Thanks for asking, that's a great question.
Not so long ago there was a rather clueless fellow on Programmers who had asked a series of questions, all about his evil project manager. If I remember correctly it was 5 or 6 questions in about 10 days, and the guy was giving us way more information that was necessary, mostly specifics on how his project manager was mistreating everyone, wasn't really deserving of their role, etc.
At some point, I checked his profile, and to my surprise (and amusement) I found out that he was proudly advertising the company he worked for in his "About me" box, even mentioning the specific department he was in, all complete with a link to his blog where he blogged under his real name. The company was a big IT corporate, the kind of company you expect to have at least one marketing guy/gal scouting the internet for mentions of their name.
I posted a comment on his latest question, and when he read it he emptied his "About me" box, removed the link to his blog and edited out the backstory and all incendiary remarks from his questions (and deleted several of his comments). What was extremely amusing is that when all the personal stuff were removed, his project manager sounded like a really capable manager, and the OP like someone who should perhaps concentrate a bit more on doing their job instead of complaining all the time.
The moral of the story: If your main motivation is to whine about your supervisor and/or your co-workers, The Workplace and Stack Exchange in general is not where you should be doing it. And we, as a community, should be extra vigilant if we spot a buffoon using our site to vent.
But that's not really the case with the questions in question. They are all a bit sensitive, and can potentially get the OPs in trouble, but if we remove the sensitive / embarrassing parts they wouldn't really stand as questions.
Since one of the questions is mine, I'll shamelessly admit that I cheated (a bit), it's not a current issue I'm facing and I did fuzzy the details a bit. Certainly my co-workers from that time will recognize exactly what and who I'm talking about, and at least one of them is active on Stack Exchange, but that wouldn't really get me in trouble as I hadn't had any relationship with the company for years. It is an actual practical problem I had to deal with (every day), but that was a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away (same with this question).
However old issue or not, people who I currently work with are aware of my Stack Exchange activities, and may not appreciate the fact that I brought sensitive issues in a public arena. Well, that's something each one of us has to take into consideration and decide for themselves, it's no different that posting anywhere else on the internet. We are all (?) adults here, and we need to be ready to face the consequences of our actions.
If by any chance you regretted asking a question, you have two options:
- You can ask the moderators to delete it (if you can't delete it yourself due to upvoted answers) or
- You can ask Stack Exchange to disassociate the question from your account.
Generally speaking if it's a good question with good answers it would be preferable to go with the second option, the only thing you need to do is send an email to
[email protected] with a link to the question and your profile. But don't count on them to do it every time you post something sensitive, once or twice it'd be okay, if you keep posting questions that could get you in trouble, well, you deserve to get in trouble.
And, lastly, you can always post your sensitive questions anonymously via a throw away account. At the end of the day you should only care for getting a good answer, the reputation and badges you may earn from the question are largely irrelevant. Fair warning though: If you do something fishy with your throw away account, like vote for your main account, you will not get away with it.