Trolls

October 31, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Trolls

Trolls (Cyberbully's) are present on almost any internet platform one can consider ranging from simple threads to forums. They can take many forms from the 'expert' in the field that offers an opinion that dare not be challenged, to individuals making outright threats against others. They are often very disruptive to any meaningful discussion and may cause high levels of doubt and anxiety in their victims.

A troll (or trolls) tend to aggregate where other people gather, much like the mythical trolls hiding under bridges waiting for people to cross. They often jump into a thread attacking any weakness that they may think may be present. Often self absorbed with their own feelings of worth they thrive on arguments, may spread lies, offer their own twisted opinions, and want nothing more than a emotional response from an audience.  They may seek to disrupt your following and even your business in some cases. When they perceive they perceive a defense or even an attack on themselves they often resort to name calling, slurs, and social/political labels to try to gain power. Very similar to the mythical trolls, they are often Cyber-cowards and would rarely if ever confront their victim(s) in real life with an actual honest conversation.

Trolls can be difficult to defeat, since they often have an altered sense of reality. They don't play by the same set of rules as rational people. There are things that can help:

  • They want an emotional response from you; don't give it to them (ignore them entirely if possible). If you step down to their level, things will almost always get worse. Sometimes trolls travel in packs like wild animals.
  • Report the troll to a moderator. The troll could be banned from the site.
  • Announce your audience that we have a troll in our midst attacking those who are trying to create art. Like the mythical troll, some do not like being forced out into the light (taking control from them).
  • Ask the troll for solid facts to back up their position- often they will only provide vague personal accounts.
  • Thank them for their opinion, but express the need to get back on track with the main discussion.

Remember that in many cases, you will not know the troll. Although they can be hurtful, their words are essentially meaningless in the real world especially if you have an audience that appreciates your work.  However in some cases trolls can escalate to stalkers and follow you on your personal pages, forums, and other places you may visit. Many cities have laws against cyber-stalking especially if threats are issued. Resort to law enforcement if and when you feel the need to have help.

 

 

 


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