I've hidden my Earth Science community from the "regular" network profile.

Community hidden

But whenever I go on Area 51, it says that I'm active in that community.

Community visible

Is there a workaround? Why does it not universally hide them in the first place?

  • 6
    In the hidden community page we do caution that it is not a true privacy setting and that your network activity will still be visible in some places.
    – Oded
    Apr 23, 2015 at 14:19
  • 1
    @Oded is right, this isn't a bug, though might fit as feature request. Apr 23, 2015 at 14:54
  • 8
    @Oded If it is not meant for privacy (even with only weak guarantees), what is that feature actually good for? I can't see any use for it at the moment, as the connection between profiles is still easily visible via the network profile and the A51 site as described in this post. Maybe I'm missing something, but privacy seems to be the main reason one would want to hide connections between profiles. Apr 23, 2015 at 15:03
  • 2
    It is for people who do not want to prominently display certain posts/communities on their profile page (say they link them on their CV for prospective employers). Most people who visit the profile page of a user do not go to area51 or the network profile of such a user. It is for those casual browsers of the profile and those who do not know the network that the feature is designed for (i.e. they will not see these posts/communities and will not be wise to area51 and the network profile), @MadScientist
    – Oded
    Apr 23, 2015 at 15:13
  • 1
    @MadScientist I strongly agree. StackExchange owning everything I post is a bit pushy, but if it refuses to keep one community hidden for my privacy, I'm done.
    – unbindall
    Apr 28, 2015 at 1:40
  • 4
    What's the point of hiding it if we get to see the hidden communities? Jul 6, 2015 at 15:31
  • 4
    You are totally right this is wrong. Just another question that shows the uselessness of this feature. Sep 4, 2015 at 20:34
  • 4
    @MadScientist: The feature is privacy theater. It looks impressive, but anyone can stumble across your involvement in a couple clicks or by accidentally hitting the wrong site. Actual functionality is akin to putting a sticker that says "This is not my diary" on your journal. Sep 5, 2015 at 2:52
  • 1
    I don't know how or if this ties in, but Area 51 even shows profiles that don't exist any more, like here. So it's not drawing its info only from the active network profile. Whatever is causing this might also come into play with hidden communities, so it's something for devs to check. Feb 28, 2016 at 20:51
  • Since we don't have any current plans to work on Area 51, having this tagged status-review seems like it might be confusing, so I've removed the tag.
    – Catija
    Feb 9, 2023 at 15:23
  • @Catija fair, but status-declined would be better, so people know it won't be done. As there's no indication "This request was under review" anywhere, people will think this didn't get attention while it's not correct. Feb 9, 2023 at 16:19

1 Answer 1


As a workaround, you can always create multiple accounts. Jeff Atwood says this, so it should be authoritative. You would just have to deal with losing your rep and not getting the initial +100.

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