Do Not Feed The Trolls

For many people, the characterizing feature of trolling or 'trolling for suckers' is the perception of intent to disrupt a community in some way. Inflammatory, sarcastic, disruptive or humorous content is posted, meant to draw other users into engaging the troll in a fruitless confrontation. The greater the reaction from the community the more likely the user is to troll again, as the person develops beliefs that certain actions achieve his/her goal to cause chaos. This gives rise to the often repeated protocol in Internet culture: "Do not feed the trolls".

So now, here's the question of the day: Having posted this, am I finger pointing... or am I actually a troll that I myself have warned you not to feed?

Well now, I guess that all depends on the response posts, doesn't it? x}>



  • 32 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • "fruitless confrontation" is the key phrase. You can't engage in debate with people who are just interested in creating controversy.

    Whether you are a troll or not, your point is well taken.

    I have realized that there are some people who visit this forum simply to create trouble. Responding to them is pointless.
  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-19-06 AT 12:23PM (CST)[/font][br][br]It's sort of like changing the radio station on your dial - if you don't like what you are listening to, then just dial up soft rock.

    It's a bit like our political arena, a whole bunch of folks choose soft rock, and therefore don't get to be heard. Then there are those that spin so much, there message is known before they open their mouths - like dem James Carvil, you know he is going to act like a rabid pit bull and urinate all over anything republican. The republicans have their own version that does the reverse.

    So by all means, if you see a post from some moniker you cannot deal with, then click to another thread.

    Lots of folks would prefer plain white toast or vanilla ice cream.

    It is my belief that we attain our highest performance when we are challenged. That we don't stretch to get that little bit more out of ourselves unless there is something or someone pushing. Just watch the Olympics a bit to see what I mean.
  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-20-06 AT 08:37AM (CST)[/font][br][br]Marc, you're correct that achievement comes from challenge. No question. But that's not the issue here. The issue is disingenuousness and incivility. People with legitimate points and the critical thinking skills to support them have no need to resort to ad hominem arguments.

    Besides which, I don't know where you got your radio, but mine doesn't personally insult me.

  • "Marc, you're correct that achievement comes from challenge. No question. But that's not the issue here. The issue is disingenuousness and incivility. People with legitimate points and the critical thinking skills to support them have no need to resort to ad hominem arguments.

    Besides which, I don't know where you got your radio, but mine doesn't personally insult me."

    Radio is BROADcasting and by it's very nature is not as personalized as forum posting, however, there are some parallels that can be drawn.

    Most of a radio audience is anonymous - just along for the ride. Forums have their lurkers and watchers - they are also anonymous. Once a person takes a posting plunge, they become known. Sort of like a guest on a radio program or a listener that gathers up his/her courage and calls in.

    Once a person has made that leap, anonimity vanishes and suddenly the individual is exposed to anything and everything that the FCC language police doesn't bleep. But let's face it, that bleeping is generally confined to bad words, not insults or racism or any of a wide variety of bad manners.

    If a person can't take it, he/she shouldn't call in. Or do as OBWM suggests, ignore it. So an individual can remember the monikers of those posters they find uncomfortable - and just pass over their comments, thereby avoiding whatever diminishment or growth that might otherwise occur.

    Maybe we should take that same approach to crime in the streets - let's just ignore it. Or better yet, let's complain and have it erased, then it is like it never happened and we can go one as though we are safe from all harm.

    I don't like name calling, bad manners, etc. But I like it even less when someone else desides I need protecting, or that I have exceeded a third parties idea of what is acceptable. The censorship that has permeated this site is more offensive to me than the "muggings."

    Any poster can take me to task for my facts, my opinions, my manners, my spirituality, my political stance (GDI) - you name it, bring it on. I reserve the right to respond in kind, if I consider it necessary. I will not ask for any third party to step in and protect me. I will make those decisions and be responsible for my actions.

    Any individual should expect the same.
  • "Maybe we should take that same approach to crime in the streets - let's just ignore it."

    Society is governed by laws, without which is anarchy. We know crime will not go away on its own, and ultimately, certain laws, theft, murder, assault, etc., exist to protect the innocent, the decent human beings in our society who desire a degree of civility. Forums and the blogosphere are a microcosm of society, you will find a wide range of governed forums and blogs. On some, there is a free-for-all attitude of saying whatever you want, no holds barred. Others, are regulated to varying degrees. Ultimately, it is up to the owner of the forum or blog to establish the type of entity they desire. And human nature being what it is, there must be a certain degree of policing or else the forum/blog can become ruled by anarchy.

    Marc, I highly doubt you desire a society ruled by anarchy with people allowed to do completely as they want.
  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-20-06 AT 01:49PM (CST)[/font][br][br]Not at all Ray, I desire the ability to have free and open discourse on this forum.

    Comparing forum conduct to a microcosm of society is a bit of a stretch in my opinion. There are probably certain very limited parallels one can draw from one's conduct in a forum to one's conduct in society at large, but let's make a very broad generalization here.

    Folks on this forum are not robbing convenience stores, beating up people in alleys or doing drive by shootings. No one on this forum is doing the equivalent of yelling "fire" in a crowded theatre, no one in this forum is breaking any criminal laws.

    Let's keep our perspective focused, we are talking about conversations here.
  • You are correct, Marc. But, I was just responding to your statement concerning crime on the streets. No one has been been physically harmed, but we have experienced name calling, innuendo and even libel.
  • If it gets all the way to libel, the tort courts can make you rich, but as to the rest -
  • "Responding to them is pointless."

