looks like this is the primary issue on this subject on GitHub
I’m not replying to Noelle, just using that link as reference…
I’ve not seen one person say that account deletion should not be provided, regardless of how it can be done. In fact, everyone who has commented at all on the topic in GitHub, here, or Mastodon has been in favor of such a feature, and rightfully so.
One thing rises to the surface of all this: This ability means a lot to people, and if Mastodon never provides the ability, it could be Masto’s death knell. I already see a lot of “whoa, fuck that” kind of comments regarding the lack of this ability on an instance. It will only get worse as the natives keep murmuring louder and louder.
And, honestly, if Masto really wants to be seen as a great alternative to Twitter or whatever based on data control and privacy, then it needs to provide this ability or it will have been sold on false premise and promise. Indeed, one of Gargron’s early Medium posts about Masto compared to Twitter (in relation to privacy and data control) was why I first tried Mastodon, though I failed to consider checking first if you could, in fact, delete your account. It was after the fact I learned you could not.
Regarding the Github issue link above. I see a couple of questions asked deep in the thread. Namely, the notion that both GNU Social and Diaspora both provide for deleting an account. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but if it is, then that right there makes me want to ask, what’s the problem with Masto? If those systems can do it, how? Do the same thing. Why not?
So clearly a clean wipe of an account on a given instance is now possible, but you must ask to have it done.
I favor a complete delete of an account (and all data) over a mere suspension. If Masto really wants to be on the light side of the Force, it will provide this ability. It seems to me suspensions can be abused by users. They realize it’s a way to secure a nick on a given instance and start doing that to preserve their personal brand, or whatever.
The scenario I represent as a “user” of this software product — what I’ve come to expect any social software to provide me after I’ve created an account, and what I should accept in relation to how it functions — if/when I decide to delete my account:
- I decide if I want to keep my history of posts.
- If yes, I download that data first. (Functionality that’s also missing right now.)
- If no, I continue on…
- Decide if I want to keep my follow/block/mute data (etc).
- If yes, export that data.
- If no, I continue on…
- Click the big, red “Adios, amigos!” button.
- Click the “Si, Si … Vámonos!” confirmation button.
What I would accept in all this is that I lose all my toots and other data if I do not download it first, never to be recovered again. Also, that my name, email, etc is removed from the instance server like it was never created to begin with. And that anyone else can come along and create a new account using my @-name. I accept that. I’m not the only Dave Smith, Sue Ellen, Pat Jones, or Wolfie in the world, after all. I don’t have universal rights to an identity in the fediverse. And maybe that’s a good thing!
Can I help it that someone on instance B is following my soon-to-be-killed account on instance A? No. But I can given them plenty of heads-up notice that I’m leaving the node, and where to find me, and that should be enough. I’ve done what I can. After that, “tough titty, said the kitty.” Life goes on without me.
So, long story short, are we really overthinking this? Or is it just a headache to code?