Before May 25, 2019 - The help on all sites doesn't cover three things well enough IMO.
- It doesn't acknowledge that in some cases - community managers will approve a deletion that ends up changing reputation substantially in one event (sometimes thousands of rep points revert in rare cases where the deleted user voted broadly or over years towards the recipient accounts).
- It doesn't define what very high reputation score means (absolute or relative to what?).
- It doesn't point people to this great answer (or other history from 2010/2012 timeframe) that I presume is what we have today in place when User deletion reverts previous voting and reputation totals of other accounts: https://meta.stackexchange.com/a/268608/165931
I'd like the help to summarize more closely the process we have in place today.
I'm not asking to change the rules on votes being permanent or not permanent or some other compromise. That’s been asked many times already.
In the near term, if we had edits to the help article, moderating all the sites might be a little easier to explain this removal is by design and intended. Here are the soft / incorrect parts I'd like to see tuned up:
This removal occurs whenever a user is deleted, unless that user had a very high reputation score.
Additionally, please refine this line:
In such cases, the staff use a special deletion that preserves the votes, resulting in no reputation change for those who had been voted on by that user.
If there is a deletion tool that can override the vote preservation, please state that plainly. This sounds like people are arbitrarily cooking the vote books to me. I don't get any impression that's what actually happens in practice, but the words are too soft IMO here and should be sharp and clear.
I personally fully support when removal has happed each and every time I've seen it happen, but would like the help to be more transparent about how and why the design contemplates reversing large periods and volume of votes both up and down when patterns come to light after the fact and this change is blamed on a user being removed.
I understand people have strong opinions about whether rep should be removed or not, so the least we can do is be clear and plain about how and what is happening and not have a wrong / unclear help article.