Yes, Talk-Polywell is broken. Dreamhost broke it on September 21, when they upgraded the server to PHP 5.6.
I've spent the last two weeks going back and forth with their tech support staff, mucking with config files, upgrading phpBB, restoring from backups, mucking with config files again, and generally getting nowhere.
They seem to have quit responding, and I've given up on getting any competent help from them.
I do have a complete copy of the talk-polywell DB on my hard drive, so the data should be safe. My plan at this point is to install MyBB (which is marginally better than phpBB anyway; see here for an example), and upload the data into it. In theory, all our user accounts and messages should be intact.
But I am no PHP expert, and it may or may not go smoothly. Please be patient. I will get talk-polywell up and running again.
Oct 03, 2015