Like any other website that is open to user-submitted content, Wikimedia wikis get their fair share of troublemakers. Included in this are people who register multiple accounts and use them for malicious purposes like vandalism. This practice is known as sockpuppetry. However, unlike a lot of other major websites, the administration of a Wikimedia wiki is decentralized and managed by volunteers.
In addition, the privacy of all users is protected, so if someone registers an account, even the administrators cannot see the technical information associated with that account. This means that administrators are often left guessing as to whether a series of accounts are operated by a single person, which can allow that person to cause significant disruption to the wiki.
When a complaint is received, an acknowledgement of the email is sent to the case filer. The Commission discusses the case to decide whether it is within their remit, and informs the case filer of the outcome of this discussion. If the case is outside the Commission’s remit, it suggests alternative avenues to pursue the person’s complaint (for example, the email response team). If the case is within the Commission’s remit, the matter is investigated using the evidence provided by the case filer. If it is required, the Commission may ask the person filing the complaint for clarification, or invite comment from the relevant CheckUser.
If you have any questions or comments, or if you have a case for the Ombudsman Commission, contact information is available on the Commission’s page on meta.
Dan Garry (User:Deskana), English Wikipedia and Ombudsman Commission