"Screw You Guys, I'm Goin' Home"
June 11, 2010 5:10 PM   Subscribe

How to Permanently Delete Your Account on Popular Websites Also: Delete Your Account.

If the website you want to leave isn't listed, you might have luck with this article: How to Delete Accounts from Any Website, from pcmag.com.
posted by zarq (25 comments total) 42 users marked this as a favorite

 
Holy shit, it's an article on Smashing that isn't "50 Screengrabs Of Cool Orange Websites".

Holy shit2, that 'reader' button on Safari 5 makes Smashing almost tolerable.
So why do some sites make it so complicated? The answer is user retention. They don’t want you to delete your account. The hope is that if you have the account, you’ll use it at least occasionally, if for no other reason than curiosity about things you might have missed when you weren’t logged in.
More importantly, your inactive-but-not-deleted account means they can quote a large userbase to potential advertisers. "Reach five million* users!" is pretty impressive until you read that tiny asterisk and discover that only a few thousand accounts are actually active.
posted by egypturnash at 5:24 PM on June 11, 2010


And for completeness, since it's missing from the linked sites: how to delete or disable your MetaFilter account.
posted by jedicus at 5:27 PM on June 11, 2010


Shit. I tried logging on to facebook today to make sure my account had been deleted and it was all, like, "YOUR ACCOUNT HAS BEEN REACTIVATED." I've re-deactivated it. fuck-book.
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 5:37 PM on June 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


"Reach five million* users!" is pretty impressive until you read that tiny asterisk and discover that only a few thousand accounts are actually active

Advertisers that don't ask for 7-day active stats get what they deserve. That's online marketing 101 stuff.
posted by GuyZero at 5:48 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Shit. I tried logging on to facebook today to make sure my account had been deleted and it was all, like, "YOUR ACCOUNT HAS BEEN REACTIVATED." I've re-deactivated it. fuck-book.

obligatory? guess not.
posted by joe lisboa at 5:48 PM on June 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


I wanna see those 50 Screengrabs Of Cool Orange Websites.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:48 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Not obligatory, but much appreciated, Joe Beese. It felt like cattle prods to my Tron suit, alright.
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 5:54 PM on June 11, 2010


Not obligatory, but much appreciated, Joe Beese.

That may be the first and last time I am ever confused for Mr. Beese.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:01 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Stings, I bet.
posted by cavalier at 6:22 PM on June 11, 2010


It is a high compliment compared to what I usually get called. No offense taken.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:24 PM on June 11, 2010


Excellent stuff. I deleted my facebook the other day and I'm a little on edge about stumbling across something that will cancel the cancellation. I really don't trust them any further than I can throw them, and as they're a globally propagated network of electrical impulses, that's not very far.
posted by Dandeson Coates, Sec'y at 6:25 PM on June 11, 2010


Thanks! Getting rid of my fucking yahoo! account makes me feel like I've just been to confession- cleansed inside and out.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 6:37 PM on June 11, 2010


GOODBYE TO ALL MY ONLINE FRIENDS FOREVER.
posted by clarknova at 7:03 PM on June 11, 2010


MetaFilter: You can check out any time, but you can never leave.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:28 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


I wrote facebook a letter and said their privacy settings were too complicated. I suggested there should only be three levels:

1. Stuff Anyone Can Know
2. Stuff I Share with Most People
3. Stuff My Only Best Friends Can Know

So you guys have me to thank for the new settings.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:41 PM on June 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


Joe Cool!
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 7:48 PM on June 11, 2010


Be better if there was an option to delete everyone else's account. As long as they've still got theirs, I need mine.
posted by doublehappy at 7:54 PM on June 11, 2010 [6 favorites]


Holy shit, it's an article on Smashing that isn't "50 Screengrabs Of Cool Orange Websites".

