The words "profile" and "account" have been used interchangeably in multiple places across the network, but I am not sure if it is the right thing to do. Also, I could not find any official definition of "profile" and "account" given by SE.

Let's take a look at places where the words have been used interchangeably:

Can you please use consistent wording to avoid confusion?

I would like to quote something related from Stacks:


Pick names early and implement them consistently. Consistent language reduces the number of things your users have to learn or remember. If multiple names already exist, identify and eliminate them.

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  • Feel free to edit the post to add more places where the words are used interchangeably. Sep 11 at 16:41
  • "Profile" is in the glossary, but "account" isn't. Sep 11 at 23:38
  • 5
    Internally, profile is supposed to refer to a per-site profile (e.g. a Stack Overflow profile) whereas account is the behind-the-scenes network account that links everything together. It is not possible to delete an account - you can only delete all the profiles attached to it. But trying to get consistency in those terms has been an uphill battle. They both exist as two separate things that need to be identified separately and it is confusing when they are used interchangeably - they shouldn't be.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Sep 12 at 7:24
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    @animuson we can't fix the world, and agree it's nearly impossible to explain to everyone the actual meaning of "account" and "profile" in Stack Exchange. But that is not the point here. At least make it consistent in the Help Center where you control the content. For example, since we can't delete our account, title here should be "How do I delete my user profile". Sep 12 at 7:54
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    @This_is_NOT_a_forum so now that we know for sure what each means, we should edit the glossary. Sep 12 at 7:55
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    @This_is_NOT_a_forum done, but you might spot things to fix. Sep 12 at 8:20


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