Followed the Area 51 proposal for this site before it entered the commitment phase

None of these sites had Area 51 proposals.

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    This is related to an apparent mistake in rolling out the badge, as discussed here. Commented Dec 8, 2010 at 18:11
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    Yes. They teach an important lesson to people who try to earn every last badge.
    – Pops
    Commented Dec 8, 2010 at 18:17

1 Answer 1


In addition to Popular Demand's "funny because it is true" comment ..

[Precognitive badge] teaches an important lesson to people who try to earn every last badge.

The Precognitive badge appears in the badge list on every site to announce the presence of Area 51, and its primary function.

Since Area 51 is itself about creating new sites that don't exist yet, the thought process is supposed to be:

hmm, I can't get [the precognitive badge] on this site, but I could get it on some hypothetical future site I might be interested in.

Yes! Thus, based on seeing this badge and reading about it, a user is incentivized to:

  1. visit Area 51 (and we provide a handy link in the badge description itself) -- win
  2. look at upcoming site proposals -- win
  3. follow likely proposals, which requires reading them and deciding if they have a chance -- win.

In conclusion: win.

The only minor downside is that Precognitive could incentivize following a lot of proposals you don't actually care about in hopes of getting the badge by chance. But this is really no different than the "fill out my profile with a bunch of garbage" approach to getting the Autobiographer badge. So the risk is very small, it's just a bronze badge, and the upside is IMO large.

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    So it's a variation of a Beta badge. You know what? This is actually really clever. +1
    – Jon Seigel
    Commented Dec 9, 2010 at 2:20
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    I think you should award it to Joel and yourself. At least you two followed and believed in the sites before they existed!
    – Jan Fabry
    Commented Feb 17, 2011 at 8:41
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    Oh no! I'm never gonna collect them all! My Pokemons....
    – VMAtm
    Commented Jul 6, 2011 at 6:23
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    What is Area 51?
    – SilverHorn
    Commented Aug 17, 2011 at 15:53
  • @SilverHorn if you're seriously asking this
    – om-nom-nom
    Commented Mar 24, 2012 at 14:29
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    But this badge is not yet awarded to any user?? :-)See this link Precognitive Badge Commented Jun 20, 2012 at 13:21
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    @SJS: It's not awarded to anyone because Area 51 came about after S[OFU]. So none of the trilogy sites were in Area 51, and thus none ever really had a "commitment" phase or a concept of "following the proposal". All sites effectively use the same engine, though, and there's not really a compelling reason to add code to except the main sites from showing the tag...it's just that no one has received it or ever will.
    – cHao
    Commented Oct 21, 2012 at 20:15

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