Trolls and Trolling

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Maybenaut
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Trolls and Trolling

#1

Post by Maybenaut » Wed Aug 22, 2018 6:51 pm

Here is a place where we can discuss trolls and trolling generally. It is not a place to talk about, or insult, other members of the fogbow.



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listeme
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#2

Post by listeme » Wed Aug 22, 2018 7:05 pm

Thank you!

I'll copy/expand some of my posts tomorrah.


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Judge Roy Bean
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#3

Post by Judge Roy Bean » Wed Aug 22, 2018 10:49 pm

For those who have been on the various fields of sports, does the phrase "trash talk" come to mind? It's been part of the game as long as I can remember.

If you haven't been on the field where only the players and officials can hear what's going on between the players you might only have been exposed to what the sports leagues let come out. That controlled situation seems to be fading away.

Thus, on the 'net, we seem to get all manner of opinion. Yet we have no idea what is or isn't filtered, promoted, spread, limited, re-cast, trimmed, adjusted, edited or simply blocked. The motives of those who have an opinion about the source material suddenly come into play and we may not know them.

Trolls are nothing new - they've long been part of the 'net landscape. What we should be worrying about who is making the decisions about what is or isn't real.


“Where all think alike, no one thinks very much.”
Walter Lippmann

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Foggy
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#4

Post by Foggy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:11 am

Yeah, great analogy if this was an athletic contest, one team against another.

But that's not what Fogbow is. As it says in the rules, this is more like a cocktail party, where people with similar interests get together in order to discuss current events and activities. And for better or worse, I'm hosting the cocktail party in my virtual home and I insist that you treat my other guests with respect. .

I try to be welcoming. If I was a bad host no one would want to join the party. I try hard to be a fair and pleasant dick tater, but the plain fact is that I'm the owner of the board, and if you're here for "trash talk" and you want to disrupt the party and insult my guests, then I'm going to remove you.

New people see the party and wander in off the street, and they are welcome to join. Others tire of the discussion and leave. Somehow the party is still lively and fun after almost 10 years, and new people are still joining us. We're still averaging more than 300 posts a day, just like in the heyday of the birther movement. It's a good party, and you'll find food in the Recipes thread.

But I will not allow fighting or abusive behavior towards any of my guests. If you want to pretend to be some sort of mental gladiator and you think trash talk and trying to conquer others is a good idea, there's a virtual coliseum just a little further down the internet and you should leave the party and go try your luck against the other mental gladiators. We will wish you a happy contest.

But this is a safe space. If you are here for pleasant and interesting discussions, pull up a seat and enjoy the place. If any pretend gladiators start to hassle you I will gush them like bugs. I was a gladiator myself for many, many years. I don't do that anymore.

BYOB. :bighug: :thumbs:


In my defense, I was left unsupervised.

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ZekeB
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#5

Post by ZekeB » Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:14 am

But I don't have any boobs. :crying:


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Nech mě domluvit! - Orly Taitz

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Foggy
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#6

Post by Foggy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:22 am

That's OK, Zeke. Lots of other people here have boobs. I'm pretty proud of the fact that so many intelligent, amazing women have joined my party and many of them are still here. I have one wife and dozens of girlfriends. My wife has met quite a few of the girlfriends in person and they're her friends too.

And hey, we even have a Virtual Drunk Tank if you have a few too many and need to sleep it off.

Food ... boobs ... a virtual drunk tank ...

What else could you possibly want in an online cocktail party? :blink:


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Whip
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#7

Post by Whip » Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:04 am

Foggy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:11 am
Yeah, great analogy if this was an athletic contest, one team against another.

But that's not what Fogbow is. As it says in the rules, this is more like a cocktail party, where people with similar interests get together in order to discuss current events and activities. And for better or worse, I'm hosting the cocktail party in my virtual home and I insist that you treat my other guests with respect. .

I try to be welcoming. If I was a bad host no one would want to join the party. I try hard to be a fair and pleasant dick tater, but the plain fact is that I'm the owner of the board, and if you're here for "trash talk" and you want to disrupt the party and insult my guests, then I'm going to remove you.

New people see the party and wander in off the street, and they are welcome to join. Others tire of the discussion and leave. Somehow the party is still lively and fun after almost 10 years, and new people are still joining us. We're still averaging more than 300 posts a day, just like in the heyday of the birther movement. It's a good party, and you'll find food in the Recipes thread.

