Where did this "Stop Sign Sticker" thing come from?

There is this whole thing about not worrying about stop signs unless they have a sticker on the back. Sounds untrue to me, but where did it come from?

See what I’m talking about here

I checked Snopes, by the way. Found nothing.

First I’ve heard about the sticker making them legitimate or not. To my knowledge stop signs on private property are not enforced. Signs in parking lots, private drives, garages etc. You’ll still be found at fault if you get in an accident for not obeying those signs however, you just won’t get a ticket.

Hmm…that doesn’t seem right.
I vote “Hogwash”!

It may be true (in some places) that the sticker indicates a government-provided sign.

It may be true (in some places) that traffic signs on roadways within a development are not enforceable by the police. This does not necessarily correlate with whether or not the sign has a sticker.

By and large, though, it seems traffic signs in areas accessible to and used by the public can be and are enforced by the police. Still, there are variations depending on the particular jurisdiction. The linked page doesn’t even bother to indicate where those signs are, which makes it easy to assume it’s a nationwide rule. It isn’t.

Relevant discussions here and here.

Your link didn’t work for me, but my guess is this is akin to my Dad’s old joke whenever he rolled a stop sign: “The white border means it’s optional!”

I assumed this thread was going to be about this:


I agree with Gary here, and I’ll add this: in my area, stop signs and other traffic devices are installed by the developer prior to the city/county accepting the street or road as “public”, just as they install the water & sewer lines before transferring them over to the city/county. Frankly I’ve never seen a sticker like that on a stop sign, or any other traffic control sign, and I was in the Public Works department of our City for four years.

In other words, I call shenanigans.

That doesn’t answer your question of “where did this come from” though.

my reply should have been ‘I’ve never heard of’

According to Wiki, the sticker is there to prevent theft.
This sticker says "WARNING up to $1000 fine and imprisonment for possessing or tampering with this sign.

A 4-way stop near my house has signs with stickers, and signs without. I gauge it as nothing more than a conspiracy nutter’s latest fantasy.

The whole idea fits the pattern of “If you know the secret you don’t have to obey the law like everybody else does.”

I think it’s pretty safe to say that any time you see an idea pattern like this, you can assume it’s somewhere between an urban legend and a conspiracy theory. What it won’t be is true.

I don’t drive, so maybe I’m missing something here; how is a driver supposed to know whether or not there is a small sticker on the back of a stop sign without stopping and looking?

Would it even be legal for a developer to put a government sign? It seems like it would akin to imitatiting a police officer.

ETA: it seems you can buy them…

Hey, I’m the original poster here.

Uh, my question wasn’t about the validity of the claim. I think it’s a bunch of crap.

My question was where this idea came from. I guess I thought it’s be in Snopes by now.

And for reasons I can’t quite explain, I thought it was going to be about this.

To the OP: possibly, this is an off-shoot of the notion that some “no parking” signs have no actual legal enforceability. I believe what I was told was that only the ones which state an actual fine are police-enforceable. Here’s a cite for that, for what it’s worth (it’s a little ways down the page).

See post number 7. Not only is it legal but required, if the streets of the development are intended to become public streets.

Hey fellas…Just joined here.

First off I have been trying to figure out why stop signs had the sticker on the back in red/green/or yellow since I heard a tale from one of my classmates in highschool…They said it has something to do with in the event of national emergency and marshall law had to be declared, these stickers were to be peeled away by police and the army and would reveal a secret code…I’m 28 now and FINALLY I know the real reason why and that what I had heard for years was bullshit XD.