Well let's see. What will my new policy be... I have turned off the ability to upload avatars or link to external avatars for most users (I think), but that might change as I explore the abilities of the forums more. If nobody objects or has a better suggestion, I may just leave it as is.
As for the ranking, there are still "Expert" and "Contributor" rankings, but now you will also be able to distinguish these rankings by the colored stars that appear with the name instead of with the light bulb. A contributor will have 2 green stars and an expert will have 5 green stars. A contributor still represents someone who has contributed significant material to the community and an expert still represents someone with a thorough understanding of SGDK. I may add more rankings later if I find a need to do so. Experts are allowed to set their own title text (I think). Not sure what that looks like. Now, however, there is an additional ranking based on post count. I estimated some numbers in order to group posters into 3 groups: Visitor, Regular and Fanatic. So you can have multiple ranks (a contributor and a fanatic, for example). I'm not even sure if I should do this because it might just serve to invite lots of meaningless posts from people who want to be listed as fanatics, but hopefully it will just be a fun little title to draw a little more interest to this forum system, and to appreciate those who have lots of insight to offer. There appears to be a karma feature on this forum system, but I have not turned it on because I figure that's primarily useful for systems where there are so many messages you need help sorting out what's worth reading, and I don't think there's much trouble with that on these forums yet.
If anyone has any problems or suggestions about the features available under the new forum system, let me know and I will consider them. Hopefully you have at least as much freedom as you did before. Just keep in mind that, in the end, these forums are about promoting and communicating information related to SGDK, and sharing experiences and assistance with the SGDK community. They're not so much about rankings and popularity (the rankings are meant as a clue to people on who to trust/ask and maybe as a little pat on the back for those who help and contribute)... so far so good. I'm glad this community has acted quite civilized in general to this point.