But I will not allow fighting or abusive behavior towards any of my guests. If you want to pretend to be some sort of mental gladiator and you think trash talk and trying to conquer others is a good idea, there's a virtual coliseum just a little further down the internet and you should leave the party and go try your luck against the other mental gladiators. We will wish you a happy contest.

But this is a safe space. If you are here for pleasant and interesting discussions, pull up a seat and enjoy the place. If any pretend gladiators start to hassle you I will gush them like bugs. I was a gladiator myself for many, many years. I don't do that anymore.

BYOB. :bighug: :thumbs:
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listeme
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#8

Post by listeme » Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:52 am

While I sort out mah feelings and so on, here's a decent write-up from the good folks at Wikipedia:
The nature of trolls is to slip from any definition intended to constrain their actions and to find new and innovative ways to annoy. What follows are some comments that point generally in the direction of what a troll is and what trolls do. There is no enforcement against trolls on most Wikipedia projects, as it is impossible to comprehensively define all behaviors that could be considered trolling.

Trolling is a deliberate, bad faith attempt to disrupt the editing of Wikipedia. Ignorance is not trolling. Genuine dissent is not trolling. Biased editing, even if defended aggressively, is in itself not trolling. By themselves, misguided nominations, votes, and proposed policy are not trolling. They are only trolling when they are motivated by a program of malice rather than ignorance or bias. This requires a judgment of the personal motivation for another's action. Such a judgment can never be made with anything approaching certainty. This fact should always be kept in mind when one is tempted to label someone a troll.

When you try to decide if someone is a troll, strive to assume they are not. Explain errors politely and reasonably; point them towards policies, the manual of style and relevant past discussions. Do not conclude they are a troll until they have shown complete inability or unwillingness to listen to reason or to moderate their position based upon the input of others. Even in that case, it is likely better to remain silent and let others conclude the obvious instead of calling someone a troll and creating even more mayhem. It is better to humor a troll for too long than to drive away a sincere but misguided user. Remember and apply the principles laid out at w:Wikipedia:Don't bite the newcomers.


We're used to being told it's our fault that men don't listen to us.

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voxpopuluxe
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#9

Post by voxpopuluxe » Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:16 am

In the old days of usenet, "trolling" was the rhetorical equivalent of snipe hunts or other kinds of minor rhetorical hazing: inciting arguments over Kibo or Kirk vs. Picard or Microsoft vs. Apple, etc. Today, at its least harmful, "trolling" is merely a kind of crude, nihilistic, insult humor and at it's most harmful its just a different name for abuse or actual real life targeted harassment. Whole governments engage in "trolling." The word's lost all meaning, IMO.


How deep could the Deep State go if the Deep State could go deep?

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listeme
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#10

Post by listeme » Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:43 am

That's one of my goals here, to have sort of a consensus-dialogue about what we mean here.

I'm pretty comfortable with definitions that are like: "deliberately disruptive behavior", which in a forum would be deliberate disruption of the conversations.

Other harassing kinds of things are, well, harassment. I do conflate them online and I'm working on not doing that.


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Mikedunford
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#11

Post by Mikedunford » Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:53 am

My recollection was that "trolling" was originally a fishing reference, with the bridge-dweller thing a secondary meaning. It was throwing out arguments in bad faith in order to provoke a response from a community.

The presence of intent is key, and that makes it a really hard thing, especially if you're a chronically suspicious son-of-a-bitch.

And it makes it even harder when the community is fixed in beliefs - particularly since being provoked or challenged isn't always a bad thing under those circumstances - fights complacency and all that.


"I don't give a fuck whether we're peers or not."
--Lord Thomas Henry Bingham to Boris Johnson, on being asked whether he would miss being in "the best club in London" if the Law Lords moved from Parliament to a Supreme Court.

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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#12

Post by Mr Pfister » Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:16 am

"... and other generally boorish behavior"

I'm relatively new here. I came specifically because this was the ONLY place I could find actual news of what ended up being the Bumkerville Tragedy.

"Trolls" don't bother me, almost ever anymore. I feel comfortable identifying trollish behavior and tune it out.

One behavior I have seen pretty blatant around here is a few of the long-timers who "go off" on profanity laced tirades when a former female candidate gets mentioned.

The cases I have seen are downright aggressive, and when I've seen others "push back" it seems like the loudest voice wins.

When I compare this behavior to all of the other stuff I see here -that is quite good - it makes it hard to process sometimes.

Kinda like the crazy uncle at the cocktail party who's wearing the lampshade and loud enough to wake the neighbors.

