Before asking this question, I read Mark's similar one (About Suspension, posted on Oct 5 '11 and which got a few replies). In his question, Mark mentioned a member who was suspended but seemed to be active at the same time; however, in the end it turned out to be an edit to a former question of his that had gained reputation.

I've just noticed something which however does seem present activity, not just editing, on the part of a suspended member. I'm referring to two questions asked by Nortonn S, one seven hours ago (Single word for parallel-to-door), and the other yesterday, (Collapse on itself).

I know that when one is suspended one's reputation is shown as being 1, and that it is reinstated when the suspension period ends (in this specific case on July 2, 2014); however, I was under the impression that suspended people could visit the site but not write in it. Am I mistaken? Is this true for answers but not for questions? Are there other limitations which I'm not aware of?


2 Answers 2


This user is creating sockpuppets to circumvent the suspension. When they are discovered, the accounts are merged. This means that the profile accurately reflects the user's activity during the suspension. Hopefully that will be taken into account when the suspension ends.

In many cases, the sockpuppeted questions are deleted in order that no-one can gain rep from them (or waste time answering a troll); this tends not to happen where there are answers which have been upvoted because the answerer would lose rep he's worked for. Having said that, at least one of my upvoted answers has been deleted.

  • I understand the idea of a sockpuppet, but again I thought it should be under a different name, somehow disguised, whereas I think I remember the name from past months. Are you saying that the questions were asked under a different name and, having been discovered, they are now visible under the original name?
    – Paola
    Commented Oct 29, 2012 at 17:10
  • 5
    Yes, that's right. The sockpuppet account is merged with the real account and that's the name which appears against the question.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Commented Oct 29, 2012 at 17:11

I propose that when a user is suspended for sock-puppeting, and uses sock-puppets to evade the suspension, that said suspension duration should be reset to begin again at the date of the latest infraction. Possibly additional time in the penalty box could be added as well.

  • 3
    Indeed, I propose exponential backoff, or some other TCP congestion-avoidance algorithm. However, it seems to me that we do not know that such things are not already being applied. More, I strongly suspect that those in a position to know the answer to that question are also honor-bound from answering it publicly, since it would be too closely associated with a particular user or users, and thus forbidden from public view.
    – tchrist Mod
    Commented Nov 1, 2012 at 16:25
  • 3
    It appears extensions can't be applied. See kiamlaluno's comment on a related question. However, a suspension can simply be reimposed when it expires.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Commented Nov 1, 2012 at 16:27

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