# What's with some new contributors flagrantly violating the rules for answering questions?

Recently I have posted a few questions in varying fields and new contributors keep posting with what only can be described as nonsense. Sometimes they're ill attempts at humour other times they are pseudomathematical arguments clearly posted in an attempt to confuse and mislead. This problem has only arisen in about the last week. Is there an ongoing problem with people trying to ruin the site? Is this happening to many other people lately?

Note: this is on the non-meta version

For instance, see here Is a group with order $3^3\cdot 5\cdot 7$ possible? Prof bob is referring to another nonsense post by a level 1 user which has since been deleted

These "answers" also appear to be co-ordinated. in a recent post of mine, I received 4 or 5 comments in the space of about 5 mins all from different level one users referring to each other's posts. ( they were a series of jokes )

• Thanks for raising this. I have seen some other nonsense recently, but I had brushed it off. If there is a pattern, it will be good for other people to keep an eye out for it, in addition to the moderators. – Carl Mummert Nov 12 '18 at 0:14
• @CarlMummert in order to keep a good track of it do you think it would be more effective to add links to future incidents here or do you think flagging for moderator intervention would suffice ? – Voltron Nov 12 '18 at 1:15
• A "coordinated attack" seems unlikely. Could it be the same person under different users? – Yuriy S Nov 12 '18 at 12:34
• @YuriyS May have hit the nail on the head? We can flag it for moderator attention. They may be able to verify (beyond reasonable doubt) that the two accounts belong to the same person. In some cases they may need to refer the case to the SE staff for further investigation with shinier tools. – Jyrki Lahtonen Nov 12 '18 at 13:50
• Do you have other links to other such questions? – Namaste Nov 12 '18 at 15:10
• Please post the links to the other questions. If there are shenanigans that will help us track down the source. – Alexander Gruber Nov 12 '18 at 20:43
• @amWhy There was only one other remarkable case here math.stackexchange.com/questions/2987719/… this is where 4 or 5 accounts in the space of about 5 mins posted answers that were all in fact jokes. The answers have since been deleted because I flagged it for moderator attention but I'm sure some of you guys have access to the answers anyway ( if you're a moderator that is ). One thing that was noteworthy is that one of the usernames was I love fermions and the other was I hate fermions so there – Voltron Nov 14 '18 at 0:52
• Is an obvious link between the users . be it that they are the same person or part of a group of a people I can't say. – Voltron Nov 14 '18 at 0:53
• Yikes, @exodius! Fortunately all four answers there (second link you give) were deleted simultaneously by a mod, and the accounts of the "four users" who posted them, are now deleted. – Namaste Nov 14 '18 at 20:47
• I believe in my country we refer to such people as teenagers. Given the mathematical content and humor I deduce this is the work of a teenager who knows just enough math to make these rather silly answers. Now, do they have a particular connection to the OP ? Or, is it the nature of his questions which happens to fall in the wheelhouse of the humor of our young prankster ? This I do not know. – James S. Cook Nov 20 '18 at 4:31
• Can anyone show how those spam-answers are? All those has been deleted and hence I can't see it :D – Vee Hua Zhi Nov 20 '18 at 12:56
• @JamesS.Cook I think I can say pretty certainly that I don't know them. It would just seem very outlandish to me for various reasons. But I agree with the rest of your post it does seem quite childish .... inline with the perpetrators being teenagers. originally I had worried that many people had been experiencing this and that it could perhaps be "professional" spammers. But it seems the problem is contained to but a few posts so yes probably childish trolling. – Voltron Nov 20 '18 at 20:47
• Ah, this is the thread you mentioned to me in the comments of your question. Very strange indeed... I would hazard a guess that it's one person. Four different people would be highly unlikely. Great job to the moderators for solving this, trolling has no place on this website! – user624679 Dec 9 '18 at 21:48

I want to draw your attention to these two questions:

https://math.stackexchange.com/questions/3000195/first-countable-space-is-sequentially-compact-iff-countably-compact

https://math.stackexchange.com/questions/3000227/definite-integral-of-function-given-constraint

It seems that 4 users with the names MSc Roberto, Robert PhD, Monsieur_Bobert and Bachelor Bob are accounts that belong to the same person. These names, just like prof Bob, all resemble each other. This is no coincidence. Also now the questions and answers seem very coordinated.

Edit: The questions have been deleted now.

• The links are not dead; the questions have been deleted, and are visible only to those with enough points (10,000, I think). – Gerry Myerson Nov 15 '18 at 21:28
• And the relevant user accounts have been deleted. – Namaste Nov 15 '18 at 21:29
• @GerryMyerson Thanks for the correction. I adjusted it. – Ernie060 Nov 15 '18 at 21:33