Just in Chronicles

Life as a Voyage

Confirm Password vs Confirm Email

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During the signup process at a certain website, candidates are usually required to fill username, password and email at least. Traditionally, in order to avoid typing wrong password, a “Password Confirm” field has been used so far. It doesn’t let users only confirm their password, also let them make sure how they put their correct password and remember it easily.

Nowadays, a lot of websites do not request users to confirm their password while signing up. The reason is that additional field to fill in hurts user experiences. According to Munroe, It takes more time for users to complete the action and, as a result, the website will lose the users retention. That sounds very reasonable. “Forgot Password” function is to support users who forgot their password when they don’t remember the one.

Well, then there is another issue arising. How can we assure if users put their correct email address? If they put misspelled email address, the password reset email or authentication email will not be sent to the user. Website developer cannot guarantee if the users type the correct ones or not.

Of course, keeping the “Password Confirm” field won’t help users enter correct password. Instead, Appleseed argues in his article that we need to provide “Email Confirm” field to make users sure to put correct email address. Appleseed ends his post with:

A misspelled password is annoying. A misspelled e-mail address is hazardous.

If I am asked to put additional field, I’ll rather choose the extra “Email Confirm” field as the quotation above. If I can, I will not put any extra field but email and password (optionally username or nickname).

How do you guys think of this?

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Written by Justin Yoo

14/03/2012 at 10:29

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