A question about socks

As I understand it, most socks are banned posters trying to come back, as opposed to active posters setting up a second account. I have questions:

Is there a handful of banned posters who keep trying to come back as socks and keep getting banned, or are there a lot of banned posters who try once to come back as socks and then go away forever?

If an active poster is found to be using a sock, I assume both accounts are banned?

Why is there a reluctance to discuss socking in general, or get into the specific of banned socks?

ETA: How are most socks discovered?

Most socks are banned posters trying to come back. It’s fairly rare that we have an active user create a sock, though it does happen on occasion.

We also have quite a few members who for one reason or another had an issue with the transition to Discourse software. Some may have had an incorrect email on their account. Others may not have followed the password reset procedure properly. Some likely had other issues like their internet provider blocking the password reset emails. We don’t want to punish folks who create socks just because of account issues.

Many banned users just go away and don’t come back. Some make a few attempts at socking and then give up. We have a small number of serial sockers. And we have a few that have managed to evade detection, though most end up engaging in the same sort of behavior that got them banned in the first place and just end up getting banned again.

If someone creates a sock because of an account issue, we try to sort out the account issue so that they can keep their posting history and all that. If someone creates a sock just for socking purposes, then both accounts are perma-banned.

Exactly how we detect socks is moderator-only information. We don’t discuss that in public.

Thanks. With the new software, we see who was banned for socking, which I think we didn’t used to know.

A question about what @madmonk28 just said: if a poster is a banned sock of another poster, do you label both accounts as banned for socking, or just the actual sock account?


Occasionally Dopers return after a long time and create a new account without being aware of the rules. It appears that a substantial bribe paid to the mods will make the problem go away.

And several people created new accounts when they were unable to login using the account they used on the Vbulletin board. Some thought the moderators would be able to merge the accounts but it appears that can’t happen until we have a board administrator.

We’re not going to punish anyone for creating a sock due to account issues.

I can restore access to the original accounts (just send me an email at EngineerCompGeek@gmail.com) but I cannot merge accounts as that requires admin privileges.

I had multiple socks. After surgery I was required to wear compression socks, over which I put my regular socks.

I told no one here. Am I in trouble?

¡Eso si, que es!

Suckered once again. I thought this was a foot-fashion thread. Never mind.

Assuming you aren’t joking: do the forum tags not display for you, showing you which category (eg “About This Message Board”) the post is made in?

I know, I know… cut me some slack. I’m having a bad day. Leaving now.

I’m afraid so. But I think we can probably show leniency as you came forward on your own.

I suppose the next step is for him to mail the socks in for the Mods to destroy…or bury them in the cornfield.

Or just throw them in the quarry.

How does anyone believe you are not wintersport related foot apparel?


As a specific example, I was locked out after the change to Discourse. I tried to contact Tuba but unfortunately she passed away.

The problem I found (possibly because I am Der Stupidz) is I was unable to find any email address, anywhere, for any of the mods. Note they have started giving them out since then.

So I felt forced to create a sock (which I called "IAMASOCK or something) as the only way of contacting the SDMB and my first post was to admit being a sock and asking for help to get my original account back. ECG kindly assisted with that.


I don’t any reasonable person would consider creating a second account because you can’t access the first to be socking. I was curious how often someone creates a second account to chime in and agree with himself in a thread, or to play out different personalities.

It’s pretty rare. It’s only happened a few times while I have been a mod.

I remember one troll who tried to stir up controversy over flat earther stuff (or something like that) and no one here really cared, so he created a sock to argue with himself, which I thought was kinda funny.

We also have a serial socker from Texas who was actually a bit difficult to sort out at first because he had created such a huge online presence for a female sock that she showed up on facebook, linkedin, etc. and seemed to be a real person. She wasn’t. He goes to such great lengths to create his different personalities that I’m pretty sure he still has a sock or two around here that we haven’t found yet.

Those types of socks are very rare. The vast majority of socks are users who were banned previously.