I have seen people create a copy that wasn't a fork before. I have a question though: if the project is going to have the exact same name, what are some reasons to break the "fork" connection between your fork and the original?
If the connection as fork no longer makes sense.
The example used in this post started as a fork from an example repo.
It was great to get started, but the connection no longer makes sense. No pull requests from my fork to that original example repository would be logical.
It can make extra contributions harder.
If anyone wanted to fork, (and contribute to) gatsby-theme-nicky-blog while it was still marked as a fork of that example repo. GitHub wouldn't let them do that if they forked that example repo as well.
We're a place where coders share, stay up-to-date and grow their careers.
We strive for transparency and don't collect excess data.