    This reinforces one of my favorite pieces of advice I ever received, "Never get in a pissing contest with a skunk because even if you win, you'll smell like you lost."

  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-20-06 AT 06:50AM (CST)[/font][br][br]That's going to be my "pearl of wisdom" today, Larry. Thanks! I never get tired of being challenged by the contributors to this forum (new and old alike).

    Thanks for keeping things in perspective y'all.
  • >"Responding to them is pointless."
    >This reinforces one of my favorite pieces of
    >advice I ever received, "Never get in a pissing
    >contest with a skunk because even if you win,
    >you'll smell like you lost."
    Great one Larry!

    Goes along with...
    "Never argue with an idiot...
    they'll bring you down to their level and beat you with experience"

  • Ironic comments for those who have such issues with name calling.
  • Whether it's a game, a sport, or a forum, there are rules that the participants have to follow. And they're not that hard to understand. Plus they leave plenty of room for spirited, heated and passionate discussion, discourse, argument, and even innuendo. So where is that magic "line" which, if crossed, gets you tossed? Here is a good example.

    I coached sports for many years. I had a good friend who was a referee, and a damned good one. Many times I yelled at him, cursed at him and after the game, had some beers with him. During one heated on-field exchange, he revealed to me where the "line" is. He told me (actually he was yelling it at me) that if I didn't like a call and I said, "That's a stupid call!", then that's OK. If I said "Your stupid for making that call!", then I get tossed. During the heat of the moment, my stupidity faced up to the challenge and I got tossed. But lesson learned.

  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-21-06 AT 02:03PM (CST)[/font][br][br]:)
  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 02-22-06 AT 01:39AM (CST)[/font][br][br]I've been on the road this week so I haven't checked in on the forum that much. I heard that there was a reward posted if anyone could prove that I am not OneBadWebMonkey.

    Well, I am not. OneBadWebMonkey's name is apparently Mark according to one of his earlier posts. Yes, he is from Oregon but thats about it.

    I believe in order to have two forum identities you would need to have TWO subscriptions to HR HERO and I can barely afford one.

    Can I claim the reward?
  • Actually, Paul, you can create more than one Forum screen name with only one subscription. For example, you can let other people in your HR office (or benefits people, etc.) use the Forum by creating their own screen name (using your customer #).

    And a handful of people over the years have created a new identity after getting into bitter arguments on the Forum. It's pretty rare. The Forum moderators can tell by looking up your customer information.

    James Sokolowski
  • Interesting BUT I am still not OneBadWebMonkey which is probably a dissapointment to the conspiracy types.
  • x:-/ I looked up your account and OneBadWebMonkey's, and you guys have different names, separate subscriptions, different employers, you live in different cities.... Although the DNA tests aren't back from the lab, you two seem to be entirely different people! But you knew that already, didn't you?

    James Sokolowski
  • James, Paul did admit he was on the road this week. He could be like one of these guys that has a wife in two different cities and they never find out about each other until the guy dies and it comes out when the will is read.
  • I've heard that before Gene edited his own post he offered a $250 reward for anyone who could prove that I am not OneBadWebMonkey. The money was to go to a charity of MLS choice.

    I'd vote for the Red Cross Gulf Coast Relief Fund in honor of Mardi Gras. [url][/url] I am sure that the money would go to folks who really need it.
  • I vote for the "LarryC of MN 10,000 Foundation" to correct the 10,000 injustices that are taking over our state: 1. The diversion of good corn crop away from Jim Beam distilleries and into wasteful biodeisel fuel. 2. Replace the Loon as our state bird with the loveable Grackle. 3. The arrest of our vampire gubenatorial candidate in Illinois. To name few.
  • Larry, if that grackle thing works out, I would like to personally export several million grackles from Austin to the Minnesota destination of your choice.
  • A large, shiny, black bird** -- related to crows, I think -- that overpoulate my area...and other areas too, evidently. They make a large array of earsplitting, surreal noises and generally make a mess.

    ** This describes the males. The females are drab muddy-brown while the males are resplendent in plumage so black that it's almost blue.

    But I can't speak for Minnesota grackles who, as far as I know, might sport fur coats and snowshoes.
  • That's pretty accurate, Whirlwind. In addition they have crazy eyes which mirrors they're behavior. After flying they don't land; they crash. They go to great effort to poop, pick it up in their beaks, and fly to the nearest birdbath to deposit what looks like a black and white oyster. They kick they're young out of the nest prematurely. Some fly, most die. This makes me wonder why there are so damned many of them. They make a cheerful sound that reminds me of a raspy scream. A bunch of them "communicating" together sounds like someone's first lesson on the bagpipes. A whole flock of them makes a noise so irritating that it reminds me of the state legislature in session; therefore, my desire to see it become the state bird.
  • How would you spend the $250 if MLS selected your charity "Grackle For Minnesota State Bird"?

    You can't just expect MLS to select your charity without full disclosure. How much of the $250 would go to "administrative costs" provided by LarryC?
  • Hey, hey, Paul. I would only be conducting my charity as per the norm established by the well known charities. Just give me the $250 and I'll get "started".
  • We have an annoying crow family living in the marsh behind our across the street neighbors. They get to calling each other for breakfast pretty early. I'd like to have a gun and good aim about that time.

    Cheryl C.
  • Invite Dick Cheney over for breakfast. He'll take care of the dammned bird AND the noisy neighbor all at once :)
  • FYI:

    I am not Paul in Cannon Beach.


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