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The Trolls Among Us -- NYT Magazine piece

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Double Down, Aug 1, 2008.

  1. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member


    Really interesting stuff, especially in light of some stuff that goes on here. What kind of on-line behavior is acceptable? One of the trolls in this piece was the guy who created the "Megan had it coming" page, about the 14-year-old MySpace girl who hung herself. He pretended to be Lori Drew (the mom accused of making the fake boyfriend page and of bullying Megan) and fucked with people just for entertainment's sake. The trolls justify their behavior by saying, essentially, that they're destroying people in order to save them. If you care too much about what's said about you on-line, you deserve to feel pain and anger because it will change your behavior. That seems like complete bullshit, to be honest, and just a rationalization for doing mean-spirited things. But it makes for an interesting discussion: Do we really want to try and make some on-line actions illegal, when more likely they're simply immoral? And why can't we simply ignore the trolls when they clearly want us to take the bait?
  2. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Thanks for this. I just got done printing it and will read the article at lunch.
    I think Jones has it right when he said, paraphrasing here, that online flame wars were the thing to happen to current culture. Just destroying it.
    And that's something I agree with.
  3. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    If we could ignore the trolls, message boards would not exist.
  4. Pastor

    Pastor Active Member

    About the time this thread was started, I was halfway through the piece and was thinking about how this is an incredibly interesting topic.

    I think much of the problem begins with identity and how one defines him or herself. If the online identity is supposed to be a better you, then the troll is more likely to have an effect.

    The characters interviewed by the Times seemed, at the core, to be pretty rotten individuals. They were frustrated by whatever that had affected them in the real world and decided to take that frustration out on others. As they wield no power in the real world, it is the cyber world that must feel their wrath.
  5. Mizzougrad96

    Mizzougrad96 Active Member

    Great piece... Thanks DD...

    Very troubling and scary.
  6. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    I love how the author describes him as normal. Except, normal people don't flirt with waitresses by telling them a cat is demanding them to kill. This dude sounds like an enormous dork.
  7. SigR

    SigR Member

    Very good read.

    I've often noticed that some trolls lack the self-awareness to recognize that they are trolls.

    The quote I've always liked that should be at the end of every article about internet communication goes something like:

    The character of a man is not revealed by what he does in public, rather, it is revealed by what he does when nobody is watching.

    If anyone knows who said that (I thought churchill, but not positive) and the exact quote, I'd appreciate it.
  8. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Good lunch-time read.
    My thanks, again, to DD.
    Anyone want to guess the over-under on when the writer gets bombarded by death threats, violent rape and pizzas showing up at his apartment?
  9. Coming from the resident troll.

    This may be the funniest post I've ever read.
  10. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    And here...we....GO!
  11. Grimace

    Grimace Guest

    All set for a lengthy, wordy, whiney response.

    As far as the story. . .man! I thought trolls were just mildly annoying jerks. These guys are clinically insane. Calling the parents of a dead kid? Totally fucked up.
  12. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    This board may get ugly on occasion, but thankfully it is NOTHING like what was described in that article.
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