guess that the combination of a link to a per-site meta and users without an account on Academia clicking the link is responsible for this. For the same reason, I also assume that this might be a different issue from missing REFERRER headers, as already described here.

1 Answer 1


This is not a bug.

Yes, your link won't count if people clicking on it are coming from a Stack Exchange site. But the only way for Stack Exchange to detect this is by looking at the Referer (sic) header that a browser sends with the request. But because some people feel that that header reveals private browsing behaviour the header is often filtered at the client or firewall level.

Then there is the possibility others copied your link and shared it further, on social media for example. And the post itself could be reposted elsewhere (with attribution), including your comment. Etc.

In other words, there are still plenty of ways people could find your link, click on it, and Stack Exchange failing to detect the link was sourced on Stack Exchange itself. In all those cases the link visit is counted towards your badge.

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