Upload limits are used, along with the moderation system, to prevent uploaders from flooding the site with too many low-quality images. You can see your current upload limit on your profile page or on the upload page.
Your upload limit controls how many status:pending or status:appealed posts you can have in the moderation queue at once. For example, if you have an upload limit of 15, then you can have 15 status:pending posts at once. When you reach your limit, you can't upload more until your existing uploads are either approved or deleted.
New uploaders should be careful about uploading too many posts at once. If you run out of upload slots, you may have to wait up to 3 days for your posts to be deleted before you can upload again.
Here's how the system works:
- Each status:pending post takes up one upload slot.
- Each status:appealed post takes up three upload slots.
- If any of your uploads are manually deleted in under three days (status:deleted age:<3d), they take up five upload slots.
- Slots are freed when uploads are approved, or after three days if they are not approved.
- You start out with 15 upload slots and can have between 5 and 40 upload slots.
- You gain and lose slots based on approvals and deletions:
- You lose a slot for every 3 deletions.
- You gain a slot for every N approved uploads, where N depends on how many slots you already have:
- If you have 15 slots or less, then you gain a slot for every 10 approved uploads.
- If you have more than 15 slots, then you need 10 approvals, plus 2 more per upload slot over 15.
For example, if you have 15 upload slots, then you need 10 approvals for the next slot. If you have 16 slots, then you need 12 approvals. If you have 17 slots, you need 14 approvals, and so on. The number of approvals you need goes up by 2 every level.
At the maximum level you can have 40 upload slots. To reach this level you will need at least 900 approved uploads and an average deletion ratio of less than 5%.
Contributor-level users and above (help:users) have no upload limit. You may be granted this privilege by consistently uploading high-quality posts while maintaining a low deletion ratio. The general criteria for Contributor level is having 1000 uploads and having a recent deletion ratio of around 5% or lower, though users with very few deleted posts might be promoted at lower thresholds.