In the official Stack Overflow blog post What a very bad day at work taught me about building Stack Overflow’s community the Director of Public Q&A at Stack Overflow, Ms. Sara Chipps described herself as

“long time Stacker (I’ve always wanted to say that!).”

Does she meant that she belongs to Stack Overflow community for a long time?

Is “Stacker” a common term for Stack Overflow members or just invented by her?

I checked Wikipedia, but didn’t find such a meaning. (I don’t think that she meant “a machine used in bulk material handling”.)

I also tried to search SE meta, but search https://meta.stackexchange.com/search?q=“Stacker” doesn’t distinguish Stacker and Stack and returns too many results.( Update: my Safari somehow inserted wrong double quotes and search with correct double quotes https://meta.stackexchange.com/search?tab=newest&q="stacker" works ,thanks for Mari-Lou A comment)

UPDATE re reasons not to close the question:

Robert Longson suggested that the question is a duplicate of “The Many Memes of Meta”. I searched all 3 pages of answers and didn’t find any word “Stacker”. The search https://meta.stackexchange.com/search?tab=newest&q="stacker" returns only 14 results and “The Many Memes of Meta” is not in the list. Similar search for “Stackers” returns 22 pages, but again no “The Many Memes of Meta”. The search for "stacker" meme returns the “The Many Memes of Meta”, but only because it doesn’t distinguish Stacker and Stack.

Someone suggested that the question is “off topic”. According to https://meta.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic questions about Stack Exchange are on topic. Information published on Stack Overflow blog about how Stack Overflow/Stack Exchange members/employees are referred is about Stack Exchange.


3 Answers 3


It's become the term for people who work for Stack Overflow. It was informally used until recently but our new CEO loves the term and it's becoming more prevalent in internal communication.

As far as I'm aware, it's not been used regularly to refer to users of the network.

Sara started working here in 2018, about a week before my own start date. That said, she was one of the earliest members of SO and has a user number to match (4140, to be exact). For comparison, Jon Skeet is user number 22656.

  • 4
    Just like how "Googler" isn't used by people who frequently Google things, but for those who work for Google. Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 18:29
  • 1
    @JJJ I'm not quite sure why it can't be both? We definitely use it internally to refer to everyone who works here... I'm not comfortable showing an example of it in public. Most of our staff aren't devs, so (if it were only used with full stack devs) it'd be inappropriate to open an all-company email with "Hello Stackers,"... but we use it generally for everyone, so it's unrelated to the type of developer.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 19:23
  • 1
    I think we’re confusing each other, @JJJ - it is used for the entire company. I received such an email yesterday.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 19:31
  • 1
    @Catija, could you please clarify the timeline to answer my question, was the term introduced by Sara? Was the term informally used before she become the director, or start to used it only recently and now the new CEO likes it and made it more official? Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:16
  • 1
    @MichaelFreidgeim As far as I'm aware, the term existed prior to Sara's being hired. She seems to be using it to mean users but, as I say in the answer, I'm unaware of any official usage to refer to members of the site. I'm not sure why she used it that way.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:31
  • 6
    Sara didn’t use the term for “work for Stack Overflow.“. She started to work for Stack Overflow relatively recent, and by using “long time Stacker“ , she used the term incorrectly. Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:34
  • 1
    @MichaelFreidgeim Yes?
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:36
  • @Catija, my last comment wasn’t a reply to your clarification, I wrote it at the same time as you published your comment. Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:53
  • 6
    @Catija It may have gone largely unnoticed to you (:-)), but there have been a few trust issues between the community and StackExchange staff. If Stacker is a term used by StackExchange staff, the term "long time Slacker" is a misrepresentation.
    – Alex
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 20:53
  • 2
    @Jaco Sara is rightfully able to call herself a “long-time [member of SO]” ... she has a four-digit user number. I’m unaware of why she used the term in that specific situation. Perhaps there are subgroups of SO who use the term... maybe she got confused because it is used internally... a slip up. I can understand your interpretation... I don’t really have a way to respond to it.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 21:01
  • 2
    There is no need to respond @Catija. It was a playful comment to highlight that giving each other the benefit of the doubt is a two way thing. Once this is lost, it becomes much harder to keep a community alive.
    – Alex
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 22:20
  • 1
    @SonictheReinstateMonica-hog, I don’t think that comparison with Google is correct. For Google the main asset is software, created by “Googlers”.For Stack Overflow the main asset is Q&A database created (and continue to populate) by the community. I hope SO management doesn’t have plans to replace community with “Stackers” to answer the questions. Anyway they can enjoy to name themselves as they want. Pity that they consider themselves so far from the community. Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 1:01
  • 4
    Comparison to Jon Skeet by the user number doesn’t add extra respect to Sara. He earned more reps in a shorter time :) Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 4:12
  • 1
    @MichaelFreidgeim The comparison wasn’t intended to be about extra respect. It was specifically to indicate an extremely well-known member who many assume to have been here since the beginning. Sara is talking about being a long-term member and I’m trying to put that in context.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 27, 2019 at 12:06

No, it's not commonly used (anymore - Mari-Lou A found some references, mostly from 10 years ago). Otherwise somebody would have put it in the Stack Exchange Glossary - Dictionary of Commonly-Used Terms already.

I'm not aware of any special term Stack Exchange users regularly use to describe themselves, other than generic ones like "Stack Overflow member".

  • 29
    In essence, it's like grown-ups awkwardly trying to imitate youth language. Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 12:33
  • 12
    It seems to me there is some kind of disconnect between them and us. We, the users, don't use that word. They, the company staff, use it. It's like we and they live in two separate worlds. No wonder this whole thing still goes on. When will it stop so we can go back to the peaceful life again? Sigh.
    – Nobody
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 14:45
  • 1
    My anecdotal experience would agree. I've been active on the site since 2011, and never heard the term (nor would I ever use it.)
    – berry120
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 17:43

To add some more context to what Catija wrote, I never heard the term "Stacker" until CEO Prashanth Chandrasekar introduced it in 2019 after he joined the company. Prashanth had recently left Rackspace, where it seems that employees were known as "Rackers", so "Stackers" was a comfortable term for the CEO. I especially remembering heavy use (and some term confusion) at the company meetup in late 2019 where almost all of us met Prashanth in person for the first time. It took the rest of the company some time to get used to (though anyone hired since then — which at this point is most of the company — was introduced to the term as part of their onboarding).


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .