Support Center

Admin Panel - Manage > Member Levels

Member Levels can be used to give certain members more privileges than others. You can grant/restrict a Member Level's access to features and sections of the community. You can also assign levels that have moderation or administrative capabilities. Additionally, using the Subscriptions feature, you can charge your members to be a part of a more feature-filled Member Level. The following video will give you a quick overview of what is possible with member levels:

You can reach the Member Level area in your Admin panel by navigating to Manage > Member Levels.

By default, SocialEngine comes pre-loaded with five different Member Levels: Super Admins, Admins, Moderators, Default Level, and Public.

Super Admins - this Member Level represents the Member Level with the highest privileges. This is what your admin account will be, by default. The Super Admin level cannot be deleted.

Admins - members in the Admin Member Level will have access to the admin panel.

Moderators - members in the Moderator Member Level can be granted certain moderation privileges.

Default Level - this is the level that members will be automatically assigned after registering if they have not been already assigned or moved to a different level by an administrator.

Public - this Member Level also cannot be deleted. It represents unregistered members - guests who browse your network without being logged in.

You can change a member's Member Level from the Manage Members page. By clicking on either the “ID” or the “Level Name”, you will be able to sort the list either by “ID” or “Level Name” respectively.

Creating a New Member Level

  1. To add a new Member Level, click the "Add Member Level" link.
  2. A form will open where you can give your Member Level a “Member Level Name” and “Description”.
  3. Choose a “Type” for the new Member Level: “Admin”, “Moderator”, or “Normal”. Note that the Type cannot be changed once you create the level. Any "Normal" Member Level you create can be set as the default Member Level - meaning the level your members will be sorted into by default when they sign up.
  4. Finally, choose a Member Level to copy setting values from. The Member Level you select must be of the same type as the Member Level you are creating.
  5. Click the "Create Level" button to save your new Member Level.

Mapping Member Levels to Profile Types

To map your Member Levels to Profile Types you’ve created, click the “Profile Types and Level Mapping” tab.

On this page, you’ll see the maps you’ve already created. You can edit or delete these maps by clicking either the “Edit” or “Delete” links to the right of each map. You can also select multiple maps to delete by checking the left checkbox and selecting to “Delete Selected.”

Creating a Map

  1. Click “Create a Mapping.”
  2. Enter a “Title” and “Description” in the input fields. Select the “Profile Type” and “Member Level” to map. Click “Save” to save this mapping.
  3. The next screen asks whether you want to update the members that are in this Profile Type to the Member Level being mapped. Choose “Yes” or “No.” If you choose “Yes,” current members will change to the new Profile Type once they log in and update their profile info.

Editing a Member Level

Clicking the "Edit" link next to a Member Level in the list will take you to that level's settings.

Member Level

If you would like to edit a Member Level other than the one that is currently displayed in the select box, you can click on the arrow to the right of the Member Level name and select a Member Level to edit.


The name of the Member Level


The description of the Member Level which will only be displayed on this page.

Allow Profile Moderation

This feature allows members of this level to able to edit other members' profiles and settings if they find offensive content or need to change a user's settings.

Allow Profile Styles

Allowing custom profile styles will allow members to add in CSS by going to My Profile > Edit My Profile > Profile Style to change the way their profile looks without affecting the rest of the site. This feature has three different access levels. You can allow the members of this level to edit other members' profile styles in case there is something offensive or an invalid CSS rule by selecting "Yes, allow members in this level to edit other profiles and setting". By selecting the "Yes, allow custom profile styles" option, you will allow members of this level to style their own profiles; however, they will not be able to edit other members' profile styles. Selecting "No, do not allow custom profile styles.", will not allow the members of this level to style their profile.

Allow Account Deletion

Allowing account deletion allows members to be able to delete their own account when they want to from the Settings page > Delete Account page. Selecting the "Yes, allow members of this level to delete other users." Will allow members of this level to be able to delete their own account as well as able to see a "delete" link next to members' names in on the “Manage Members” page. Selecting "Yes, allow members to delete their account" will allow members of this level to delete their own accounts; however, they will not be able to see any delete links on the “Manage Members” page. Selecting the "No, do not allow account deletion." option will not show a "Delete Account" option on the members of this level's own Settings page.

Allow Activity Feed Moderation

Members will normally have the option to delete their own activity feed updates with a link that appears on their own posts. However, selecting "Yes, allow members in this level to delete other users." will allow members of this level to see a delete link for every post on the activity feed and therefore be able to delete any post. Selecting the "No, do not allow moderation" will allow members of this level to see a delete link on their own posts but not on any other members' post.

Allow Blocking

Members have the option of blocking other members from being able to send them private messages, requesting their friendship, or viewing their profile. Selecting the "Yes" option will allow members of this level to block any user from doing the previously mentioned actions. Selecting "No" will not allow the user to block anyone and therefore will be open for communication from anyone.

NOTE: blocking a member will only block them from being able to see your profile feed and not your main activity feed. If your site is set to show everybody's activity feeds, then the blocked user will still be able to see the activity feed on the main page of the person who blocked them.

