Kitty, thanks for your thoughts.
My understanding of Dale's concern was that the Leader deleted sources, even the suspect ones, but did not replace them with anything, much less anything better. And yes, I've seen several g2g posts where people are upset that sources have been deleted-- but only when something else/better is not put in their place.
Speaking for myself, I've never seen anyone upset when better sources are put in place of bad ones. (And I am frequently thanked when I do so.) Yours is the first comment I've seen expressing concern about replacing weak sources with stronger ones (unless I've totally misunderstood other posts about this topic).
I also don't think it's cut and dry. For me, it depends on what kind of source is being replaced.
On PGM profiles, for example, if I am working on a profile that cites an online family tree for let's say a marriage, but I have found the actual marriage record, I will replace that online family tree as a source with a citation (and hopefully link) to the actual marriage record. I see absolutely no value in retaining the link to the online family tree.
I will retain information about, say, a genealogy published in 1887, but I might be more likely to put it under "See also" under the Sources section (assuming I have a stronger source for whatever fact it was used for). Wherever it is, I typically add a comment along the lines of: "use with caution; this publication does not cite its sources" or "subsequent research has revealed inaccuracies in this publication; use with caution."
You do raise another interesting idea though-- using the narrative as a record of the research done on the person. The style guide says this about the purpose of the narrative:
At its most basic, the purpose of the narrative is to tell the story of your ancestor, by providing more detail about the vital statistics, including explanations and information about where you got the information (source citations).
The narrative can also be used to describe anything else you think would help a reader understand the person or that would help someone else who may be researching the same family or a family with similar characteristics. For example, when and/or why the spelling of a surname changed.
While this purpose does make reference to "explanations and information about where you got the information (source citations)," it does not specifically indicate that the narrative be used as a record of research done, which is a different type of document. (These are the kinds of articles published in NGS Quarterly and VERY interesting to read if you're interested in the research process.)
With the exception of what goes under "Disputed Origins" (where's it's vital to understand the research that has been done to address the dispute), I'm not sure what place recording the research done has in a wikitree profile. Not that it's a bad idea, but does it belong in the narrative? I don't know.
Interesting to think about. What do others think?