Seriously, this is an area where I believe the long time Fogbowzers can have an effect for the better.

I need to go, he's peeing in the corner - again



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DejaMoo
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#13

Post by DejaMoo » Thu Aug 23, 2018 1:21 pm

Mikedunford wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 10:53 am
My recollection was that "trolling" was originally a fishing reference, with the bridge-dweller thing a secondary meaning. It was throwing out arguments in bad faith in order to provoke a response from a community.
Yeah, here's my comment about that from the other thread:
Being an long-time denizen of USENET (and a one-time winner of the Hook, Line, and Sinker Award for best troll), I prefer to stick to the original definition of troll/trolling: someone who deliberately posts something outrageous in hopes of provoking a reaction - the bigger, the better. That's where the original definition "trolling" comes in - you cast your hook and wait to see who snaps at the bait.

Trolling has been redefined to cover so many kinds of behavior it no longer has any real meaning. It's now indiscriminately applied to anyone/any comment seen as disagreeable. This is too broad. We have to understand the difference between someone deliberately attempting to provoke, and someone whose opinion is provocative (usually because it conflicts with the opinion(s) held by the majority of the group). Sure, take righteous umbrage at deliberate attempts to stir up trouble, but don't automatically label people as trolls 'cuz their opinions aren't shared by the group. Nor should they be dismissed as trolls simply for expressing those views.
There was a guy on a forum I've been part of for decades who didn't seem to be deliberately trolling, but he was definitely annoying. He didn't attack, he was just...very, very, very persistent. We'd be discussing a topic, he'd reply to a contributor, and the contributor would reply back. But then this guy just wouldn't let it go. He'd keep finding something to focus on and bring back, to the point where that contributor would tell him, Why not just let it go? But he wouldn't. Hell, months could go by, the topic long lapsed, and he'd suddenly out of the blue resurrect it with another message aimed at that same contributor. He was the internet equivalent of a fly.

Since he wasn't being offensive and he wasn't attacking, we let him participate for years and years, and watched more or less helplessly as his persistent focus on particular posters drove them off the forum. He even drove off David Mikkelson (Snopes) - again, not from being nasty, just from never leaving him alone.

This guy contributed very little positive to the forum. Nearly all of his time was spent picking a particular person and just making them his personal fixation. So he was finally banished, not for being nasty, but just for being overwhelmingly annoying.



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MN-Skeptic
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#14

Post by MN-Skeptic » Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:03 pm

But it is fun to troll over at Breitbart.


MAGA - Morons Are Governing America

Hercule Parrot
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#15

Post by Hercule Parrot » Thu Aug 23, 2018 3:42 pm

DejaMoo wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 1:21 pm
There was a guy on a forum I've been part of for decades who didn't seem to be deliberately trolling, but he was definitely annoying. He didn't attack, he was just...very, very, very persistent. We'd be discussing a topic, he'd reply to a contributor, and the contributor would reply back. But then this guy just wouldn't let it go. He'd keep finding something to focus on and bring back, to the point where that contributor would tell him, Why not just let it go? But he wouldn't. Hell, months could go by, the topic long lapsed, and he'd suddenly out of the blue resurrect it with another message aimed at that same contributor. He was the internet equivalent of a fly.
My impression across many boards and forums is that people often don't use the available "ignore" options. As a mod elsewhere I would often suggest this to an aggrieved user, but the advice was rarely followed. They were invested in the squabble, and ignoring felt like "losing". If phpBB will generate an anonymised or aggregated report, it would be interesting to see how widely we use it here. I'll speculate that >90% of us have nobody blocked at all.

My view is that if you think someone's a troll, a troublemaker or whatever, if their comments usually vex and irritate you, then just pop into User Control Panel and add them to the Foes list for a week or two. They don't know you've done it, it's simple, discreet and easily reversible. But I imagine it will be the same here as on other boards - the real desired outcome is often to stop the other from expressing their view at all. Perhaps it's human nature to believe that other people need more diversity and challenge to broaden their minds, but we ourselves are fully-rounded and only need to not be pestered by idiots.

Anyhoo, Fogbow is by far the best current affairs & politics board I've ever participated in. We are an astonishing, warm and wise community, thanks in large to Foggy and the Founders (surely a great band name btw).



