If a user deletes their account, pass projects on if there are other managers

I recently had a situation where I was a manager of a collection project. I was really into it, and I had written a journal post, and sent personal messages to several users asking if they would like to join. Today I received a message in my message thread with the admin of the project, but all of the messages were from “deleted user”. No problem - that user probably had a good reason to delete their account, but the project got deleted as well. I would find it useful if when a user deletes their account, but their project(s) have other manager(s), one of the other managers (or if there are none of those, curators) would become the admin. I put quite a bit of work into that project, and it is too bad that it is all gone without warning.

Probably not such a frequent situation.
for this project I’ll probably wait a couple of days, and maybe make it again.

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Yeah, I find that pretty unacceptable that my own content could be involuntarily deleted by the action of someone else removing their account. Within the context of iNaturalist they did not have any claim of ownership or copyright to the content you added. I wonder if there are other contexts beside projects where this situation could happen?

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in this case I already started the project again with another user, but I would really hate for this to happen again. see also: https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/a-group-for-young-naturalists-birders/4776

Guides? as far as I understand those won’t be updated though.

I suppose one could argue that IDs and comments left on a deleted user’s observations fall into the same category. A deleted account takes all of those with them. Which all goes to a previous long discussion here:


That topic dealt mostly with the loss of content created by the deleted user. But your situation goes to the other side of that coin – content created by ongoing users being deleted without their knowledge or permission, due to someone else leaving the site.

To me, that is one of the strongest arguments for keeping and merely anonymizing content of deleted users – when consistent with applicable laws, and when it would infringe on the content of other users.


I think this is entirely separate from handling content owned by deleted users, since it is for group-owned content. And if projects can’t be set to have multiple owners, that should be essential to this request. Projects shouldn’t be dependent on a single user for continuation if the creators want to share it with others.