Suicides through physics abuse, mainly by drowning or cliff jumping, are huge. You have admitted that you want to rely on community input.
Automate the frikking thing then, and should someone who drowns receives a decent % of complaints from the enemy team, does get punished.
Again from your own website:
OK, but what do I accomplish?
Keep in mind, that, although there is no ban hammer coming down from the skies to wipe the player from the battlefield, your report will have a large impact.
By sending a complaint via the interface, the player you reported acquires “negative points”, which add up in a short time if they keep breaking the rules and misbehaving on the battlefield. This is a very effective way of marking players who constantly break the rules while giving a chance to those who might just be having a bad day.
You have to make it hurt a bit.
Increasingly longer ban? Progressively moving up from 15min -> Hours – > Days etc
Big increase in Repair bill? > honestly, super easy, especially in the case of drowning. Routine is in place to report team-abuse of this, and it is far too rare by comparison.
Hall of Shame? > Tribunal as u/Tablomaxos suggested and is present in other games. The "negative points" over the last 15 days or so should be visible in your service record. And if anything, I would re-install XVM if I could see nothing but that in-game: let me suggest a name for it: a-hol-8.
Flag blue as you had with TKillers, make it so that there is no mission progress/rewards for the duration of being flagged as such.
At a minimum, the alledged offender should receive notice by an in-game popup at the end of the battle: Your X battle in Y timestamp was flagged for Physics Abuse / Unsportsmanlike conduct / etc by Z # of players. Make it clear that this behavior is tracked, and it should be a deterrent to some vs. it being transparently clear that noone cares – i.e. the current state.
All of the above should be appealable BUT, leave some frikking burden on the alleged abuser too, not just his/her victims.
I mean, if there is no punishment, wtf do we care about a "negative point system" ?
There are few cases of clear-cut physics abuse: Being drowned w/o any enemies around at the end of a battle cannot be more clear-cut. TK-ing by large guns was also big, but you removed that with 1.6.
It is about time to give the in-game reporting system some teeth. Make it requiring 30~50% of the enemy team coordinating to report (tall order), but once we do meet that requirement (so it is not just a toon of assholes giving some unlucky guy hard time), the system should be able to automatically connect the dots (reports + drowning or crushing death) and flag the player for punishment. Requiring me to stop my session, sacrifice 10 or more min of my booster and/or my limited time playing just to report a clear-cut game abuse case, should not be up to me.
Also, make it be the case that should a "drowning" vehicle receives ANY shot, penning or not before the tank gets drowned, the enemy that took that last shoot gets 100% of the HP and the kill credited to him. Remove any incentive for being "that kind of player" who denies its enemies what would be inevitable if it wasn't for abusing the mechanics.
The system is cumbersome, and this is why it is abused. Streamline it. Yes, you might lose some trolling a-hole players, but you will make the vast majority happier if you implement it correctly.