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Joined: 30 Mar 2008
Gender: Male
Posts: 40,061

19 Jul 2012, 12:12 pm

Can I close my account?

Yes. Contact a moderator via PM and ask for your account to be closed and you will no longer be able to login to the site. Please be aware however that none of your posts will be removed.

Can I delete my account?

In a word, no. The site policy as dictated by Alex (the site owner) is that accounts cannot be deleted. Moderators do not have any tools to delete entire accounts anyway. Only Alex has tools to delete an entire account (i.e. all your posts), however, he has never done so as far as I'm aware.

I understand the primary reasons why entire accounts cannot be deleted is that it messes up the database, and that conversations in threads no longer make sense, or become misleading if one part of the conversation is missing. Even if an entire account was deleted (by Alex) it would not remove any of the members posts that have been quoted in part or in whole by other members.

Members have the facility to delete (or edit out) their own posts for up to 30 minutes after posting them. After that posts are locked.

A moderator can only do the following actions:

1. Close your account so you can no longer login, but that does not remove any of your posts. Your account can be closed at your own request. To have your account closed make a post asking in the moderator attention thread or send a PM to an active moderator.

2. In extreme cases, and at the moderators discretion, one or two posts may be edited to remove personal or sensitive information from members posts. For example if a member has disclosed their real name. However, since we can only do this one post at a time, don't expect us to edit more than a couple of your posts.

3. If, sometime in the future you would like to re-open the account please contact a moderator by email. Do not create a new account just to ask for your old one to be reinstated.

Disclosure of personal information on Internet forums.

Members are advised that nothing posted on the internet ever disappears anyway. There are a number of sites (unrelated to Wrong Planet) that archive web pages and either keep them briefly in caches (e.g. Google) or other sites that hold the information permanently. Think about this before you post personal information on the internet! It may be linked back to you in the future.

The important thing when posting on any internet forum is not to use your real name anywhere or disclose anything that can be linked directly back to your real life. It is easy to find posts of members here by doing a Google search. There is no such thing as privacy on the internet. When you post something it is there for ever, lurking around on the sites posted to, or in various search engine databases or archive site databases. The only none-searchable area on WP is the Members forum.

If you use your real name it is trivially easy to find you posts on this site doing a Google search. Do you want your school friends, parents, work colleagues or employer reading your posts here?

Nowadays it is quite common for potential employers to type the name of prospective new employees into Google and to see what comes up... links to Facebook pages or other online forums etc. Do you really want a potential employer to discover that you have disclosed a drink / drug problem or mental health issues or some other "impediment" that would make them reject your job application?

Think before you post. Once you have disclosed personal information on this or on any other internet forum it is too late go back.

I've left WP indefinitely.