What are the tags on certain people's profiles (Member, Charter Member, etc.), and what is the criteria for getting these (if there is any)?

I see on a ton of people’s profiles here they have “Member” or something like that next to their name. Are there certain criteria you have to meet in order to get these? What about custom tags? How do you get those? Help would be appreciated on this.

Member means you have to pay a subscription–unlike those of us who are Guest who don’t. Charter member means you became a member in the early days of the Straight Dope Message Board.

Custom titles, like paid memberships, are (or at least, were) something that one could get by paying money towards the board’s operating expenses.

When we made the transition to the Discourse boards, I believe that the plan was to re-institute things like subscriptions and custom titles, but my recollection is that that system wasn’t yet set up before TubaDiva passed away, just after the transition. I’m not sure if there’s yet a timeline for when those will be available again.

In the dim distant past it looked like the boards would go under altogether and funds were needed. An offer was made for people to pay an amount that would entitled them to use the term Charter Member and which would entitle them to discounted membership fees forevermore as long as we kept our subscriptions up.

I haven’t been posting in recent years but have started again a little. I keep my subscription going though so that I can lord it over you mere mortals! Mwahaha!

The subscription system is definitely on the list of things that needs to be fixed around here. At the moderation level, no one has given us any kind of timeline for when it will be addressed. All that I can tell you at this point is that the folks in charge are aware of the issue.

I don’t know if custom titles will be included in whatever system we end up using.

Thank you for the update!

Are there a lot of things that need fixing on the list? I’m pretty happy with everything, although I know others are having problems adjusting and we seem to have lost quite a few posters with the changeover. It’s kind of sad how many posters have a last posting date of June 2020.

IIRC the Charter Member status was for anyone who joined before a specific date (which I can’t remember) who also never let their paid subscription lapse.

I let mine lapse so I never got to be a Charter Member in the old fashioned way, however the title was bestowed upon me for my brief service as a moderator.

Is there any info on whether or when they might appoint an (or more) more active admins?

That’s another point that is definitely on the to-do list of the Powers that Be. Beyond that, we don’t know.

Well, at least it’s on the list! Thanks, Chronos.

If memory serves, that date was April 30, 2004. That was when the board went to paid memberships–if you had joined before then, you’d be a Charter Member, as long as you paid the subscription fee before that date. People who joined after that date and paid the fee, were Members.

Today’s Charter Members are those who have kept their paid memberships up since then. How many of us Charter Members are there still?

When I click on the “Charter Member” title by your name, it shows ten avatars, and “+371 more.” So, 381 of you, at least according to Discourse.

Thanks, kenobi_65! Never thought of doing that, but now I do, and you answered the question as well. Again, thanks!

This is going to be one long tontine. But all worth it for the ACCESS DENIED at the end.

It seems like some posters have figured out a way to customize their tags.

Discourse has what it calls “trust levels” where basically members who have been around longer and have done things that make them more “trusted” have permissions to do things that regular members can’t do. We don’t use trust levels and had attempted to pretty much disable them, but our initial settings for that were not correct and some people ended up being promoted to higher trust levels where they could edit titles and could do a few other things that we intended to be done only by moderators.

We have since fixed the trust level settings.

Yes, I remember that. I was one of the chosen few, for a short time. It seems to me that a couple of crafty IT posters continued after the change. But, I may have the timeline wrong.