I am working on an enterprise design software. Colleagues can collaborate on the same file.

A person can create a folder in which to save similar files. This person can invite colleagues to collaborate to this folder. 
So this folder will appear on every invitee’s dashboard.

They all can edit the files within the folder but who can move a file out or delete it?
 I thought that who creates the file is the owner, anyone can work on it but only the owner can move the file to another folder or delete it. Right?

A non-owner will be able to "Make a copy" or "Copy this another Folder" if he/she wants to share that file outside this folder. If a person leaves this folder/space of collaboration and owns some files then needs to transfer ownership.

Are there any flaws in the logic? Image to help thanks

a busy cat


You have to think about all the use cases in a situation like this. And also take a look at what existing tools do to tackle such problems. Incase of sharing rights to a folder, you can take a look at how Google Drive works. When you share a folder with someone on Drive, you get the option to have them as either an editor or a viewer.

In Google drive, even the editor can delete files from the folder. In case you only want the owner to be able to have delete permissions, you are going to have to make 3 different roles: Owner, Editor and viewer.

The "Make a copy" logic seems fine.

Finally, you have to think about the case where a person leaves the organization, but does not transfer the ownership to anyone. What happens to the folder then? This has happened to me while using Figma. A person left the firm I worked for and did not transfer the ownership of their files to anyone else. We only had view permissions. But thankfully we were able to copy the contents of the files and make our own versions.

Building a similar fail-safe should be the solution to this problem. Editors should be able to make copies of folders which do not have any owners. OR if the owner leaves, without transferring permissions, the first editor they invited shoudl automatically get the ownership of the file.

  • Thanks Piyush. Will have to think on what you said. I looked at some collaborative tools and they reserve the delete action only to the owner, which in my case I reflected it in the ownership of the folder. Thanks again on your input.
    – Henry R.
    Nov 16 '20 at 9:55

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