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It's Time to fight Back- How To Identify A Troll

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posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 10:36 AM
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a reply to: SoulSurfer

While I agree that trolling and bullying (synonymous things) are a problem, if you're truly into the psychological aspect of it all, you'll also agree that bullying isn't the root cause of someone committing suicide over bullying, but that it's an emotional problem with the bullied individual that allows them to take such an extreme reaction.

I'm not dismissing the bully from the equation at all, but while I think we should take a strong stance against trolling/bullying online, I also think that parents and those of us who care about other individuals need to be doing what we can to help those who would take extreme actions in response to bullying. If we can make a stronger society who can withstand the bullying, that does much more to quell bullies than forums banning them or deleting their posts. What we need to do is build up the strength in our own spines so that we can stand tall against trolls, not have someone wrap a corset around us and pull the strings for us.

And then what about those who seem to suffer from O.D.D. more than are actually being trolls? It seems to me that many who argue just to argue aren't necessarily trolls, but that they suffer from a disorder that makes them defiant to opinions and information without logic or reason.

Or the people who actually believe in wrong information--either through ignorance or apathy--and are arguing from the heart even though there is no real factual basis?

My point is that I think that you are applying the term "troll" in a way that might cause many people to accuse others of the activity when it is not warranted. If we spend enough time on any forum, we'll be able to discern actual debate from those just trolling to troll. Falling victim to the troll is something that everyone will do from time to time--I know that that I've done it recently--but that doesn't mean that everyone who argues with you, even if they cite links and information you consider to be faulty, is a troll.

I know that I have been accused of being a troll a few times, and it's usually by the same people who just don't like either the information to which I'm linking or the opinion that I have on a topic--and especially if I do call them out for using a thought process that negates any logic and adheres only to ideology. But, sadly, that is expected in today's debate climate, where if you disagree with someone, you're automatically an enemy in everything that you say or do. It's honestly more of a burden than an enjoyment to get on ATS sometimes, but I keep coming back because I can sift through the BS and find the information on here that I can't find many other places.




posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 11:19 AM
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What can you tell us about Media Matters' troll brigade?



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 12:16 PM
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a reply to: Prezbo369




You still seem like you consider trolls to be anyone that disagrees with you, as do a lot of people in this thread.

You're not going to be able to shut down criticism, you're gonna have to develop thicker skin or just deal with it. Otherwise you're gonna have a hard time.


My focus is mostly on character assassination. I actually value constructive criticism. The kind of criticism where you can learn from. To sum up the post you quoted me from in a more.. simplistic way, if we criticize someone who is wrong, why not do it in the way where that person can actually learn something without resorting to killing off their character, or humiliating them through insults?

I mean its basically high school all over again, and I would think we are all grown adults in this thread, and very much capable of using intellect not insults, to correct someone.

To sum it up in a single sentence:

"Give constructive criticism in an educated manner, without resorting to being an *snip* hole."

Because words do hurt, and we should be responsible with the things we say to another person. Especially someone you do not know. That is how you know if the person is decent with their morals or not.

Compassion and understanding goes farther than brute force. (that is what Im trying to explain, )

The reason why, is because you don't know what that person went through either, during the day, or through his life. Some people are ticking time bombs (thats an allegory, just in case). Their mind gets cluttered with the stress they picked up. But then comes someone and says something that triggers that person "as the last drop". In many cases, violence erupts. (Other cases results in suicide)


I did some study on psychology with regards to what makes a person explode in rage. When someone is within rage, they are not conscious. Some suffer black outs and don't even remember what they did during the rage. That is where the term "blinded with rage" comes from. It usually occurs when someone has suffered and suppressed their own stress for a long time without finding an outlet to let it lose. (I use my guitar and music as my outlet. Those who conquered rage, usually turn out to become artists.)


With regards to constructive criticism, you can be *snip*holish with friends who know you did not mean it as an insult but rather correction. But it is a different ball game with someone you do not know.

I wanted to clarify one more thing, and wanted to extend an apology, with regards to this quote of mine:




Can any reasonable person, NOT agree with everything I just said? If there is a disagreement, then know, that there is a troll in the mists.


I want to correct myself and rephrase this, because I think this is where i went on the wrong end. What I meant, to say was, that if there is disagreement with regards to the topic, and the response was not serious nor constructive, then there is a troll in the mists.

(In a sense you helped me correct myself on this one. Luckily, the error did not have much impact on the overall message. I wrote the topic down in under two hours, so I was speed typing and failed to go back to proof read. )

Below is a good example of constructive criticism:

@Slapmonkey im using you as an example because you made some good points, and it deserves the ranking of constructive criticism, because it was educational at the same time. This was a very put together post. I may not agree with all of it, but I agree with some. I learned something from this post.
That is what constructive criticism is.






