One year ago, I was helped by one of the Stack Overflow users to solve a technical issue and he opened a chat room to better understand my problem. Just today by serendipity, I found out in Google images that my chat room is still alive and there are some images that were posted for troubleshooting but I thought they were going to be deleted but this is not the case.

I want to know:

  1. How can I stop this chat room to be alive? I don't want this chat room to appear in Google.
  2. If I don't have enough permissions in Stack Overflow to kill this chat room then to whom may I refer to submit this request?
  3. I opened this chat room and I flagged these images for moderator's attention, so he/she can attend my request to stop displaying them but, will I be heard? I mean, how do I know that this request will be attended by any moderator or member from the Stack Overflow team?

I really like Stack Overflow because it helps me a lot in understanding more about programming and I want it to improve day by day, so if anybody can refer this question or guide me to whom I should refer to attend my request then I will truly appreciate your effort.

  • 1
    Related if not dupe: How do you delete a room on chat? - by the way, your room is not "active" per se, it's frozen. Looks like you did the correct thing already by flagging it for mod attention and asking them to remove them. – Jenayah Oct 19 '18 at 17:47
  • Out of curiosity, does a user gets notified if his request was approved when he/she flags an image? – abautista Oct 19 '18 at 17:54

TL;DR: You can't completely remove it, but a moderator can soft-delete it.

Chat rooms on Stack Exchange (including Stack Overflow) are default-public. They are accessible to anyone and are indexed by Google, and remain so indefinitely.

Chat rooms that aren't active for a while (such as yours) get frozen. That means that nobody can post new messages in there, and the chat room doesn't appear on the "active rooms" list any more - that means it's hidden by default on the rooms list. What that doesn't do is stop it being indexed by Google or restrict access at all - everyone can still read it, they just can't add new messages.

Moderators (and some other users in specific circumstances, but that's not relevant here) can delete a chat room. That's a "soft" deletion - the room is marked as deleted, which hides it from everyone who doesn't have at least 10,000 reputation on its parent site (in this case Stack Overflow), and removes it from the active rooms list as with freezing. This doesn't stop it being indexed, though, and it doesn't completely remove the record of its existence.

You're not likely to be able to get the room completely removed. Doing that would require the SE team to manually remove it, which they don't generally do except in exceptional circumstances, which this doesn't appear to be. You can, however, ask a moderator to soft-delete the room, which mostly hides it from view.

  • How can I ask a moderator to soft delete this room ? or what's the normal procedure for asking a moderator to proceed with a soft delete? – abautista Oct 19 '18 at 18:06
  • Soft-delete means mark as private, right? – Sonic the Anonymous WizHog Oct 19 '18 at 18:11
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    @SonictheInclusiveWerehog No. Private rooms are for moderation purposes only. I mean hitting the delete link next to the freeze link. – ArtOfCode Oct 19 '18 at 18:17
  • Just asking about how it's performed internally. – Sonic the Anonymous WizHog Oct 19 '18 at 18:17
  • 1
    @AlejandroBR Use a custom moderator flag. On any message in the room, hover over it, click the gray/white down arrow that appears, and select "flag for moderator" - use the text field to indicate you want the room deleted. You can link to this post for additional context. – ArtOfCode Oct 19 '18 at 18:18
  • @SonictheInclusiveWerehog Much the same way posts are soft-deleted - it's only visible to 10k+ users. – ArtOfCode Oct 19 '18 at 18:18
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    Thanks for all your help! The soft-delete was done. – abautista Oct 19 '18 at 18:54

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