For those of you not familiar with the ol' Smashing Mag, who may think egypturnash is being silly or inaccurate or just over-exaggerating:
60-70 Screengrabs of Cool Websites in Lithuania
25 Screengrabs of "Meet the Team" Pages
32 Screengrabs of "Bizarre, Time-Killing" Websites
34 Screengrabs of Examples of Good Archives Design (actually more than that since most include screengrabs of both the sites' front page and main archive page)

The Smashandgrabsite can get rather longwinded/obsessive/batshitcrazy, but at least they put all their long lists and articles on single pages.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:19 PM on June 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


The suggestions for MySpace are completely wrong. I clicked that "Cancel Account" link I don't know how many times, over a few months, and I never received the cancellation mail. I would receive other mails from MySpace. And, lacking a spam filter on that account, that wasn't it, either. I switched the associated email account to another account with a different service. This, too, failed. Something was obviously broken.

Emails to the MySpace "help" were not particularly fruitful. Eventually, technical support informed me that I could send them a picture of myself, with my userid number, holding up a sign saying "This is my salute" as some kind of proof, and after that they would accept that it was my account. This made little sense to me, as I had no photos up on MySpace and they would therefore be unable to match the salute photo to another photo. I do not like having my photo taken, so I declined.

They finally refused to delete my account and said it would be staying unless I decided to comply. Right! Here is what I did:

1) Went to 4chan and just surfed until I found a whole slew of unwholesome images. Note: This should take no more than five minutes, tops.
2) Placed various text macros (Impact, white outlined with black) upon the images, in some humorous theme regarding technical support and MySpace. Examples included ...
— An erect penis trapped in a Coke bottle. "I ACCIDENTALLY MY WHOLE MYSPACE"
— Advice puppy. "POST SMUT; CANCEL MYSPACE"
— An odd, medically inclined shot of someone's dilated anus (not Mr. Johnson's). "MY CANCELLATION EMAILS SEEM TO HAVE FALLEN INTO A GAPING HOLE"
— Bondage scene involving a pentagram in some kind of Wicker Man/Blair Witch thing. "I AM TRAPPED ON MYSPACE"
— A young man receiving what is known in the porn industry as a "facial." "I CAN'T SWALLOW YOUR TECH SUPPORT"
— A couple having doggystyle sex, only the man appears to have his arms out as if emulating a bat. "ALTHOUGH OTHER EMAILS FROM MYSPACE MAKE IT INTO MY ACCOUNT, CANCELLATION EMAILS FLY AWAY"
— Two women, wearing stormtrooper outfits from the waist up, humping. One is throwing the ole sieg heil. "THIS IS MY SALUTE"

3) Upload these eighteen new images to the photos section of my MySpace account.
4) Navigate to "Report abuse" link and point at my account.

At this point, I had spent about three months, nagging every so often, increasing in frequency, trying to get my account deleted. No dice. Total time after hitting the abuse link until my account was deleted: 10 minutes.

Then I closed my ticket with a mocking email about how I made them close my account, anyway, without the "salute."
posted by adipocere at 10:08 PM on June 11, 2010 [31 favorites]


@adipocere You are such a punk!
posted by Twang at 2:58 AM on June 12, 2010


Holy shit, it's an article on Smashing that isn't "50 Screengrabs Of Cool Orange Websites".

Hairy donkey balls. Smashing Magazine is an excellent resource for all sorts of shit if you're a person who makes websites, and only some of it involves the color orange.

What it isn't is great Metafilter fodder, but: oh well.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:16 AM on June 12, 2010


Neither site tells you how to delete your AOL account.
posted by Obscure Reference at 7:00 AM on June 12, 2010


Adipocere's method works well with Facebook too. FB mods can disable accounts.
posted by Avelwood at 9:11 AM on June 12, 2010


Much appreciated. The last time I checked I'd have to leave my Yahoo account inactive for some unspecified time period before it would be deleted.
posted by Lokisbane at 5:48 AM on June 13, 2010


It's interesting that although they have very detailed instructions on how to delete your account, they don't discuss how actually deleted the data really gets. Remember kids, once you type it into the internet, it's there forever.
posted by Phredward at 7:47 AM on June 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


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