Staff Functionality: Delete Conversation (Legally Required Functionality)


Well-known member
There have been a lot of requests for this functionality but it has never resulted in a good nor popular suggestion.
Many threads on the topic here:

Now on to what functionality is requested and why:

If a conversation message with rule breaches is reported or detected, then you cannot do much unless it is spam. The spam cleaner will delete the message.
However if the conversation includes harassment, hate speech, cyberbullying, child porn, money scams, terrorism or whatever illegal content, then the staff has no way to delete it.

This means that if the staff becomes aware of such illegal content before a user sees it (for example if there are multiple participants or if an addon reports illegal content), the staff has no way to prevent participants from being exposed to such content.

There also is the issue that already in some countries webmasters are legally required to remove such illegal content within 24 hours or another time frame. In some countries not complying to this may result in enormous fines. Even millions:€50m-fine-for-failure-to-remove-online-hate-crime-fake-news-fast-enough.127827/

I would like to request functionality for administrators or super-moderators to delete whole conversations by anyone. (permission based)
I can imagine 3 ways how this could be implemented:
  1. Admincp: search and delete functionality
  2. Report Center: Delete conversation from report. (1 click)
  3. Conversations: Delete Conversation from a Conversation Tools drop down similar to Thread Tools.
    This would be useful when there is access to the conversation. (by participation or by addon)
Upvote 11


Active member
With GDPR won't reading private conversations be a breach of privacy ?

Not to mention recording conversations which you would have to do via copy/paste as evidence to justify reading and deleting them...


Active member
Well, my forum has in the Terms and Rules a condition that Private Messages and Conversations shall never be read or inspected by admins.

Something that came about from the experience of other forums where, every few years, members would begin worriting themselves into tizzies believing admins had the faintest interest in reading their PMs.