Sock Puppet Account
A fake online identity
I have a sock puppet account that I use to gush about Slang.net slang definitions. Bet you'll never find it.
|Infodemic||A viral spread of misinformation|
|Fake news||Fake news source that pretends to be real|
|Onion check||To check the source of a news headline|
|Catfish||To assume a false identity|
|Blackfishing||Pretending to be ethnically Black|
|Wokefishing||Pretending to have progressive political views|
|DBTS||Don't believe that stuff|
A sock puppet account is a fake online account that a user typically uses to say good things about themselves while pretending to be somebody else. Sock accounts (as they are often called) can also be used to spread misinformation, create fake "arguments" that make a person look good, and manipulate social media and YouTube algorithms. The name sock puppet account is meant to conjure an image of a person manipulating a sock puppet, which represents the person's false online identity.
Some famous sock puppet accounts
In 2019, U.S. politician Mitt Romney admitted to maintaining a sock puppet account on Twitter. The account, which used the name Pierre Delecto, often posted celebrations and defenses of Romney's actions.
In 2020, U.S. politician Dean Browning was accused of operating a Twitter sock account, after posting a message in which he claimed to be "a black gay guy" to his official Twitter account. While Browning claimed the message he posted was sent to him from a follower, and he forgot to provide that context when posting the message, reporters tracked down what they believed to be Browning's (or at least someone's) sock account.
In 2021, Twitter shut down several sock accounts that claimed to be Amazon employees who were part of Amazon's Fulfillment Center Ambassadors program. According to Amazon spokesman Ty Rogers, Amazon actually asked Twitter to investigate and take appropriate action against these sock accounts.