Labeled as question in NamePros Community Help, started by Magul, May 9, 2021
What do you think of inability to delete a conversation from your private message inbox?
@Bravo Mod Team,
There are two option to remove a direct message from your inbox:
Hide: It will return to your inbox if it receives a reply.
Mute: It will not return your inbox even if it receives a reply.
Similar to emails, you cannot delete a conversation from someone else’s inbox, so we make that clear by not offering a false appearance that a conversation can be deleted.
Better than email, you have 5 minutes to change your message after sending it, which could be used to delete the contents of the message.
We could hide it even more from your account, but does that help somehow that we’re overlooking?
Why do you want to delete it?
Similar to emails? You can delete emails from your inbox and delete the trash permanently.
It's a helpful option to keep the inbox organised and neat.
I can delete my email.
I used to leave conversations on NamePros
I do NOT want to accumulate years old conversations.
Please bring Leave Conversation functionality back.
How can I "hide" a conversation? I do not see such an option.
You can't truly delete it; you can hide it, but the data is still there forever. We don't want to give people the impression that they have the ability to delete a conversation for the other participants.
The "Leave Conversation" functionality never behaved properly, introduced various bugs in some situations, and often didn't function the way people expected.
If you choose to "Archive" a conversation, it will be hidden. Again, you can't truly delete it because there are other participants who may not want it to be deleted; furthermore, conversations on NamePros often contain binding contracts. Rather than giving you the false impression that the data has been scrubbed from the internet or that you can back out of a contract by deleting it, we give you an archive of your past conversations. They stay out of your way until you need them.
What if someone hacks into my account? They have all my commercial information in their fingertip.
Contracts should be kept by those who need them. I can burn any contract from my side or shred it.
Bring Leave Conversation back, I do not need years long conversations in my mailbox.
I can delete emails from my mailbox. I click delete and they are no longer in my mailbox.
It's there anyway, and we can't truly delete it. Any website that claims to be able to do so is neglecting all the intermediaries at play (usually out of ignorance).
They aren't permanently deleted even if you leave them. The same is true of email. Do you really want us to give you the illusion that the data is possible to delete?
If you want to be able to do that, then use snail mail instead of email or any other internet-based medium--although, when I receive mail from USPS, they email me a scanned copy of the envelope, and I can often see the text inside the envelope due to the way in which they scan it, so perhaps even that isn't safe.
No, you can't. It looks to you like it's gone, but that data is still out there--forever. Every MTA between the two authoritative SMTP servers has seen a plaintext copy of it--and, in many cases, every ISP, since SMTP is often unencrypted. And each email provider has countless backups, regardless of what they say. If they think your email looks remotely spam-like, it's going to end up submitted to countless spam services without your knowledge.
Back in the days when schools were just starting to use email internally, I was an intern at a public school in the US. I remember when they received a notice from the state that they were now obligated to retain copies of all emails for about a decade. The teachers weren't aware of this, nor were the parents. They could "delete" emails from their mailboxes, but the emails remained on the server.
Even if the data was deleted from the live database, there were countless tape and hard drive backups. Each day, when the Director of Technology left the office, he would take a tape or hard drive home with him that contained a backup of the most important data in case the building were to be destroyed overnight.
Storage space is much cheaper today than it was back then, but the size of a single email hasn't changed much, making it feasible to store backups for a much longer duration. The storage medium might have changed (tape backups aren't as common these days), but your emails are still out there, and they'll likely outlive all of us.
Is this ideal? Probably not, but NamePros is a small company, and these are problems that even the largest privacy-centric companies haven't solved. It's nice that we're finally seeing public interest in improving the security and privacy of the internet, but there are going to need to be significant technological advances before it's truly possible to scrub this sort of data.
In the meantime, you're professionals, so we're not going to baby you like your email provider might. We make it clear: it's technologically infeasible to truly delete content posted to the internet. It's up to you to make an appropriate risk assessment. If you really want to shove the problem under the carpet, we've left the "Leave Conversation" endpoint available to those who can read the code to understand how it works and where to find it. We don't support it, and it may disappear or break. If you understand how it works and its caveats, you'll know where to find it and how to use it, since it's provided by publicly-available software (XenForo). You'll also know that it does not actually delete the conversations, and it never has; that's why it was called "Leave," not "Delete". We didn't like that some people thought it actually deleted the data, so we replaced it with a UI that's clearer about the functionality. The functionality maps roughly as follows:
Leave Conversation -> Archive
Leave Conversation, ignoring future replies -> Archive + Mute
As for this:
If that's a concern, I hope you've enabled proper 2FA on your account and use a randomly-generated password. Again, we don't force you to do this: you're professionals and should be capable of proper risk assessment for your own business. But you really should enable 2FA if you haven't already done so.
You will probably see a lot of people leaving this forum due to this. It is just a matter of time.
That’s their choice to make. We won’t lie to people just to keep them here.
@Magul, I've sent you a DM to try to understand your use case a bit better. (Yes, I see the irony.) Personally, I have moral reservations about implementing a feature that gives people a false sense of security or privacy, but perhaps if we have a better understanding of your goals, our team will be able to come up with something.
While I can certainly empathize with the original question (just for asking the question), I don't think this can ever be a convincing argument. That said, if after today there are suddenly large groups of people leaving the forum, it is clear that it was because of this.
I do not share that view and believe that the number of users will increase sharply. Especially now that irc is in decline...
A constructive way to go about this is to create a feature request in the Suggestions section.
If enough members are interested in it, then the developers would have a better understanding of why and more incentive to add it.
You can still do that.
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