In this particular question, I saw the OP's deleted account written as "Please Delete Account":

Deleted OP account

But not like user11471113. Why?

The profile deletion policy on the SE network says:

Your questions and answers will remain on the site but will be disassociated and anonymized (the author will be listed as "user1073525") and will not indicate your authorship even if you later return to the site.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ When did you read the deletion policy on SE? Recently, right? The post in question was posted in 2011, more than 11 years later. Policies have changed over time. SE policies, and site-specific policies, as well. $\endgroup$
    – amWhy
    Jan 18, 2023 at 14:11
  • $\begingroup$ But clearly, the username does not reveal the name of the OP who requested deletion of the account? Hence, it all leads to the same result, anonymity. $\endgroup$
    – amWhy
    Jan 18, 2023 at 14:15
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ (1) The account deletion process in the early days of SE involved updating one's "About Me" section in the profile and/or one's username to read "please delete me"; (2) at that time, the username of a deleted account would not be automatically genericized. It's a little difficult to track down all the early history, but here is a relevant comment on Meta SE that you can use to go down the rabbit-hole, if you're interested: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/155901/… $\endgroup$ Jan 18, 2023 at 14:34
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ That comment by Sonic the Anonynous Hedgehog basically says, "[...] for account deletions prior to 2011 [...] the displayed username in most places would not be changed to their user code before deletion." $\endgroup$ Jan 18, 2023 at 14:36
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ You can find various usernames on posts without owners from this SEDE query. (I have omitted the migrated questions - since that might be a different reason why a post is without an owner.) $\endgroup$ Jan 18, 2023 at 23:38
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Tangentially, this answer from December 2013 is similar - no owner and the username does not have the form usernnnn. $\endgroup$ Jan 19, 2023 at 5:52


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