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How are the different site header colors picked? Can the community request a color change?

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I'm wondering how the site header colors are picked for the different sites. For example, Photography & Video and Mathematics are both purple; Judaism and Music are both yellow or light brown; and Scientific Speculation is red.

Is there a common theme here, or are the colors chosen largely arbitrarily? What opportunities exist for the community to request that the header color is changed?

I ask this only out of curiosity, not as criticism of any particular site's header colors.

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There's a list of about a dozen colors that are available. The choices are largely arbitrary. We want the logo and color to not clash (those can be determined in either order), and since we don't yet have banner art to distinguish communities from each other visually, just logos, we want some variety across the network.

When there's a particular color association that makes sense, we'll use it. We made Outdoors green because a lot of stuff outdoors is, and we were told that purple is a significant color in Christianity so we used that.

A community can request that its color be changed; the community's meta would be the best place to work that out. Implementation is easy on our end; it's one configuration setting.

You might have noticed that categories can use a different color from the community's main color, too. All the metas use the blue-gray theme. If a community wants to change a particular category's color we can do that. We just ask the community to think about the trade-off between confusion ("wait, I thought I was on Unicorns.CD but now this page is gray instead of pink?") and utility (signaling that a category has a fundamentally different purpose, like meta does). As an example of where this might be helpful, a community that has a sandbox might want to vary that color to signal "hey, not the main area, but still part of us".[1]


  1. I only just thought of that example. Code Golf we're not holding out on you -- just didn't think to mention it. ↩︎

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