Profile Viewing Options

The “Profiles Viewing Options” feature allows you to select which options to give to your members in terms of who can view their profile. If you select more than one option, then the selected options will appear in the member's Settings > Privacy page. If you do not select any options, then the member will not have a "Profile Privacy" section on their Privacy page and will not be able to make any selections. The privacy setting will be whatever was last selected before disabling any options. If you would like Everyone (even member's not logged in) or All Registered Members to be able to see everyone's profile, you will need to select one of these options and only one. Selecting more than one will once again allow the member to select between the two options.

Profile Commenting Options

The “Profile Commenting Options” are much like the previous “Profile Viewing Options”, however, they apply to which members are allowed to comment on the members of this level's posts.

Search Privacy Options

Members have the option to exclude themselves from search results and lists of members on the homepage. Selecting the "Yes" option will allow the members of this level to choose if they want to be excluded from being searched on the “Browse Members” page or for people to know when they are online from the "Members Online" widget. Selecting the "No", option will force all members of this level to be on the “Browse Members” page as well as all the Homepage widgets.

Allow status messages

You are able to control whether certain members are allowed to post updates on the activity feed or not. Selecting the "Yes" option, would allow members of this level to post updates on the activity feed. Selecting "No", would remove the members of this level's ability to post in the activity for both the main feed and their own profile feed.

Maximum Allowed time for editing status posts?

This allows you to enter the maximum allowed time (in minutes) for which members will be able to edit their status posts via activity feed.

Allow username changes

You are also able to control whether members are allowed to change their usernames they signed up with or whether they will need keep the same username they signed up with. Selecting "Yes" would allow members to change their username at any time by going their “Settings” page and changing their “Profile Address”. Selecting the "No" option would force members of this level to keep the same username they registered with.

Storage Quota

If you have any plugins such as the Photo Albums, Music, or Videos plugins installed, you can limit how much server space a member has available to upload by selecting a limit from the drop down menu. This limit will not apply to any embedded media such as videos from YouTube or Vimeo.


Allow HTML in Comments?

By default, the ability to add any HTML in comments is disabled. If you would like to allow a member to use HTML in their comments, you will need to list the tags you would like to allow in the field below. An example would be: a, b, img, font, etc. Use caution with this setting as HTML can be used for nefarious purposes. If you choose to allow this, it would be best to restrict it to trusted Member Levels.

NOTE: there is still a pre-programmed list in the source code that limits the allowed HTML tags in an entry. If you would like to see the list of forbidden tags are, please refer to the /application/libraries/Engine/Filter/Html.php file. These tags were forbidden to prevent the corruption of the site's styling, however, if you would like to take any of the tags off the list, you are more than welcomed to at your own risk.

Allow Messaging

Members are allowed to use the messaging system to send each other notes; however, you can limit which Member Levels are allowed to message each other. Selecting the "Everyone" option would allow any member to message any other member by clicking on the "Send Message" link in the person's profile. Selecting "Friends Only" will only allow members to message members who are their friends. Any member who is not a friend will not have a "Send Message" link in their profile. Selecting "Disable messaging" disables all messaging for the members of this level. It will remove the "Messages" link from the mini navigation menu for these members.

Use editor for messaging?

You can choose to use an editor to help format and add media to your messages or use the default plain text box with buttons to add media and share when allowed.

Allow Cover Photo Uploads?

Choose whether to allow members in this level to upload cover photos.

Default User Cover Photo

This setting allows you to set a global user cover photo that will show until the user uploads their own cover photo. Once you click “Click here” you will be brought to your profile to load the default cover photo. See this tutorial for tips for setting up the cover photo widget.


When finished making changes, click on the “Save Changes” button, seen in the image above, to save the changes you have made.

Selecting Default Level

To make a Member Level the default level that newly registered members are automatically assigned to, click the radio button in that Member Level's row under the "Default Level" column. Note that only "Normal" type Member Levels can be set as the default.

Deleting a Single Member Level

To delete a Member Level, click the "Delete" link next to the Member Level. You will be prompted to confirm the deletion - click "Delete Level" to continue. All of the members who are currently a part of that Member Level will be re-assigned to the default Member Level. Note that the default, “Super Admins”, and “Public” Member Levels cannot be deleted. You must assign a different Member Level to be the default before that level can be deleted.

Deleting Multiple Member Levels

To delete multiple Member Levels at one time, check the boxes next to the Member Levels that you would like to delete and then click the "Delete Selected" button.

Member Level Settings

When you go to the “Member Level Settings” page, the first thing you will need to do is select the level you want to edit in the drop-down at the top of the page. Different Member Levels may have different options available to them. For example, the “Public” Member Level has almost no options, whereas, the “Admin” Member Level has options regarding moderation. Most of the options on this page are self-explanatory.

Plugin Member Level Settings

Many SocialEngine plugins have settings that can be restricted by Member Level. To access the plugin Member Level settings, select the plugin you want to modify from the “Plugins” menu in your admin panel. We’ll use the Forums plugin in our examples below:

Most plugins contain a tab titled "Member Level Settings" that will allow you to edit the plugin settings for each Member Level.

These settings include privacy for plugin content and options for who can view or create items within a specific plugin. For more information about individual plugin settings, refer to the Plugins Menu (2.5) section of the documentation.

Great work with Member Levels! Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or need further tutorials. Visit our community to have more interactions with us and other clients or third party developers. We’d love to see you there!
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