Saturday, October 11, 2014

Word review - "sock puppet", or "sockpuppet"

"No one's guilty" from our alternative environment.
What's wong with no progress? (Anonymous)
Merriam-Webster, Sock puppet. 1) a hand puppet made with a sock,  2) a false online identity used for deceptive purposes. 

Wikipedia, modified 8/14/14, "Sockpuppet (Internet)".  "A sockpuppet is an online identity used for purposes of deception. The term, a reference to the manipulation of a simple hand puppet made from a sock, originally referred to a false identity assumed by a member of an Internet community who spoke to, or about, themselves while pretending to be another person.[1] The term now includes other misleading uses of online identities, such as those created to praise, defend or support a person or organization,[2] or to circumvent a suspension or ban from a website. A significant difference between the use of a pseudonym[3] and the creation of a sockpuppet is that the sockpuppet poses as an independent third-party unaffiliated with the puppeteer. Many online communities attempt to block sockpuppets.

History - The term "sockpuppet" was used as early as July 9, 1993,[4] but did not become common in USENET groups until 1996. The first Oxford English Dictionary example of the term, defined as "a person whose actions are controlled by another; a minion," is taken from U.S. News and World Report, March 27, 2000.[5]  The history of reviewing one's own work under another name predates the Internet. Walt Whitman and Anthony Burgess both reviewed their books under pseudonyms.[6] Another notable example was Benjamin Franklin.[7] On October 21, 2013 the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) condemned paid advocacy sockpuppeting on Wikipedia and, on October 23, specifically banned editing by the public relations firm Wiki-PR.[8]

Note:  photograph/graphic from SodaHead. 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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