What are Trust Levels and what do they do? Why can’t I send Private Messages? Why is my ability to do [feature X] limited/disabled?
There are 5 trust levels for the forums. Everyone starts at level 0, and the levels go up to Level 4. Each higher level grants more privileges associated with an increasing level of trust and familiarity with the forum. More information on the technical details of Trust Levels and the reasoning behind them can be found on the Discourse Forums.
Level 0 - New: This is the initial level for all members. Being the most restrictive of all trust levels, it still allows members to create, read and reply to topics, but restricts the maximum number of links and mentions per post to 2. Members at this trust level cannot post images or attachment, and cannot send private messages to other users.
Level 1 - Basic: This trust level removes the restrictions from Trust Level 0, and enables members to send private messages. To reach this level you must: enter 5 topics, read 25 posts and spend 5 minutes reading.
Level 2 - Regular: To reach this level, you must enter 20 topics, read 100 posts, read for 60 minutes, visit 15 days, receive and give 1 like and reply to 3 Topics. This level gets to use the ‘invite others to topic’ button and make group PMs (private topics).
Level 3 - Leader: Level 3 is the first level that is time sensitive. In the past 100 days, you must have visited 50 days, start 5 topics that generate replies, reply to 10 Topics, and have less than 5 flagged posts. They can recategorize and rename topics, and have their own personal lounge.
Level 4 - Elder: is Invite Only. They have the same permissions as the moderators. They can edit any post, pin or unpin topics, close, archive, split or merge topics.