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An idea for a slight improvement


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Now, this may or may not require a crap-load of code tweaks to implement. My hope is that it would be minimal because I don't want you developers (IPS developers) to hate me for this idea.

Basically, when deleting a user, instead of zeroing out the member ID for content they have submitted (such as posts), flip their member ID into a negative number. So if a member had ID number 12345, the member ID number on their posts and such would become -12345. Obviously, if the member ID of a post isn't a value greater than 0, then it's not by a member, so no need to treat it like it has a valid member account attached.

One major benefit here is that if a member account happened to be deleted by accident, it would be possible for the admin to reassign the ownership of that content to a new account, like when the member makes a new account.

In addition to this, have a new table or perhaps use an existing table, where deleted members would be stored at, keeping minimal information (ID of course, name that can be edited by ACP, join date, when deleted, a few other minor tidbits). Then in the ACP, deleted members could be viewed and their content found. So if someone was deleted, for whatever reason, their history is still intact. Obviously most information would be lost, such as preferences, signature, etc, and email should be up to the admin to either keep or delete. The reason for that being that someone may want the insure their privacy and have requested that their account be deleted and no record kept of their email address. On the flip side, for instances where an email address is retained, if they sign up again, then when the account has been verified/fully validated, then their content could be 'returned' to them by re-assigning the content with the new member ID (should be ACP setting, and for admin validation situations, prompt them for what to do).

Outside of that, everything would still be as-is already, where a post (without a value greater than 0) would be treated as a guest post.

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So....you want deletion to not actually delete.

It would delete the member and all their contact info and other profile information, it would just keep accountability for posts in case a member changes their mind later on down the road and decides to come back, allowing the administrator to seem godlier than they already are by giving that member their posts back. However, the member would still be responsible for rebuilding their profile.

I like it.

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