Mod note: Err, moved to the Feedback thread instead from here.
Custom titles are granted automatically when someone has made more than 1000 posts. And while I personally think it's a poor criteria to use, since quantity says nothing about quality, that's how it's been decided to be.
Ranks, if you mean moderator etc, is just a position/function -- given to some volunteering community members who's proven to be active, contributing and trustworthy -- to help take care of the forum and keep it free from spam, advertising and other disruptive things that tend to plague any forum that isn't actively maintained, and help out, if possible when conflicts arise between members. While there may be many around would would be suitable for such volunteer work, if they wanted to, you can't have too many doing it at once or chaos will ensue.
A moderator's word only counts for more than other members' in matters pertaining to forum moderation.
If you mean the new badges, they were added as a positive recognition system for those who have done something out of the ordinary (won contests, contributed substantially etc). Many people find it nice to get a pat on the shoulder if you've done something special, and this was meant as a virtual equivalent of that sort of thing. This feature is still new so guidelines for how it should be used, what badges should be there etc are still being decided upon. As such there is a certain amount of arbitrary judgment involved in those given out thus far, but that's essentially unavoidable unless you have rigid rules in place. There are threads in the LF Feedback forum if you want to give your input or suggestions, or nominate someone for a badge.
At this stage not everyone who's earned a certain badge have received it. As said, the feature is new, and the badges have to be given out manually by moderators. Lucasforums have many members, moderators have other things to do with their time as well, and would naturally give out badges to those they think of first. Is there favoritism involved in those decisions? Perhaps, in the sense that people they socialize with or have other regular dealings with would tend to first come to mind when these things are given out. You can help speed this process up though by using the nominations thread in the Feedback forum to point out who should get what.
Regarding cliques, do they exist? Most likely; people tend to make friends with others they find pleasant, entertaining, interesting or have something in common with. And people generally tend to joke around and socialize more closely with their friends than with others. I can't really see that anything could be done about that. It would be absurd to have a "You can either be friends with everyone or no one!
" rule on a forum.
You can never please everyone. People have very different mentalities, sense of humor and past experiences that color how they perceive things. If you could never post a joke unless you were 100% sure that everyone would find it fun you could never post anything at all.
Joking at someone elses' expense is another matter. If that is the case here please point out how and why, because I can't even figure out what this thread was meant to be about, as it is. Language barrier I suspect.
Somehow I don't see you being silenced, given that you are posting your opinions on this thread for everyone to read. To disagree with what someone is stating is not to silence them. If you are dragging a thread off-topic however (can't say if this is the case here since I have no idea what the topic is
) a moderator would be within their rights to either split the conversation to a separate thread, or remove it.
As for being unlikable I'm hard pressed to understand why anyone would intentionally want to be that (unless I'm misunderstanding what you wrote). If you're actively trying to piss people off then perhaps it's not so strange if they react accordingly. This is a hobby forum people (presumably) visit for entertainment during their spare time. No one here is obligated to deal with every other member, and if someone is ruining their fun here or being generally unpleasant it's usually best to just ignore them.