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Major Problem for GDPR: Deleting member does NOT attribute posts to Guest!

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  • #16
    Originally posted by jagtpf View Post

    Technically that would work, but they could argue their posts are still on the Forum - and accessible to anyone who knew what a thread title was - plus you would at the same
    time as changing their name, also have to delete all the entries in their profile including email and IP address.
    It's not a single one button operation.
    Posts made on a forum donít fall under GDPR unless they actually contain personally identifiable data.

    Contrary to popular belief, GDPR does NOT give users the right to have every post they ever made deleted.
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    • #17
      Originally posted by Mark.B View Post

      Posts made on a forum donít fall under GDPR unless they actually contain personally identifiable data.

      Contrary to popular belief, GDPR does NOT give users the right to have every post they ever made deleted.
      And even then forums are allowed to retain data as part of a historical record. People are overreacting to the GDPR. The only data that is required to be deleted is data that could be used to determine the real identity of a person. The average forum post doesn't have any information that would allow for that.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by In Omnibus View Post

        And even then forums are allowed to retain data as part of a historical record. People are overreacting to the GDPR. The only data that is required to be deleted is data that could be used to determine the real identity of a person. The average forum post doesn't have any information that would allow for that.
        I accept that premise. Unfortunately the nature of posts on a forum that, for instance, provides a sounding board for photographs, stories, poems etc could be traced back to an individual - perhaps if they are then published under a real name. A Forum that needs emails (for contact) identifies, even obliquely, a post with an individual.

        I'm not necessarily overreacting, just trying to cover some of the questions being asked by members.

        Thanks for the input...

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        • #19
          Originally posted by jagtpf View Post

          I accept that premise. Unfortunately the nature of posts on a forum that, for instance, provides a sounding board for photographs, stories, poems etc could be traced back to an individual - perhaps if they are then published under a real name. A Forum that needs emails (for contact) identifies, even obliquely, a post with an individual.

          I'm not necessarily overreacting, just trying to cover some of the questions being asked by members.

          Thanks for the input...
          I don't care what court it is. You cannot be held liable for information someone chooses to publicize elsewhere (outside your website or forums) that could be connected to something they post inside your website or forums. That's called documenting yourself. I'm not accusing you or anyone else specifically of anything in terms of trying to comply with the law. I'm just saying people have to be allowed to operate in a normal business capacity and the law allows for that. If the deletion of data fundamentally alters the value of your services, and in most cases it would or does, then you are not obligated to delete the content. It's part of a necessary historical record.

          One simple example: A member begins a discussion on a health issue. The member is well-intentioned and asks serious questions. Everyone from medical professionals to home remedial hacks weighs in on the topic over the course of months or years and the discussion contains a plethora of information valuable to the discussion specifically and to the forum generally. The member disappears for months, the question(s) having been answered, or moves on to other discussions. Two years later the member returns and requests her or his account be deleted. Would it be reasonable to expect a forum to delete the entire discussion simply because the member who wants their account deleted started it? There isn't a court anywhere that would think so. In addition, virtually anything which has ever been indexed can be found somewhere, even if only in the "wayback machine." Therefore, deleting it from one forum years later probably doesn't even accomplish the intended purpose.

          I'm not telling you what to do because that would be legal advice but as a forum owner myself I know how much work goes into it. Allowing anyone to fundamentally or substantively alter the content and therefore the value of your forums for light and transient causes is not something I would take lightly. If there's actual personal data involved I would comply with the law. Otherwise, my blood, sweat, and tears is worth more than someone's feelings or need to feel special.

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          • #20
            I'm not too sure I asked for that little rant. I, also, don't wish to become a test court case in any future dispute with a member citing an uncertain interpretation of GDPR.

            But thank you for your input, and thankfully I don't operate as a business in any shape of form.

            Signing out.

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