# Having to log in to see the Hot | Week | Month

I don't like that the Hot | Week | Month feature no longer appears unless I log in.

I don't like the big welcome box taking up most of the screen unless I log in.

I object to having to log in to browse the website as it used to be.

If I'm not answering or asking a question but just reading then why should I have to log in?

• I posted this as a feature request on meta.SO, with a different wording. – 75064 May 18 '13 at 20:02
• I see now that the main page lists the questions of the month instead of the active. It's only the hot and week that aren't there. If I'd noticed that before and thought about whether the month only was sufficient then I probably wouldn't have posted this question. – Snor May 19 '13 at 20:45
• It was a good idea to bring it up anyway; other users may be browsing this or other SE sites on weekly basis (e.g., Cooking on a weekend). My meta.SO post got up to +8 so far. – 75064 May 19 '13 at 21:01
• There's a workaround: click the link mobile in the footer of the site. The mobile version has not been redesigned (yet?), so it allows the same options active|featured|hot|week|month as the desktop version used to have. – ˈjuː.zɚ79365 May 26 '13 at 0:40

I sympathize (and do not understand the downvotes at all): there are valid reasons why a user of the site may want to browse it without logging in from a particular (e.g., possibly infected) computer. Not being able to access the familiar features of the site in this manner can be frustrating.

The most obvious workaround would be to append ?tab=hot, ?tab=week, or ?tab=month to the URL, or have these bookmarked somehow. However, I just tried it from Incognito window and for anonymous users all three show the Month tab. This looks like a bug. I could not find any way to access Hot or Week lists without logging in.

The recent change of the interface for non-logged-in users appears to be done in haste; e.g., it is responsible for the recent (temporary) disappearance of meta/chat/faq links. Someone already pointed out that non-logged-in users now don't see blog posts.

All that said, this decision wasn't made at meta.MSE and it's not going to be reversed at meta.MSE. (Since your post is about a network-wide interface change, http://meta.stackoverflow.com would be the right place for it.) But I hope that at least the bug with malfunctioning ?tab=hot and ?tab=week URLs can be brought to the SE developers' attention.

Added. I noticed that on StackOverflow the hot/week/month tabs are still shown to non-logged-in users. Some SE sites are more equal than others. This goes against the idea of having consistent interface across SE sites.

I agree; I don't see any reason why people who are not logged-in users shouldn't be able to look at the Hot, Week, and Month tabs. Oh well. Maybe the SE team did it to simplify the appearance for users unfamiliar with the site; that's a reason I could understand, even though I don't think it was necessary.

You can get rid of the welcome box without logging in by clicking the "minimize" button, and then clicking the "close" button.

Given that I agree non-logged in users should be able to see the Hot, Week, Month tabs, I don't see why being logged in is such an issue. You don't have to be logged into your main account, you could make a new one. Tie it to a throwaway email address if you want. Being logged in is stored in a cookie; you only have to do it once per computer.

• Re: It doesn't even have to be registered! Is not this an option that comes up only when posting? If a user does not intend to post, can they create an unregistered account? – 75064 May 18 '13 at 17:50
• Furthermore, extremely minor is subjective; for a person with casual interest in math, who primarily accesses Math.SE to read posts, those lists may be not so minor. And it's exactly this group of people who have little reason to log in, or to have an account on Math.SE at all. The OP could be speaking for a large (but silent) group here. – 75064 May 18 '13 at 18:09
• I feel the question has an accusatory tone towards SE, that there is some nefarious privacy-violating purpose to requiring people to log in. The phrase "Some SE sites are more equal than others" would seem to support this interpretation (or do I misunderstand your meaning, 75064?). That is the tone I objected to. Maybe I'm just adding this tone in my head, but that's how I see it. – Zev Chonoles May 18 '13 at 19:17
• The OP did not accuse SE of any wrongdoing. Their remarks are critical, not accusatory. Such criticism is constructive ™. – 75064 May 18 '13 at 19:24
• I share the feeling of Zev that the post has a feeling of being somewhat accusatory. I am also in the opinion that the Orwellian reference does not help to mitigate that feeling. – Asaf Karagila May 18 '13 at 20:18
• "you only have to do it once per computer." Incorrect. – Snor May 19 '13 at 11:33