Merging an account with no-longer-valid Yahoo email address (and no password) with another account #question #changeemail #login #access

Doug Ruth

I have an unusual (?) situation regarding merging accounts, which I didn't see explicitly addressed in the forum or the Owners Manual.  Although Post #3122 peripherally addresses it and leads me to believe it may be a hopeless situation. 

My group ported from Yahoo Groups in Nov. 2019.  A member was using a Yahoo email address, but at that time he did NOT take the steps to create a account using that Yahoo email address. Subsequently he deleted/nuked that Yahoo email address, so it is no longer valid, and "his" (never-completed) account now shows as Bounced (red B icon) due to the invalid Yahoo email address.  Subsequent to that, he created a account using a email address, and joined/subscribed to our group.

So he has 2 accounts:
  • 1 inaccessible one, using the now-invalid Yahoo email address, with (apparently) no password set.  His historical posts (when still with Yahoo Groups) show under this account.
  • and his new account, using the email address
To clean up my group's "Bounce lists", I'd like to get rid of the old account (the one using the now-invalid Yahoo email address).  Preferably by merging it with his new account (the one using the email address).

But it seems like this may not be possible.  As an admin/moderator, I tried changing the email address on the old account to his new email address, but it says "That email address is already registered.".   And it seems no one can access/login to the old account, since it has no password and an invalid email address.  Am I correct, or is there a way for either me or him to merge these 2 accounts?

If it is not possible, I will probably just delete the old account.  From another post I made the other day, his content (posts, photos) will remain, and remain attributed to him, just not listed as his posts under his new account.  "Fortunately" he was not a prolific poster.

But if it is not possible to merge them, it seems like a "feature change" such as the following would permit a merging in such a case:
  1. Allow owner/moderator to modify a member's email address.
    • I realize this has potential for abuse?
    • Maybe only for the case of a bounced email address and no password? 
    • Such an account is essentially inaccessible otherwise, so allowing in this case would seem reasonable.
  2. Maybe only allow the new email address to be an email address that is already registered?
  3. If the new email address is already registered, after clicking Save, things proceed as for a "normal" merge:
  4. When you click Save - a special prompt pops up asking if you want to "Merge" the two Ids.
  5. If you want to merge - click yes,
  6. This will prompt to send an email to the "good" account which will have a link to click on,
  7. Then sign in as that userid and say "Yes" to Merge. 
  8. The identities will be merged with all the content and subscriptions from them under the good email address and the id you didn't want will be deleted. 
I'm not sure how difficult it would be to implement that, but it seems like it addresses a need, albeit maybe an infrequent one.
Doug Ruth

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