Please note: Credits are no longer used on PF. This post is outdated and about the old system:
This is for all the newbies out there who seem to become obsessed with their credits. This is the one stop shop for all you need to know about the little buggers.
Right. First of all, credits are the numbers that appear under your flags. They are basically points.
How do you earn points? Easy, by posting. Each forum will give you a certain number of credits. For example, this forum (Forum Help, Feedback) might give you 10 credits each time you make a post. Another forum, such as the Current Events forum, might give you 15 credits for each post.
When you have a post deleted, you lose the credits you earned from that post.
If a user has a negative number of credits - for example '-10' - that could mean that the user has donated his/her credits to someone, then had a number of posts deleted, which would land their points in the negative.
Now, a lot of people like to know what, exactly, can you do with these credits? Well, not much, to be honest.
You could use them to play the quizzes like a few people do. These are basically political quizzes, with a few other, random quizzes thrown in.
In order to play, you'll need a certain number of credits - probably under 100 - as each quiz requires credits to play. If you win a quiz, you gain back those credits, plus more.
You can play each quiz only once - which was a pain for me because I really wanted to cheat!
You can also donate your credits to another user. You can do this by finding the user you wish to donate to. Find one of their posts, then click the 'credit' tag under their name. It will take you to a page in which you can type in the number you wish to donate. When you make a donation, you will lose about 5% of the credits you have donated. So if you decide to donate 100 credits, you will automatically have 5% of that 100 deducted - so the user won't end up getting the entire 100 credits.
If all that seems a bit too confusing, send me a PM. I am happy to brand myself as the credit expert of this forum, and I would be happy to help you out with any questions you might have.
In the meantime, enjoy the forums!