How to "sign in with code"?


#1

How does the “use a sign in code” option work? We are running workshops for parents + their children, and not everyone is comfortable using their email to sign up. Is there a way to use this sign in option with a large group?


#2

Hi @kasslent, welcome to the Glitch Forums!

Emails on Glitch accounts are expected to be unique (meaning that a given email address is only associated with a single Glitch account, although a Glitch account may, under some circumstances, be associated with multiple email addresses), so if you sign in in multiple places with the same email address you’ll be signing into the same Glitch account. If that works for your use case then that’s no problem for us, but if your participants are going to create a lot of projects that can get busy in the Glitch account’s project list pretty quickly. As you might have seen, the signin codes are pretty simple to communicate - it’s not some string of 32 random characters but instead a short list of English words that are easy to, for example, write on a post-it or whiteboard.

Each code is only valid once and only for a pretty short period of time, so there’s little security risk in sharing those, but we do have some limits on how many times we’ll email a given email address in a given time period to make sure uncouth internet users can’t use our service to spam people. So if you have a lot of people using the same email address you might bump up against this limit, and if you have a limited time allotted for your workshop or class that might be problematic.

One fairly common way folks work around this is using + - sign “tagging” for email addresses. This is where adding “+” and some other identifier after the email address “name” and before the “@” sign sends the email to the same email mailbox but looks like a different email to external services (like Glitch). So if you sent an email to "support+cori@glitch.com" it would end up in the same spot as an email sent to "support@gmail.com". Google’s mail products (both consumer-facing GMail and the organizational GSuite email that many educational and business organizations use) support this, as do a lot of other mail hosts, but it’s should be tested before assuming it will work.

What doing that would enable you to do would be to use a single mailbox to receive all of the signin codes, but tag them uniquely for each user/team so they get their own Glitch account. Someone with access to the central mailbox would need to be responsible for distributing the codes, but each separately tagged email signin would have its own project list. This does make it harder for someone to sign into that account and access those projects later - they’d need to be in close contact with the owner of the central mailbox to do so in the future, but for people who wanted ongoing access they could create their own account later and take over the project from there.

One last thing that you might be interested in: Glitch has a robust privacy policy and we have no plans on sharing any personal information and would talk with the community before changing that policy. I’m not sure how far that might go to reassure any of your participants.

Whew. I know this is a lot to digest, but I’m happy tyo answer any further questions you might have or to help troubleshoot anything you might run into. We’ve had good luck setting up the + - tagging with schools in the past, and I’m happy to work with you there.


#3

Thanks so much for this information @cori ! Our workshops are 3 hours long - do you know if the codes would work for that length of time? I’d be interested in testing out this method. How are the sign in codes generated?

Ideally, we wouldn’t have to require anyone to use their email to create an account in our workshop, but would add signing up with email as a “next step” if they would like to continue coding from home.

Thanks for sharing the privacy policy! I love the way you have formatted + summarized sections. It’s probably the most intuitive policy I’ve seen, yet! I’ll be sure to add a link for parents to read for more info.

I also have another question relating to emails + privacy. We felt uncomfortable asking learners to email their “Invite Others to Edit” link to each other. Do you have any other suggestions for sharing these longer urls?

Thanks!


#4

Hey @kasslent

Once the sign in code is generated by the Glitch server it’s valid for about 10 minutes, so it certainly won’t last for the length of your workshop.

One thing I neglected to mention - once your participants are working and creating projects, as long as they stay in the same browser session Glitch will keep track of everything they’re doing and they can log in using a sign in code at the very end of the workshop and the new Glitch account will be created with all of the projects they were working on throughout the workshop.

If they were to sign in from home later on they’d get a new account without the projects they were working on. However, if the projects people work on in your workshop are public (which is the default) then once they make an account from home they can open the project they were working on and remix it and keep working from where they left off in their own project. So that might be a workable solution for your workshop.

The join links are indeed pretty arcane and not easy to share. They’re really only suitable for something where you can either click on a link or copy and paste, so something like an email, SMS, or chat message are really the most useable mechanisms. That said, another option would be for users to access the project and ask to Join from the Glitch editor - if you open the editor to a project as a non-member you’ll see a button to request to join the project, like this:

anonymous-join

Sharing the project name and having folks ask to join so they can co-edit the project is probably easier than trying to share the join link.

Hope this helps, and let us know if we can offer additional info!


#5

Thank you so much @cori ! This information is really helpful.