About a year ago, in a distressed state, I posted a question on Interpersonal Stack Exchange which I would rather delete. (I know that was a while ago, but I want to remove all traces of the situation from the internet.) The post was downvoted, closed, and is probably not of use to anyone else since it was regarding a very unique and specific situation. My account was suspended when I tried to delete the question through editing, and I tried explaining the situation to the mods. I even proposed an alternative edit that would not invalidate the answers but which would remove the identifying details and make the post less embarrassing. I then received the following reply: "Okay, let me be very clear one last time: Editing the post like you've tried or are proposing is not an option. There are others outlined in that help center article."

The only other option I see under their help page is to ask that the post be dissociated from my account. However, dissociating the post from my account (or even deleting my account) would not make me less identifiable (especially to anyone familiar with the situation), and it would only permanently embed the post into stack exchange. Also, their own rules permit editing to generalize a question and remove identifying information. I feel they're deliberately antagonizing me, as is evident by their rude reply, plus any reasonable person would allow the post to be removed or at least edited given the circumstances. Is there anyone to report this to and/or any way to appeal their decision?

  • meta.stackexchange.com/a/22676/282094
    – Rob
    Commented Jun 10, 2021 at 6:08
  • 12
    I understand that your situation is frustrating but removing all of the content from the question other than a single sentence overview is not what you're describing here when you say that you proposed an alternative edit. You removed nearly 8000 characters from the question.
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 10, 2021 at 6:23
  • @Catija, the alternative edit I proposed (privately to mods) was about a paragraph and included the overall synopsis without so many details. If you're on their mod team, I would like to come up with a reasonable edit.
    – Gemini
    Commented Jun 10, 2021 at 6:58
  • 10
    You do realise your posts are likely hosted elsewhere by now so no amount of changing them on Stack Exchange is going to remove all trace of them from the internet. Most of your posts are available on the Internet Archive for instance. Commented Jun 10, 2021 at 7:14

1 Answer 1


You can use the contact form linked at the bottom of the page, e.g. https://interpersonal.stackexchange.com/contact for IPS.

Note that vandalism is not allowed because when you post on SE, you license SE to distribute said content. I hate to word it this way, but the only tip I can give is "think about the impacts of what you're posting before you post it".

Now, if there is sensitive data or information that could get you in trouble or a bad situation or something otherwise harmful, you can edit just those parts out and flag it for a moderator to redact the previous revisions (keep in mind that revision history is public - editing it out really hardly solves the problem).

However, vandalising your own posts, complaining when moderators enforce SE's policies, and then accusing them of antagonizing you because of your missteps isn't a good way to accomplish what you want. Calmly explain the problem and ask a moderator to help you remove any sensitive information without destroying the whole post, and if they refuse to do something reasonable, then you can submit a contact request.

But the line is drawn here - vandalising your entire post isn't the right way to go about it.

it would only permanently embed the post into stack exchange

Yes, that's the point in SE.

Also, their own rules permit editing to generalize a question and remove identifying information.

Yes, but you destroyed the entire post's content. That's different.

  • 12
    "Think about the impacts of what you're posting before you post it" is the most crucial thing, especially on the internet. Stack Exchange's posts are known to be copied and republished as-is on other Q&A sites, and even if the posts on SE are deleted, there's no guarantee that those sites will also delete the posts. Commented Jun 10, 2021 at 6:02

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