As a ship its fans tend to regard it lightheartedly, although there are shippers that believe Jensen and Misha are in a behind-the-scenes relationship.
Although there are relatively fewer Jensen/Misha fics than its predecessors, the duo has become a popular force in fandom over the years. The ship is frequently reblogged and tweeted, with the Cockles fandom a contributing force in winning Jensen and Misha the Teen Choice Award for Best Chemistry in 2015.
The Cockles fandom tends to take a playful approach to the ship, helped along by fans perception of a flirty dynamic between Jensen and Misha. Incidents such as the resume-off from Jibcon 2012, or the duo dancing to “Singing in the Rain” at Jibcon 2013 are seen to support this.
As with the characters of Dean and Castiel, the concept of lack of “personal space” has also become an ongoing joke for fans and the actors (see this video from Jibcon 2012 for example).
The arch-nemesis of Cockles fans is the infamous Cockles Tree. Fans visiting the set of Supernatural caught video, including Jensen and Misha rehearsing a scene, but a tree partially blocked the view.
In November 2013, Misha posted a link "accidentally" to a tumblr post titled "The epic love story of Jensen Ackles and Misha Collins". In March 2015, Jensen posted what became known as the “Sunset Pic” of himself and Misha during a filming break.
In January 2016, Jensen made a video to celebrate his People's Choice Awards with some help from Misha, who had also been nominated Watch it here.
On 12th February 2016, Jensen and Misha launched the SPNFamily Crisis Support Network and their fundraising "You Are Not Alone" t-shirts with a Livestreaming video which provided much glee to Cockles fans.
Cockles is sometimes inclusive of “JDMV," a subset of Cockles shipping incorporating Jensen, Danneel, Misha, and Vicki into a single polyamorous ship both in fanfiction and in fan theories.
Fans of J2 and Cockles often engage in shipping wars.