I always get disappointed when I get a bunch of notifications, I think it is like, lots of comments and answers to my questions, and then it is just that silly stuff.

Even better, if it is possible globally for all stack forums.

Click to enlarge

  • You mean the new 'notifications' section in the message window which notify you about badges? Commented May 28, 2012 at 17:18
  • In the top-left corner, the same place that tells you (with a little digit) about answers and comments (the stuff you do want to know about). Commented May 28, 2012 at 17:19
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    Yes, that what I meant. Note that the new ones have a different color, at least if you only get such. However, what notification are you getting? These are usually only for badges and edit notifications, and you hardly have badges yet. Commented May 28, 2012 at 17:31
  • Just now when I logged in there was a four (4) and they were all "congratulation" stuff. I think they are annoying as they make you disappointed, that's all. Commented May 28, 2012 at 17:34
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    You mean "You've earned the X badge" like messages? Note that the messenger is stackexchange wide, so you will see messages from all sites your are having an account, not just from the one side your are logging into. You might want to post this complaint at the main meta site meta.stackexchange.com instead. Commented May 28, 2012 at 17:42
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    @EmanuelBerg: Next time you're in the situation you're describing, take a screen shot and add it here, to get rid of any unclearness.
    – doncherry
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 18:25
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    This problem might rectify itself for you over time: Once you've been active on the site a bit, you'll have earned all the "beginners" badges, so the badge notifications (the "congratulations") will become less frequent and at some point will be limited to the ones that are actually nice to see.
    – Jake
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 19:45
  • Jake, good point. @doncherry: There you go, added a dump. Take a look yourself. Not bad for a new user :) Commented May 28, 2012 at 20:56

2 Answers 2


It seems to me that this has something to do with the inverted (?) color scheme you're using. Generally, the revamped system works like this:

There are two types of messages, inbox and notifications.

We’re fiercely protective of the inbox, making sure only actionable things directed at you go into it. Comments, answers, a handful of post notices, Stack Overflow Careers messages, and the like. That’s why that little red number is so loved, clicking it shows you awesome, interesting things as a rule.

However, since day one we’ve had a another class of general information notifications, badge awards, revisions, election announcements, and so on. Stuff that’s good to know, but not always stuff you can respond to.

This other kind is new to the top left corner, and that seems to be bugging you. However, they're displayed with numbers in differently colored circles.

This is inbox:


This is notifications:


If there are inbox news and notifications waiting for you, the circle is going to be red:

Since notifications aren’t as important as inbox notices, whenever you have unread inbox messages we’ll display the red inbox indicator rather than the gray notification indicator. Of course, once you open the drop down you’ll see that you also have new notifications.

What I don't know, however, is whether the number would be inbox + notifications or just inbox.

So again, I'm afraid your color scheme seems to break the color differentiation.

All quotes and images are taken from the Stack Exchange blog post Revamped Notifications by Kevin Montrose.


Now that I got another inbox, I think I found the relevant CSS code:

padding:2px 4px;
margin:1px 0 0 -117px !important;

#E23535 seems to be the red in question. So my answer is: It's not about the sprite, but about your color scheme not allowing a background color in that place.

  • The problem might actually be that you're not allowing any images, which is why you're also missing out on the precise information how many of which badges you have. I'm not sure if the red/gray circle is part of a sprite sheet or a CSS/HTML background color. I'll try to find out next time I get a notification.
    – doncherry
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 21:49
  • I am allowing images, I see my image above and the images in your post. But yeah, some are not visible to me, it seems. Maybe this has to do with the color scheme as well? Anyhow, I'm glad you are so serious about your site. Commented May 28, 2012 at 22:29
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    @EmanuelBerg: Yeah, it's not the sprites, it's the CSS color scheme, see my edit. And indeed I do like tex.sx a bit :). You'll find it very worth your time. Different from normal forums, but a format that suits the topic extremely well.
    – doncherry
    Commented May 28, 2012 at 22:43

Believe me, the Great Big Orange Banner was infinitely[1] more annoying.

[1] As a mathematician, I'm officially sanctioned one hyperbole[2] per day. This was not it.

[2] And I'm prohibited Bad Puns. Tough.

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