Today while I was reading a linked question on this answer, I found that Paul White, a moderator who joined more than 8 years ago and currently has around 55k reputation points and 900 posts, is showing up as a new contributor on this question.

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He's not showing up as a new contributor on his self-answer to that question.

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I thought maybe his first question was asked recently, but no, it was asked back in 2014.

According to What are the exact criteria for the "new contributor" indicator to be shown?, the new contributor indicator is only shown when the author first posted less than a week ago (which is definitely not true in this case).

Why has Paul White suddenly become new again? And why only on the question and not its self-answer?


1 Answer 1


Paul originally asked that question from a brand new, anonymous account (to encourage answers and gauge the reaction to the question on its own merits): https://dba.stackexchange.com/users/182461/user182461

After the post was answered, ownership of that post was transferred to his account in order to be able to accept his self-answer without breaking the site rules*.

The "New Contributor" indicator is (apparently) attached to the post, rather than to the user. Which is why it has stuck around. It will expire naturally after 7 days.

*It's perfectly acceptable to have multiple accounts, as long as you don't do anything that wouldn't be possible from a single account - for example, voting for your own posts to gain rep. In Paul's case, he would have gained +2 illicit reputation points for accepting his own answer from another account, and +15 for the accept (self-acceptance usually awards no rep).

  • @PaulWhite So SE actually changed the owner of that post, instead of simply merging that account into yours? The user shows up as not found, so that seems to suggest accounts were merged.
    – gparyani
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 14:15
  • @gparyani Merging moderator accounts is a painful process, especially since many of them have access to Teams now. Ironically, that makes reassigning the post and deleting the profile a much simpler task than merging for them.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 15:54
  • @animuson To prevent this confusion from happening, it would have been nice if they also removed the OwnerIsNewPoster mark in addition to reattributing it.
    – gparyani
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 16:07
  • @gparyani I deleted the profile manually after animuson changed the post ownership.
    – Paul White Mod
    Commented Jun 12, 2019 at 23:17

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