Deleting rows should be made more difficult for users

I’m trying to understand the logic of an app that allows for a Maker to create documents for Editors but not give that Maker the ability to control the ability to allow Editors to add, edit, and delete. The super coarse option of limiting a user to only their own rows is not sufficient.

I see questions from this community since 2019 related to this. We’re asked to trust to roll out tools for our users to use without the ability to limit the kind of damage that, for example, a disgruntled employee can do to a database using the “Delete row everywhere” button.

Related, why do only buttons get a “Disable if” option? This should be a property for every type of control - including something like “Delete this row everywhere”

I have two responses to this. The first is easy:

  1. It’s definitely on the roadmap. Coda is thinking about permissions around creating, reading, editing and deleting
  2. I think they’re a mixed blessing

You mention the “damage that, for example, a disgruntled employee can do to a database.” Coda has a way to protect this kind of information: it’s backed up in your doc history. In principle, you can go back and dredge up the missing data. Of course, it’s not a perfect solution because you might not notice that they deleted the row, they might have deleted lots of rows, and you might have since added to the doc, so merging the old doc and the new one is hard.

That said, permissions are expensive. Not for docs but for orgs. They slow organizations down and are a huge source of inefficiencies. “Hey so and so, I need to change this can you invite me to the doc, give me delete permissions, etc?” Two days later you get a response, what were you working on, again?

Of course, there are totally valid usecases. But they have to be done well.

P.S. the workaround for this is currently Cross-Doc. But doesn’t work in all circumstances.


Ooh, something else to add.

One alternative to permissions on rows is to make it easier to merge divergent edit histories.

Kinda like a git for Coda.

If it were easy to track, revert, and merge changes made to docs, then you could rely on that tool, instead of control and prevention of changes.

Just something worth mentioning

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