While I approve of the Trust Level system and how it keeps the forums clean, the one issue I have with it is that users have no method to permanently obtain the privileges of Trust Level 3. Using my own situation as an example, I prefer to post long, involved threads that usually involve images, but such things take a fair portion of my limited time to write and format and generate pictures for. However, due to me skipping most threads because I don’t find them interesting (because they’re white noise complaints about matchmaking (or reworks (or teammates (or “I’M QUITTING HOTS FOREVER” posts)))), I have lost the relevant privileges to post high-effort threads like those (or even edit the ones I’ve already made), so now I have to game the system by passively scrolling through threads I don’t care about to hit an arbitrary number of Topics Viewed and Posts Read.
I don’t feel that Trust Level 3 should be permanent once achieved as a baseline, but I do feel that it or something like it should be available to obtain for effort-posters like me. Some examples of what I mean:
Trust Level 3 privileges can be permanently applied to an account if a thread or post made with Trust Level 3 privileges obtains 25 Likes. It’s a pretty straightforward concept: if you use your Trust Level to create something that’s widely liked, you get to keep your privilege without having to maintain it by constantly browsing the forums. The potential downside of this is that it might turn things into a popularity contest, but if someone is popular because they consistently make nice things, is it really an issue?
If a user reaches Trust Level 3 but is demoted due to inactivity, they go to Trust Level 2.5, which allows them to create threads with images but not replies with images. This one is also fairly straightforward: if you’ve reached Trust Level 3 and lost it, you can still make threads with fancy pictures, but not replies. Alternately, just bake this functionality directly into Trust Level 2!
If a user reaches Trust Level 3 but is demoted due to inactivity, threads and posts with images require Moderator approval. Slightly less straightforward because now additional human interaction is involved, but still pretty simple: you can still do the thing, but now you’ve gotta get permission.
I started using the new forums because I heard about the ability to post images and I was excited because I like making effortposts that people enjoy. I’ve previously used things like HeroesFire and Google Documents, but now I’m back to being frustrated with the official forums because I can’t post any of the five or so threads that I’ve been working on for the past few months until I jump through some arbitrary hoops.