How to Let Users Delete Their Own Accounts from WordPress


In the old rock classic “Hotel California” by the Eagles, there’s a famous line that goes …

You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave.

The Eagles song was about the seemingly glamorous but ultimately superficial and destructive life of the music world in 1970s Los Angeles. Although that may not be completely analogous to WordPress, what is the same is that while members on your site can go away, they can never really leave — not without a certain amount of trouble anyway. In other words, they can’t just delete their profiles and content whenever they want to “check out.”

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Heightened Awareness about Ownership and Privacy

As companies like Google, Facebook, and countless others seek to “capture” users and all their content in their systems, there is a new heightened awareness in the public as to who owns what. If a user can’t simply delete themselves and everything they’ve added to your system whenever they like, they may be hesitant to join it in the first place.

Of course users that wish to leave could contact you and get you to delete their profiles and posts, but that’s a lot of extra hassle for both parties.

 

Delete Me

The Delete Me plugin changes all that. If a user wants to check out for good with all their luggage (i.e. all their content), then it simply takes one click of a button.

The plugin allows you to control which user roles can delete their accounts, and it also comes with a few other options, such as which page users are directed to after they’ve deleted their accounts, the ability to send an email to the administrator when someone deletes an account, as well as some styling options.

 

By default, users can find the link to delete their accounts at the bottom of their profile page. When they click this link, they are prompted with a pop-up that asks them if they really want to delete the account.

 

You can find the Delete Me plugin here.

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Photo: Hand of a man using a hotel bell 

 

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Comments (2)

    • I don’t know. But I would think that this type of thing will be getting a lot more attention in the future with the explosion of social media and privacy/ownership issues.

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