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It's because rm -rf "$STEAMROOT/"* will evaluate as rm -rf "/"* if $STEAMROOT for some reason is blank or unset, which is what happened here. (As someone in that discussion mentioned, a little more Bash knowledge might have suggested using rm -rf "${STEAMROOT:?}/"* instead, to force it to (at least) error if it is empty or unset.)

So literally the only thing in common with the article is that they involve bash

I can't help you if you don't see the connection.

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