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Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/SPI/header

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Administrator instructions

If you suspect sock puppetry by an administrator, or if you need to submit off-wiki evidence for some other reason, you must email the CheckUser team to open an investigation. Private information, emails, logs, and other sensitive evidence must not be posted on Wikipedia. All evidence related to a sockpuppet investigation must otherwise be posted on the designated page.
What is a sockpuppet?

This page is for requesting that we investigate whether two or more Wikipedia accounts are being abusively operated by the same person.

Before opening an investigation, you need good reason to suspect sock puppetry.

  1. Evidence is required. When you open the investigation, you must immediately provide evidence that the suspected sock puppets are connected. The evidence will need to include diffs of edits that suggest the accounts are connected. (This requirement is waived if the edits in question are deleted; in this case just provide the names of the pages that the accounts have been editing.)
  2. You must provide this evidence in a clear way. Vaguely worded submissions will not be investigated. You need to actually show why your suspicion that the accounts are connected is reasonable.

Investigations are conducted by a clerk, who will compare the accounts' behaviour and determine whether they are probably connected; this is a behavioural evidence investigation. Upon request, investigations can also be conducted by a CheckUser, who can look at the physical location of the accounts (and other technical data) in order to determine how likely it is they are connected; this is a technical evidence investigation.

Due to Wikipedia's CheckUser policy, CheckUsers will conduct a technical investigation only if clear, behavioural evidence of sock puppetry is also submitted; if you ask for technical evidence to be looked at but do not provide behavioural evidence, the investigation may not be allowed to proceed. Additionally, CheckUsers will not publicly connect an account with an IP address per the privacy policy except in extremely rare circumstances.

How to open an investigation:

To open an investigation (or case), enter the user name (or if there isn't one, IP address) of the oldest-created account (the "sockmaster"), or the previous case name, in the box below, then click "Submit". Note: Do not include "User:" or any other commentary.

For example, if the case name is about User:John Doe or a prior case was at Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/John Doe, you should enter John Doe in the box below.

You will then be taken to another page containing a form you must complete to open the investigation. The process for opening a subsequent investigation on the same user is the same as for creating a new case. Again, do not include "User:" in any of the sock or ip fields.

If you also wish a CheckUser to investigate, change |checkuser=no to |checkuser=yes in the edit box on the next page and explain why you are requesting it.

Note: You can also open an investigation using Twinkle if you are autoconfirmed. After installing Twinkle, an "ARV" option will appear in the "TW" tab on any user, user talk, or user contributions page. Clicking on this option and selecting either "Sockpuppeteer" or "Sockpuppet" will allow you to fill in a few simple fields to file a report. The report will be automatically formatted for you.

If you are an anonymous (IP address) editor, and the case page is protected or does not exist, please click "show" to the right and use the box below
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