View Full Version : Question about odd user name stuff on another v.bulletin forum

05-10-2010, 03:07 AM
I've been a member on another forum for a few years.

A while back a member dropped off the radar for a while, claiming personal problems. When she came back, she claimed she couldn't sign on under her old name and registered under a new name.

Now she's back under her old user name. There have been a few instances where both users are on at the same time. As a mod I can see that the users are on the same IP address, yet the member claims she has no knowledge of being on under both names at the same time. She claims that the other must be logging on automatically.

I'm pretty sure that you both can't be on a forum at the same time, on the same computer, under different names. Am I wrong?

She's now claiming that the skins are switching on her from default to another.

This person has a history of telling stonking great fibs and I'm not entirely sure she's being truthful.

It's a v.bulletin forum version 3.8.2

Any ideas? The forum admin/owners aren't on very much at the moment because of RL issues.

05-10-2010, 03:23 AM
You can be two different people from the one computer, if you use two different browsers (possible if she's doing it to stir trouble).

Otherwise, it could be some sort of really weird caching error.

05-10-2010, 06:08 AM
You could probably do it with the same browser installed twice (in two different locations).

Buy yeah, this smells like a troublemaker to me.

I suggest delete (at least) one of the ID's. Problem solved.

Matera the Mad
05-10-2010, 06:48 AM
What he said!

05-10-2010, 04:02 PM
I used to moderate a site where this was relatively common. The easiest way someone could do it was to have both Internet Explorer and Firefox (or any other two browsers on the same computer) open, or to have two computers.

Most often they do it either to cause problems or for one persona to support the other persona's opinions, stances, actions, etc.

Be aware, though, that it's possible for two people to have identical IPs without knowing they do, such as people sharing an internet connection at a university or an office building. But what are the odds that they'd be at the same V-bulletin site?

What we did to 'out' these people was log the IPs and connection times and durations, and log or gather what they said in the public forums. Once we had amassed enough talk (a few pages was plenty), it was pretty easy to spot odd turns of phrase, unusual and consistent misspellings, and other unique traits which told us the two were the same individual. How odd, that they always arrive and leave near the same times, too! We simply deleted the newer account without discussion or warning, since our rules for use included one account per member.

Maryn, grizzled veteran

Margarita Skies
05-10-2010, 04:16 PM
That's true, some people have the same IP and they post, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they're the same person, at least not always. It's not common for two different people to post on the same internet connection, though so it's hard to know what is going on.

05-10-2010, 06:51 PM
I suggest delete (at least) one of the ID's. Problem solved.

Deleting an account in vBulletin or any other system sitting on top of a relational database is more than a little foolish.

There's a reason that there's a merge account function; there's a reason that SQL databases include the JOIN command.

It's not only hard on the underlying database, particularly if you do while it's live, you're going to leave "holes" in the conversation, gaps in the discussion threads.

Moreover, deleting accounts that are active sets a precedent.