general friend enquiry
No general rules. I tend to give less time during an event. (say a week or two). I figure if the player was going to find time to be active, an event would be that time. I give a few extra weeks say 4-6 if a non event. Inactivity is a non issue for me if there is no event.
I also am less forgiving the more friend requests I have in queue.
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During events I only give them 2 days unless it is known they are gone for a reason that prevents them from playing.
Not during events I expand it to 4-5 days.
Thats just me since I can get plenty of neighbors whenever I want in the friend section. Having forum regulars who are both on here every day and play the game every day is generally from what I've seen the best way to go from what I have found.
Sometimes, if a profile is corrupt, if when visiting your SF makes mine crash, I will realise there is an issue and give you time until I can visit your SF again.
I think it is up to you and what you are comfortable doing.
I have close neighbors that I will take my time before deleting, I would wait for a couple of weeks of inactivity before deleting. The other neighbors, I will give a day or two before deleting. These are neighbors that I am not close to, or real life friends.
In the end, it is all up to you.
One person on my list actually put "Camping" with the dates spelled out in bushes. Awesome way to do it.
There are only two ways to avoid deleting someone who is absent due to technical issues. Never delete anyone, or contact each one before deleting.
In my case, I have those I delete dragged off to a North Korean prison. That way I don't have to worry about whether or not they're still trying to play. The peace of mind is worth the modest cost.