Troll talk: The things you say…

August 2, 2009

Oh me-oh-me-oh, my-oh… I’ve had my fair share of troll bullshit this week.  I suppose I should have expected it; but, truthfully I was a little shocked at the sheer volume of sputum that was shitflinged my way by two individuals.

Two people who know me IRL who were pretending to be… uh, let’s see: Ben-Turd-Tom and Bonnie-Kat-Anna Moss.

If that’s not the text book case of pathetically crazy and someone w/too much time on their hands, I don’t know what is.

Enough about me (oh shut it.)  Let’s talk about troll behavior for a mom’ – shall we?

The comment of the troll known as Ted Fredricksson on the post below this got me thinking about typical troll rhetoric.

You see, trolls – while occasionally amusing – as a whole – are not that bright.  They are pack creatures; meaning, that one individual troll is unlikely to be able to think for themselves and come up with original sick burns.

There are, of course, exceptions to this rule – but, they’re rare.

Trolls rely upon anonymity.  Truthfully, if any of them met you IRL they’d never say to your face the kind of jackass shit they do to you so willingly online.  I was prepared to prove this theory during the OKStupid bullshit.  I actually volunteered to stand outside the Berkeley Library on an appointed date and time wearing a sign that said “I’m Adorkable Grrl” and allow any Internet weirdo who had the cahones to say to my face what they’d said about me online.

Not surprisingly the offer was not accepted.  Because to say shit to a real person – to their face – requires a level of honesty and bravery that the typical troll just doesn’t have.  It’s far easier to say shit anonymously to an avatar or icon than it is to a breathing human being.

I digress…

Point of this post is – trolls tend to use (repetitively, ad nauseum) the same few phrases to try and push your buttons.  If you know what they are prior to them using them, it diffuses the impact of the assholery and makes their attack that much more moot and weaksauce.

Here are some typical troll phrases:

  • You’re fat.
  • You’re ugly.
  • You’re stupid.
  • You’re self-important.
  • You’re a cunt/bitch/whore.
  • You are SO hurt by what I just said.

Those are the basic concept phrases – the exact wording can change and get more graphic, clearly.

As you can see; trolls phraseology has yet to move beyond the playground “you’re ugly and your mother dresses you funny” bullshit even in 20 years of these here innerwebs.

Even where trolls are inane and quite repetitive, somehow, sometimes when someone says a variation on the above to a person it makes them sidespin into Crazytown where their head explodes all over the Internet.  Which is stupid; but, whatevs – it happens.  This is where DFTT (refresher: don’t feed the trolls) needs to become a mantra.  The primary need of a troll is attention; and, regardless of how red you’re seeing at their comments, remember – sticks and stones…

Like my Mom always says, “Don’t get into a pissing contest with a skunk.”

When dealing with Internet trolls it’s really not a good move to be speaking from a place of anger; b/c that will just escalate it; and, remember – you just can’t win – even when you’re right, you’re wrong and the troll will just keep on saying it over and over and over and OVER again until you get tired of arguing with them OR until they find someone new to pick on.

There is a difference; however, between an anon troll trolling for the sake of lulz and someone who knows you IRL following you around the Internets trying to start shit.  One is sad and pathetic pathological behavior; the other is something to actually be concerned about.  Anonymous trolls – while annoying and often very graphic/explicit in their hatred for you – are probably not going to wish you actual harm in your actual life.  Their goal is attention and time suck online – in whole pretty harmless.

If you’ve got someone you KNOW behaving in the same way towards you it’s a bit more nefarious.  In those situations evaluate the situation carefully and make sure to keep documentation of what’s been said.  You know, just in case…  ‘Cause you can never predict how a truly crazy person will behave.

Oh yeah; and, if there is the rare opportunity to bust a troll?  Do it.  It sends a message back to the tribe; and, shames the stupid troll who couldn’t cover their tracks.  Remember not to get emotionally involved in that – keep distant – as if you get hot headed while busting the occasional troll you’ll open yourself up to a whole different realm of mockery.

But, busting a troll is one of the most satisfying experiences you can have.  From just embarrassing them in public; to actually causing reprimand or punishment in their actual lives it forces them to be accountable for their behavior and face consequences for being a dickwad.

EDIT: Oh yes, I forgot this part… Trolls LOVE LOVE LOVE to tell you what they think you’re thinking as fact.  I think it adds into their sense of importance, brilliance and their obvious delusions of self-grandeur.  When you tell them that they’re wrong about that, they’ll counter with repeating what they think you’re thinking again in more crude terms.

On that note… I am away.

[Image via Penny Arcade]

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