Sockpuppets are alternate usernames created by a registered user. The use of sockpuppets is discouraged on most wikis, including Trapped in the Closet. Sockpuppetry may be dealt with by administrators as follows:
- The use of sockpuppets to get around a ban will result in the sockpuppet username being permanently blocked. At the discretion of the administrators, the length of the original username's block may be extended.
- The use of sockpuppets to create the impression that multiple users support a single user's views will result in the sockpuppet username being permanently blocked. However, the original user should not be blocked: only warned. Persistent use of such sockpuppets may be considered disruptive behaviour similar to vandalism, however.
- Encouraging friends or online associates to create new user accounts in order to bolster support in a vote or discussion is also heavily discouraged. Users tempted to do this should be aware that if these new users use the same computer or even ISP, they may be found to share an IP address. In this situation, regardless of who is behind the account in reality, it is difficult to tell such new users from sockpuppets of the original user. Further, administrators may discard votes which come from very new users regardless of their origins.
- If a registered user wishes to change his or her username, thus having two separate usernames, this is not an example of sockpuppetry. The old username need not be blocked: however, it is recommended that a note be placed on their old userpage noting the change of name.
- Similarly, if a user who has used sockpuppets in the past wishes to change their username to that of one of their sockpuppets — even one which has been previously blocked — this is acceptable if the original username is not currently being blocked. The "new" name must then be unblocked, and the old user page must note the namechange.
- The use of multiple accounts for other reasons (for example, registering a separate account in order to run bot, or to prevent impersonation) may be acceptable. In fact, if a user wishes to run helpful bots, this is necessary so an accidentally out-of-control droid can be blocked while the droidmaster is still allowed to edit. However, the identity of the main user must be specified, and the secondary account cannot be used to vote separately in discussions. Use of alternate usernames solely in order to make additional userpages — i.e. for purposes of vanity — will contravene our user page policy.