Could we allow for "Trusted Users" (>= 20K rep) to be able to see deleted users contributions to the Stack Exchange?

They can already see deleted questions and answers, why not a deleted contributions?

So for example I would be able to see all of the contributions that were made by the user who gave me this great answer to my question.

Searching for user:1385191 does not work at all...

  • 2
    Isn't deleting a user a hard-delete? The way their posts get anonymized makes me suspect that. – CodesInChaos Aug 10 '12 at 18:46
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    @Neal, why would we need to? – Frédéric Hamidi Aug 10 '12 at 18:47
  • @CodesInChaos not at all. – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:47
  • @FrédéricHamidi see my update. I want to see all the answers and question that a deleted user contributed to SO. – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:48
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    It's pretty close to a hard delete. Mods don't get to see deleted user accounts either; which is sort of unfortunate for when a deleted user comes back with more spam/etc. We just get a 404 page. I too would like a list of their answers/questions – Ben Brocka Aug 10 '12 at 18:48
  • @Neal, ah, fair enough :) IIRC though, some users actually want all their posts to be disassociated from their account when they ragequit^W find more interesting things to do. Your proposal would go against this kind of request. – Frédéric Hamidi Aug 10 '12 at 18:54
  • @AnnaLear -- care to comment? – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:54
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    @amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA Geez, give me a second or thirty. :P – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 18:55
  • @FrédéricHamidi Deleted accounts aren't always ragequits. – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 18:57
  • @AnnaLear naaah :-P not allowed ^_^ – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:58
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    @FrédéricHamidi We can do that too, though it's a bit different from account deletion. Deleting your account isn't the only way to disassociate yourself from your posts. – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 19:03

In this unusual case, where you know the user's old ID, you can take advantage of Google's constant indexing of SO. Search for

site:stackoverflow.com user1385191


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  • 1
    I'm satisfied with this answer because it does technically allow you to "see all of the contributions" the user made. You wanted them sorted? Good luck with that. – Pops Aug 10 '12 at 19:04

Nobody can see deleted accounts - not even developers. Deleted accounts are fully deleted. There's nothing to see basically by definition.

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  • So how can I search for contributions by the afformentioned deleted user? Searching user:1385191 yields nothing.... – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:55
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    Um... You can't? :D – user102937 Aug 10 '12 at 18:55
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    @amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA You cannot. And you're not supposed to. When an account is deleted, it is disassociated from all existing posts by design. – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 18:56
  • @AnnaLear yes but their user ID gets put there in it's stead. shouldn't that count for something? – Naftali aka Neal Aug 10 '12 at 18:56
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    The CC:Wiki license specifies that a user may ask that his account be disassociated from his posts, which is essentially what an account deletion is. That doesn't mean sorta disassociated, or kinda disassociated, it means disassociated. Which basically amounts to deletion. Not the kind of soft deletion where you put a delete flag on the record, but real, actual deletion. SE might even scrub the hard drives with a Brillo pad, just to be sure. – user102937 Aug 10 '12 at 18:57
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    @amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA No, it shouldn't. There is no active user with that ID, so you cannot search by it. The whole point of deleting an account is to make it inaccessible, unreferenced, and unlinked. We're not going to implement "soft" account deletion. – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 19:02
  • @Robert, ah, so when you receive a request for disassociation, you actually delete the account? There is no middle ground? – Frédéric Hamidi Aug 10 '12 at 19:02
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    @FrédéricHamidi: I don't have the ability to disassociate individual posts, but the devs and the community team do. – user102937 Aug 10 '12 at 19:04
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    @FrédéricHamidi Nah, they pass the request to us and we push a button to remove account association from the specific post. – Adam Lear Aug 10 '12 at 19:04

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