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  1. 775 votes

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    Planned  ·  Anonymous responded

    We’re reviewing this. Curious how long you think would be ok.

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    metaconstruct commented  · 

    For the record, I submitted a ticket about this issue with the following explanation:

    "The 'Username Rename and Recycling policy' doesn't provide strong enough guarantees about whether or not certain accounts are inactive, and is not predicated on a strong enough definition of an active account. This is either an oversight, or indicates that the policy does not actually reflect the process for determining which accounts are inactive and may be recycled."

    "Active accounts are currently defined as 'having logged in/visited the site' and 'having viewing activity' in a 12-month window. However, these are the only two actions which do not require an account. Users who want to use Twitch for solely viewing channels can simply browse to a channel without creating an account."

    "The qualifications for an active account 'ought to rely on whether or not users have recently taken advantage of the features that actually require an account (i.e. interacting with other users, using the chat, following channels, subscribing to channels, etc). There is no reason for an account to be 'active' if none of these features are used, because any 'use of the platform which doesn't involve these features' is indistinguishable from 'use of the platform without an account.'"

    "This is a serious issue for individuals who are actually invested in using the platform beyond simply 'browsing to the site and viewing a channel,' because usernames are most important to those people. In the same sense, it also puts an unfair amount of 'power' in the hands of people who may register an account but do not actually use the features that are offered by registering an account (in the sense that, if the current policy is truly accurate to the process used, it would be trivial for unfaithful users to park accounts with desirable usernames, among other things)."

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    metaconstruct commented  · 

    A simpler way of putting this is that the qualifications for an inactive account are *not strict enough.* In fact, they're so lax (or at least, *appear to be*) that it's hostile to people who actually have a reason to use the Twitch features which actually require an account.

    The whole service benefits from stronger guarantees (which Twitch should *communicate* to users) about whether or not accounts are active-enough for Twitch to not deactivate and recycle, so much so that it's hard for me to believe that the current policy tells the whole story.

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    metaconstruct commented  · 

    I've been waiting on an inactive Justin.tv username from 2007 for as long this account has existed (since 2013), and it's frustrating because the policy and process for username recycling does not reflect any actual guarantee that certain accounts are inactive.

    If the current username recycling process depends on other factors, Twitch should make this clear. Otherwise, the current definition of an active account is very confusing.

    "Log-in activity and viewing activity every 12 months" does not adequately capture whether or not a real human being uses the service, and does not capture whether or not someone uses the service in a way that's substantially different from not having an account at all. Those requirements are two things that you do not need an account for: visiting the site, and watching video.

    The requirements for an active account should depend on parts of the service that one actually *needs* an account for, i.e. chatting, following accounts, interacting with other users, etc. That way, Twitch provides an *actual guarantee* that seemingly-inactive accounts are being used by actual human beings.

    metaconstruct supported this idea  ·