New forum policy regarding the abuse of alternate user-names After much deliberation, the administrators of these forums have deemed it necessary to implement a new policy regarding alternate aliases, aka "socks", or "sockpuppets". While we understand that, from time to time, the ability to post under a different name can provide such things as situational humor, irony, or an occasional anonymity as a break from your usual name, this ability also allows for the system to be abused because no limitations have been put in place. The purpose of this new policy is to implement just such a limitation. The reasoning behind this can be seen in this thread. However, to summarize, we believe that a limitation needs to be in place to prohibit excessive abuse of this system because: 1) Having hundreds of socks serves to confuse members, dilute the community of true individuals, and can sometimes be offensive, even if no one speaks up about it. 2) Having hundreds of socks is problematic if any of those socks is ever banned, for whatever reason. It would then be necessary for the admins to search for and ban hundreds of additional names. 3) Not restriciting the number of socks a member can have gives the administration no ground to prevent everyone from doing this, which could potentially be disastrous, communally speaking (preventing members from truly getting to know one another) Please understand, however, the purpose of this new policy is NOT to eliminate sockpuppets, or their use. The intent, rather, is to target and prohibit excessive use of socks, which can lead to the problems listed above. The administration understands that the members may enjoy being able to use one or two other aliases from time to time, thus we've taken that into consideration. Thus, please be advised of this new policy: As of now, any use of socks by a member that can be seen as abusive, excessive, or harmful to the community (for whatever reason: spamming, offensive, etc.) is formally against the rules. The administration fully grants members the right to have a reasonable number of socks (any number over 3 will likely result in your being questioned about this), but we encourage everyone to post with their actual username most of the time, so that other members can get to know you. Thank you in advance for your cooperation with this new rule.