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Old 02-04-2008, 06:34 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Going through the TF members list you find a lot users that posted once never to return even to review/reply to their technical quandaries. Some sign up, make a few posts and are never heard from again. I was thinking, is there a way to delete users who have been inactive for more than a year? I understand we do have some people who CAN'T be on for reasons such as going into service etc.

I was thinking if it was possible to add in a feature that first puts inactive users in a dormant state with an alert email then after a set amount of time they receive a warning of their account being deleted and then after that times up they are deleted, but people with legitimate reasons for being absent could qualify for an exempt status and they would not suffer deletion upon being absent for a long time.

First step would user is absent for X amount of days, account now dormant and requires the person to come onto TF and revalidate that account.

Second step would be a lockdown with a warning of impending deletion after X amount of days.

Third step would be an email alert of deletion in 72 hours or less followed by immediate deletion after that time is up.

Status Exempt would be given only by admin and super mods to those who can not login to TF for valid reasons, i.e. going into the service, blocked by college firewall, etc.

I was thinking if this could be done it'd cut down on a lot of members who no longer come to TF as well as get some back who forgot about it and will free up some of the clutter going on in the members list.
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Old 02-04-2008, 06:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Great idea. I have thought about something similar. One forum I go to has a six month wait... after that the account is deleted automatically. It would definitely cut down on the clutter and free up a boatload of user names.

Along the same lines, I wonder if there is a way to automatically lock a thread after so long, say six months? That would eliminate a lot of necroposting, and after six months the tech would have moved along enough to justify a new thread.
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Old 02-04-2008, 07:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Exactly, I was thinking 6 months would be perfect would a lock and maybe another 3-6 months would be the deletion. The automated thread lock is good too, cuts down on work for mods/super mods/admin and eliminates necro posts and if the OP wants it re-opened for a legitimate reason a super mod could unlock it for them.
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Old 02-04-2008, 08:27 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Excellent idea.
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Old 02-04-2008, 08:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

There was never an idea that was bad, it is just a matter of DMO getting around to do it..
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Old 02-04-2008, 08:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

And if the software can actually do it. I need to dig and learn what all this puppy can do. vB may not do the Kessel Run anywhere near what the Falcon can, but it supposed to the Cadillac of BB software.
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trotter View Post
vB may not do the Kessel Run anywhere near what the Falcon can, but it supposed to the Cadillac of BB software.
I prefer to look at it like it's a 69 Dodge Charger, give it a little work and some orange paint and it'll jump over anything you can throw at it.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:04 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

You might want to consider the inactive users as it users last seen here. Not when they last posted. Because with any forum community, you will get your far share of lurkers (accounts that watch, but rarely post).

The other thing to consider is what to do we do with Banned Users Name as they are another type of inactive user.
Like the last thing we need is the miss conception of a new user taking using a same user name of some one be previously banned.
Eg. Lets say we get some one else signing on with the name Powerslave or Roo.
Like this will cause a lot of confusion with other users there.
Not to mension the banned users just waiting it out and claiming back their old user name.

And finally, now that we have these inactive users getting deleted. What happens to their posts. And what happens to them when some one else decided to create an account with that same user name.

This would be easy for the number of no post wonders that sign up here. But once one these users makes a even one post, then that is where a problems can start.

Sorry to bring these points up, but I work this account and point of sales software and just deleting some thing out of a datebase can not be as simple as it sounds. As it normally leaves a hole.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Good points, Harper. Banned names should definitely remain that way. Zero posts with no online activity wouldn't be a loss.

Any account with posts could be deleted, but the posts should remain. The forum I mentioned puts the name as a non-link and the title "Deleted" for it.

The whole discussion could be moot if the software doesn't cooperate.
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Old 02-05-2008, 09:39 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weeding Out Inactive Users?

Banned names should stay banned yes, lurkers wouldn't be banned if they checked their email and received the warning and they responded to it. The main reason of this would be to weed out those who sign up and never log back on again as well as those who had a problem and registered and were never heard from again.

As Trotter said, an account with 0 post and no activity isn't much of a loss in anyones eyes. Posts should remain in tact yes but most people who have posts are either partially active or fully active, all others are users who no longer come to TF or have had that mighty ban hammer swing down upon them. When I said free up some names I didn't just mean for new people to use, it also makes going through the members list a lot less painful but banned names should never be restored unless an admin sees it fit.

My original idea isn't to delete from last post date but from last time they logged in, accounts have a feature that tells when they last signed on so even lurkers wouldn't have a problem.
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