Functions: If a user misbehaves

Unfortunately, sometimes, users write things they better shouldn’t have written. Besides locking the topic to prevent further escalation of unfriendliness, admins and moderators have a few more tools. Some of those are hidden in tiny icons at the bottom of each post. Here is what they do:

1.) Report post
This function is available to every user. If a user reports a post, a reason must be given. The post is then automatically brought to the attention of all admins and moderators.

2.) Post information
This button leads to a screen with all administrative information about the post, such as date and time.
Additionally, the IP address from which the post was written, is shown and there is a possibility to look up the IP address from the international registries’ databases. Those databases usually contain a so-called “abuse address”, which is a point of contact where complaints against the user of an IP address can be directed. E.g. a short phone call to the abuse line of the IT department of a big company, complaining about an employee spamming or trolling the forums often works wonders :wink:.
In case of criminal violations, e.g. criminal slander, the police or a court might also ask for this IP address.

3.) Warn user
"Warnings" are a powerful tool. They work much like traffic citations. The user receives an official warning and for that warning also receives “points”. Those points are stored permanently in the user’s information in the phpBB database and allow admins / moderators to easily identify repeat offenders which ultimatively might lead to a temporary or permanent ban from the forums.

4.) Delete this post
Quickly and painlessly deletes that specific post and only that post. Use with caution! Deleting a post which has follow-ups might disrupt the context of following posts. It’s usually better to edit a post which only partially contains offensive writing or tell the user to do so. But if there are no follow-ups yet, delete away!