NEW RULE: About deleting threads and punishments
Didn't know about that thread-deletion thing, is it possible to request an approval to a mod before the thread gets deleted?
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I didn't know this was happening or this was possible. When a thread is deleted, the points should have been erased too. It looks like a possible forum coding bug.

Also, If some members create a thread, a permission of not allowing to delete their thread can be implemented too. If they do, they would need a valid reason.
Notifying would be enough. We can always un-delete it.

Unfortunately it's a side-effect of the delete button softdeleting a thread rather than actually deleting it. This allows us as staff to spot people hiding activity that's against the rules. It's been a useful tool for us in the past and will remain a useful tool, but with things like the point system it demonstrably has its drawbacks.
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(2018-03-16, 9:07:44 am)supertanno Wrote:  @Gries
Notifying would be enough. We can always un-delete it.

Unfortunately it's a side-effect of the delete button softdeleting a thread rather than actually deleting it. This allows us as staff to spot people hiding activity that's against the rules. It's been a useful tool for us in the past and will remain a useful tool, but with things like the point system it demonstrably has its drawbacks.

I guess is still using Older version of New Points System since this has already been fixed in the 2.1 Update nearly 2 years ago.
Quote:Points are now removed when soft deleting (but not removed twice if the post/thread is permanently)
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Since it still grants points when deleting the post after making it, shouldn't deleting posts option be disabled for members? Personally I wasn't aware that such a issue could happen so some members might accidentally abuse it for if they change their mind about making that certain post. It could get mistaken for abuse even if the member just wants the post gone and not actually want to keep the posts granted from making that post.
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The last few days have been hard times for me in regards to this topic and replies made within it by community members. I have been fighting with myself for days about whether I should post anything here or simply leave it be as it is. Finally, I have made my decision and here is my reply to the general situation and a few replies made by the community members.

I would also like to apologize in advance if anyone feels irritated or offended in some way. It is not my goal to make any of you angry. I always want only the best for the forum, the community and the sponsors/providers.


I would like to apologize to you and anyone else on behalf of the staff if you felt accused, irritated or offended by this announcement. Please note that no one has even mentioned your name in the announcement before you published your reply in this topic.

It is great to hear that you like to enrich this community with great contributions. This, of course, requires a lot of time and editing while writing a new topic or post. We would like to thank you for your dedication so far. You are one of the top writers and publishers here actually. Good job!

I would like to add that I feel that forums generally come with the right tools for this kind of work. The draft feature is great to finalize a posting or thread without having any notes or leftovers of edits. Once published there is not a single sign of edits or similar. The edit function also has its purpose. It is usually used to add additional content after something has been published and already received replies. You wouldn't delete a whole thread to add something new to the OP, would you?

So as far as I understood you: I think the draft tool is exactly what you are looking for. It is the perfect sandbox to finalize your thread/post before publishing it.

I can understand your frustration regarding the bugs of the forum. That said... Here I am more sad than happy that at least members of staff understand my concerns regarding the state of MyBB and the inflexible plugin system/update system. @SLC can tell a story as he was helping me with a few things regarding MyBB.

So I would like to ask everybody for a bit more understanding. This forum has been through a lot on the software side in its almost eight years of existence. It started off with MyBB 1.2.x, was upgraded to 1.4.x and later to 1.6.x. Now it's running 1.8.x. All the upgrades and various different versions have changed too much in the core and other infrastructure. This forum is nowhere near like a native 1.8.x installed MyBB forum would be.

All of this contributes to bugs and issues with plugins and themes. We try to fix everything but sometimes it's not so easily done. The MyBB support is also not that great. Often my topics were left to die or after a long time, I managed to find the solution by myself without any kind of help from them. And on the other hand, not everyone has all the knowledge and experience on earth to deal with a setup like ours.

The way it is an upgrade to 2.0.x might not be even possible or will only work when the forum is stripped of all its plugins, extra code and themes. MyBB 2.0 changes everything again! A new PHP framework here, a different theme engine there and massive changes in the plugin system (partially due to the new PHP framework and forum core). Sure they are meant to make everything better but how does upgrading of the old code look? Anyway. So much about the technical issues.

Now to your last point regarding disabling the deletion of own topics or posts. We have thought about doing this but it has been a requested feature by the community that should be enabled some years ago and it also takes of some moderation load even if it could bring up side effects like this one in relation to "possible" bugs.

It's not an issue if you delete one or a few posts or topics because you realized that your question might have been answered already or similar. That was the idea behind it when the community asked for deletion of own threads/posts to be enabled. Take off the load from staff and enable some kind of self-moderation to maintain quality. It just shouldn't be overused or used to exploit something. That said if @HMR is right the issue with Newpoints not properly deleting soft-delete points might be solved.


