Make email optional

I know everyone will hate me for this, but I need a way to make email optional, or at least make the email verification optional.

The main problem is, i’m making a forum for a game, and mostly kids aged 8-12 play it. A lot of them don’t have a personal email, and they end up using their school one, which doesn’t allow emails from 3rd party domains.

For my game, I have a login system with just a username, a password, and an optional email for password recovery. This system worked much better for us, instead of forcing email verification.

Is there a way to do this with discourse? I’m selfhosting and I’m willing to learn how to make a plugin for this (some JS, PY and PHP experience)


Did you take a look at these results?


Yes, I have, but none of them really helps me.

1 Like

Maybe you could recommend that they speak to their parents (or guardians or whatever) about registering with their email addresses.


I will add that message, but not really a viable solution because the average player wouldn’t bother asking their parents

1 Like

It would probably be a good thing if those children don’t get to join internet forums until they’re older :slight_smile:


:confused: I guess, but is there a way to at least auto verify users?

You can use Social logins (facebook, gmail, and others) and those don’t require email validation. Also, systems that use DiscourseConnect (SSO) don’t require validation, so you could set up WordPress and contrive to have it let anyone in the world create an account with no means to validate who they are and then use the wp-discourse plugin to authenticate against wordpress.


You could teach them about spam and anonymity from an early age and get them to use a disposable email address service like

There might be some ideas here: email address for children - Brave Search

There are probably so many potential pitfalls in starting a forum for children that email authentication will be the least of your worries…


In the end, I’ve come to the conclusion of just keeping everything as-is. I understand why using plugins/sso would be a security risk and for the children who doesn’t have email, well they can still browse the forum I guess. If they do end up wanting to join the forum, they could just ask their parents to help.

Even with verification, the forum did do much better than expected, around 30 users in the first day. I’m guessing that the verification isn’t as big of a problem then.

Thanks for all your help!


I’m guessing that they all have email accounts that they aren’t supposed to have. :wink:


This topic was automatically closed 30 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.