These things have been on my mind as “would be nice,” I delayed posting them due to not having time to run searches on whether they have been discussed, probably best to just post and see if anything is useful:
1: Cloning posts to Staff
The ability to copy/clone posts from public topics and PMs into Staff without triggering notifications to the member/s taking part and without removing the posts from their present locations would be a time-saver.
Example 1: I PM a member about suspected abuse, for example duplicate accounts due to them having a shared residential IP address.
The member replies in a way that makes me believe they may have been attempting to create duplicate accounts, but it’s inconclusive, so I want a record of this in Staff in case of future problems arising with that member, and I want the posts cloned because immediate visibility beats copying in a link, and then having to follow it back out later.
Example 2: a topic goes awry and I delete it, make some posts a PM, or make it Unlisted, and I wish to record the nature of the problem to demonstrate why the person was banned (we have an appeals process, and I don’t want my admins to have to go hunting for reasons), or to aid with pattern-recognition if this person comes back.
Sometimes, copying in responses of other members is necessary to give context to the problematic replies, but those posts may need to stay (perhaps with sections of response edited out) if they used the same post to reply helpfully on-topic as well, and people will sometimes do this, a rebuke to someone being foolish and then a proper reply in one.
Cloning means I can butcher the original topic as needed (and topics where drama is occuring can bloat very quickly, drawing a lot of attention), splitting bits into new public topics or PMs, or unlisted sections if there’s a side-conversation that’s off-topic to the forum but not doing any harm, without needing to worry about leaving accessible links for future reference.
At the moment I have to manually copy-paste the subject of the PM/topic and then use Quote to copy in all relevant posts, including by other members, which is very time-consuming, or fiddle about with screencaps.
If I could access “Clone to new topic/existing topic” from the wrench > Select posts menu, that would simplify things immensely, I could create the new topic in Staff (“Banned MemberX”) and state anything needed, then clone all the posts needed below very easily and without lengthy copy-paste, and it would also be simpler to select an entire PM conversation and clone it to the Staff topic.
Cloning would also be extremely useful if a member has flagged a PM received, where Staff resolving a flag mean that PM is no longer accessible, but where the problem needs to be logged.
2: Marker on a profile
It would be a big help to have some kind of marker that is visible only to Staff that sits either on the person’s avatar at all times, or is visible when viewing their card, that shows there is a topic about them in Staff/that there has been some kind of issue.
Not everything a person does, that is a problem, will be visible as Suspensions, Flags, or Warnings, and when viewing a topic that is becoming overheated or contentious, it would be helpful to have visible alerts for people who have been involved in problems before without needing to check each person’s Summary, and like other forums, it seems, the forum I moderate has many extremely similar usernames based on the forum’s subject matter, so I cannot keep track using memory alone.
3: Some record of all Unlisted topics
Recently I had to try and find a major topic that was unlisted last year after it crashed into arguments and accusations. I fortunately recalled a member in it had posted an unusual thing in an early post and had not posted much since, so I found him via the term I recalled and then used his Activity to find the topic. This felt a bit precarious.
Ideal would be something accessible from the dashboard, a workaround would be to log all topics made unlisted in Staff and I may begin doing this, but this is subject to forgetfulness and also creates work.
4: Sort member Activity by oldest first
Sometimes it’s very helpful to read someone’s earliest posts to compare against things they are now saying, to detect or rule out various kinds of bad behaviour. At the moment this can only be done in Search, but it won’t return all early posts unless I can recall a term or the topic titles to search for.