Currently, we deduplicate activists based on email address, and email address is required by all activists. However, starting at the end of April 2020, activists will be deduplicated by email address AND mobile number. Both email address and mobile number must be unique.
This means that if an existing activist is uploaded again or takes action with the same email address and mobile number, we will layer the new data on top of the existing activist record. New custom field values, tags, action, or donation history will be added to the activist record that matches up to the existing email address and mobile number.
What if there's an existing activist with the same mobile number, but different email address?
The activists will not be merged. We will create a new activist record for the email address and mobile number that was just added, and remove the mobile number from the existing activist record. The existing activist record will keep the email address. No action history, donation history, tags, custom fields, or notes will be brought over to the new activist record.
For example, if activist Skippy is currently stored in your group with the email address email@example.com and his mobile number (202) 123-4567, and later he signs a petition with the email address firstname.lastname@example.org and the same mobile number, we will remove the mobile number from his email@example.com record in order to store it with his firstname.lastname@example.org record.
Note that we do not expect this to be an issue with the majority of your activists. Most activists use one email address and mobile number for advocacy.
What if there's an existing activist with the same email address, but different mobile number?
The new mobile number will overwrite the existing mobile number on the activist record. For example, if activist Willow is currently stored in your group with the email address email@example.com and her mobile number (202) 987-6543, and later she signs a petition with the email address firstname.lastname@example.org but with a new mobile number (123) 456-7890, we will replace the old 202 number with the new 123 number.
How does merging work?
You can read more about how merging works here.