FreeVPS Directory & Discussion currently uses version 2.1.1 of the MyBB Newpoints plugin. It has been recently updated after a few bugs related to very old leftover plugin files have been fixed. The old files didn't allow a proper update of the plugin and some administrative functions haven't been working properly. This discovery, however, didn't interrupt the actual functions of the Newpoints plugin. Only a few administrative functions of Newpoints were affected.

That is what we believe in with the best of faith after observing the issue caused by old files and how everything started working properly after getting rid of the old files and performing the upgrade to 2.1.1.

Thank you for your concern. If the update really brings what it promises we shall see the effects soon. Please note though that we have not yet had time or chances to observe how the points plugin reacts to soft deletes since the upgrade.

We hope the best and that it really works.


As I mentioned to @deanhills it has been a feature that was requested by the community. So we'd like to keep it.

We understand that members might not have been aware. So we decided to post this rule change announcement to spread awareness. It is no abuse if you accidentally posted something and delete it. The difference is the number of times it happens and the amount of content that is deleted.

If we had anything against you and other members doing some self-moderation to fix up mistakes and accidents we wouldn't have agreed on enabling the feature. So don't worry that because you just deleted one or a few posts/topics we might warn you or anyone else.

We usually always observe a situation over a time period before taking action to filter out normal behaviour and possible abuse.

My final words with the hope that my reply could clear up some doubts and anger.

I would like to ask everybody to calm down a little. Anger is no solution and not good for your healthiness. We're not attempting to attack anyone personally or irritate any of you.

The incidents mentioned and described in this announcement also are dating back to much earlier times starting at around the end of the year 2017. Not just only the recent times as mentioned by @supertanno in the OP. The staff has been observing this for a few months already and just decided to post this announcement to make an unwritten common sense rule into a written rule.

And even before this, maybe a year or even a few years ago, there have always been other ways to exploit the points system. At some point, a level is reached where you simply have to write down the obvious. This announcement should be simply bringing awareness about the issue and a public note regarding rule updates for your own convenience. Remember the staff is not obliged to (pre)-announce changes to rules.

That's just it. Not more and not less. No one has received a warning/infraction so far. And never have we even thought about deducting the points of users as a kind of punishment or something.
Actually I just did a simple test a few minutes ago and found out that (soft-)deleting a post/thread does in fact remove points/score from that post/thread. So users who try to exploit the point system by creating then deleting their post/thread would just be wasting their time.

@Monad Thanks for the great work you've done on this forum. Regarding MyBB 2.0, that's to be expected since in software a change in major version number indicates changes that are not backwards compatible.

Thank you very much for the positive feedback regarding the installed update for Newpoints. Great to hear that it is now working as supposed and someone has actually been able to monitor it.
@Monad  You can't imagine how wonderful it was to receive your response here. For me it has made all of the difference.  Thank you very much for your detailed response.  I now know I have to use the edit tool, but at the time when I was using the "delete" tool there was absolutely no indication that there would be a problem using it.  I didn't even know that it was a soft delete tool only.  Like I had no reason at all to expect that what I had deleted had not been permanently deleted - points and all.  Now that I know that it is not the case and "punishable by law", it's logical that I'd be very resistant to using the delete tool in future.  

In retrospect, after taking a break from FreeVPS and looking at my response and this announcement more objectively with fresh eyes, it wasn't only the content of the Announcement but the tone of the Announcement that got to me.  The "punishments" word in the title line was most unfortunate.  Like it obviously was a serious matter, but the wording in that announcement could have been done much more diplomatically. It lacked in empathy with innocent law-abiding members who had no idea about the flaw in the delete tool and who had inadvertently got lumped in with law breakers. 

Back to the topic - I note what you are saying about not being able to disable the delete function, however would it be possible to add a popup warning when someone clicks on the delete tool?  Like, let's pretend we're a few months down the line.  This new rule is not a universal rule.  Like I haven't found it at any of the other many Forums I'm posting at.  So let's say there are new quality non-spam members posting here quite happily and enthusiastically, who don't really know about this rule.  They then discover the delete tool, and start using it, and then of course get to inadvertently break the rule, because they're not really in the know.  Do you think it could be feasible to add a popup warning when anyone clicks on the "delete post" tool, that warns them to use it with care only - and to inform the staff of the reason why they need to use it?  Like if staff have the time to code the popup they could add a little form where one can put in the reason why one wants to delete it.  That way there would be no excuse whatsoever of not knowing about the rule.

That's a great suggestion! We'll be sure to look into it, but since we're all pretty short on time it could get tricky to get it programmed in. We'll definitely put it on our list though!

That being said, first time infraction is practically always a slap on the wrist, except for big things like multiple accounts which we take very seriously. Of course, with the new update to newpoints the biggest problem with soft-deleting is gone (though we're keeping it as a rule to keep the place organized).
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