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listeme
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#16

Post by listeme » Thu Aug 23, 2018 3:49 pm

My view is that if you think someone's a troll, a troublemaker or whatever, if their comments usually vex and irritate you, then just pop into User Control Panel and add them to the Foes list for a week or two. They don't know you've done it, it's simple, discreet and easily reversible.
I do this. One thing that bugs me is that this software here still lets your foe quote you, which notifies you, and if you have a clueless foe (which is often the case when it's just a personality clash) it can keep you on simmer when they keep replying to stuff you say.

But yes, ignore is a great tool and people should use it :mrgreen:


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Sugar Magnolia
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#17

Post by Sugar Magnolia » Thu Aug 23, 2018 4:38 pm

listeme wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 3:49 pm

But yes, ignore is a great tool and people should use it :mrgreen:
I do! I do!
It keeps me from screaming "SHUT UP! Shuuuuuuut uuuuuuup! Nobody fucking cares!!!!!" about 20 times a day.



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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#18

Post by MN-Skeptic » Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:06 pm

Sugar Magnolia wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 4:38 pm
listeme wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 3:49 pm

But yes, ignore is a great tool and people should use it :mrgreen:
I do! I do!
It keeps me from screaming "SHUT UP! Shuuuuuuut uuuuuuup! Nobody fucking cares!!!!!" about 20 times a day.
:yeah:


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MsDaisy
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#19

Post by MsDaisy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:34 pm

Trolls purposefully spread misinformation and outright lies, and their personal reasons for doing so are as vast as their numbers. We know what they are when we see them and they’re very easy to spot, nothing but the same old tired "Lock Her Up" BS talking points. But what do we call the opposite of a Troll, someone who spreads verifiable truth with links to counter the Trolls and their baseless lies? Elves, Fairies? “Elfin Fairy Fact Finders” or EFFFs? :lol: Shouldn't we come up with a proper name for all those good folks trolling trolls with truth?


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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#20

Post by Whatever4 » Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:30 pm

MsDaisy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:34 pm
Trolls purposefully spread misinformation and outright lies, and their personal reasons for doing so are as vast as their numbers. We know what they are when we see them and they’re very easy to spot, nothing but the same old tired "Lock Her Up" BS talking points. But what do we call the opposite of a Troll, someone who spreads verifiable truth with links to counter the Trolls and their baseless lies? Elves, Fairies? “Elfin Fairy Fact Finders” or EFFFs? :lol: Shouldn't we come up with a proper name for all those good folks trolling trolls with truth?
Fogbowers.


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MsDaisy
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#21

Post by MsDaisy » Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:19 pm

Whatever4 wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:30 pm
MsDaisy wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:34 pm
Trolls purposefully spread misinformation and outright lies, and their personal reasons for doing so are as vast as their numbers. We know what they are when we see them and they’re very easy to spot, nothing but the same old tired "Lock Her Up" BS talking points. But what do we call the opposite of a Troll, someone who spreads verifiable truth with links to counter the Trolls and their baseless lies? Elves, Fairies? “Elfin Fairy Fact Finders” or EFFFs? :lol: Shouldn't we come up with a proper name for all those good folks trolling trolls with truth?
Fogbowers.
:yeah: :grouphug: :mbounce:


Birfers are toast

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Piskey
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#22

Post by Piskey » Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:47 pm

Surely posting on the Fogbow forum is not trolling . Isn't trolling rather more adventurous than this? For me trolling is when one takes true facts, gives them a snarky twist and confronts the other side with them on their own ground.
The Twitter posters on #oregonstandoff are trolls for good as are many who post in the OLive commentariat. The snacktivist hordes who mocked the poots with memes and sackloads of sex toys also deluged them with facts. They still do.
Many of the people here do that as well as posting here



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bob
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#23

Post by bob » Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:23 pm

Piskey wrote:
Thu Aug 23, 2018 9:47 pm
Surely posting on the Fogbow forum is not trolling . Isn't trolling rather more adventurous than this? For me trolling is when one takes true facts, gives them a snarky twist and confronts the other side with them on their own ground.
I would suggest that some posters here believe that some posters here are engaging in exactly the behavior you describe.

The more nuanced discussion is about the best methods (within Foogy's rules, of course) on how to address such conduct.


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boots
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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#24

Post by boots » Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:44 pm

there can be benevolent trolling...

Some people, after all, have it coming to them.



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Re: Trolls and Trolling

#25

Post by AndyinPA » Fri Aug 24, 2018 3:19 pm

I've only been around a little more than a year, but I've not seen a lot of trolling here. When I do see it or someone just getting very argumentative, I tend to just ignore it. I know I can make someone a foe, but I've never bothered. Engagement is often just encouragement.



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