While I agree that trolling and bullying (synonymous things) are a problem, if you're truly into the psychological aspect of it all, you'll also agree that bullying isn't the root cause of someone committing suicide over bullying, but that it's an emotional problem with the bullied individual that allows them to take such an extreme reaction.

I'm not dismissing the bully from the equation at all, but while I think we should take a strong stance against trolling/bullying online, I also think that parents and those of us who care about other individuals need to be doing what we can to help those who would take extreme actions in response to bullying. If we can make a stronger society who can withstand the bullying, that does much more to quell bullies than forums banning them or deleting their posts. What we need to do is build up the strength in our own spines so that we can stand tall against trolls, not have someone wrap a corset around us and pull the strings for us.

And then what about those who seem to suffer from O.D.D. more than are actually being trolls? It seems to me that many who argue just to argue aren't necessarily trolls, but that they suffer from a disorder that makes them defiant to opinions and information without logic or reason.

Or the people who actually believe in wrong information--either through ignorance or apathy--and are arguing from the heart even though there is no real factual basis?

My point is that I think that you are applying the term "troll" in a way that might cause many people to accuse others of the activity when it is not warranted. If we spend enough time on any forum, we'll be able to discern actual debate from those just trolling to troll. Falling victim to the troll is something that everyone will do from time to time--I know that that I've done it recently--but that doesn't mean that everyone who argues with you, even if they cite links and information you consider to be faulty, is a troll.

I know that I have been accused of being a troll a few times, and it's usually by the same people who just don't like either the information to which I'm linking or the opinion that I have on a topic--and especially if I do call them out for using a thought process that negates any logic and adheres only to ideology. But, sadly, that is expected in today's debate climate, where if you disagree with someone, you're automatically an enemy in everything that you say or do. It's honestly more of a burden than an enjoyment to get on ATS sometimes, but I keep coming back because I can sift through the BS and find the information on here that I can't find many other places.


(I hope I clarified and fixed my error)

@slapmonkey and Iamtat, ill respond to your posts later. Gonna rest my fingers a bit.





edit on st2015000000Mondayst000000Mon, 21 Dec 2015 12:20:43 -0600fAmerica/ChicagoMon, 21 Dec 2015 12:20:43 -0600 by SoulSurfer because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 01:06 PM
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a reply to: SoulSurfer

No problem, SoulSurfer..and no hurry.
As per my last question, and in the quest to 'Know Thy Enemy'...perhaps you can tell us something about the infrastructure, operations, recruitment, and logistics of these organizations that hire and utilize armies of paid trolls.

I, personally, would like to know what we're all up against...and it appears you not only possess an intimate knowledge of how they operate, but are graciously willing to inform us.

edit on 21-12-2015 by IAMTAT because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:00 PM
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originally posted by: SoulSurfer
a reply to: Prezbo369

My focus is mostly on character assassination. I actually value constructive criticism. The kind of criticism where you can learn from. To sum up the post you quoted me from in a more.. simplistic way, if we criticize someone who is wrong, why not do it in the way where that person can actually learn something without resorting to killing off their character, or humiliating them through insults?


Not everything people say requires or even deserves 'constructive criticism'. For example; when someone claims that there are government agents working on a public forum as trolls, it can and should be dismissed as stupid at the very least.


I mean its basically high school all over again, and I would think we are all grown adults in this thread, and very much capable of using intellect not insults, to correct someone.


Your passive aggressive comments in this post (that you've since edited out....) towards me shows that you have no interest in the above, you're just upset that people dispute your claims and do not believe everything you say. Basically everything you've said in this thread has been hypocritical.


I did some study on psychology with regards to what makes a person explode in rage. When someone is within rage, they are not conscious. Some suffer black outs and don't even remember what they did during the rage. That is where the term "blinded with rage" comes from. It usually occurs when someone has suffered and suppressed their own stress for a long time without finding an outlet to let it lose. (I use my guitar and music as my outlet. Those who conquered rage, usually turn out to become artists.)


I guess you like to consider yourself an artist then? you must've been pretty angry before you edited your post....



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:09 PM
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originally posted by: SoulSurfer
@slapmonkey and Iamtat, ill respond to your posts later. Gonna rest my fingers a bit.


Sounds good...glad you found my post to at least be "very put together," even though it was written on the fly


Thanks for taking the time to respond, regardless. And don't beat yourself up over your past, as that is something that you cannot change--instead, do what you're doing and learn from it and change for the better accordingly. You're on the right path.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:22 PM
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Are you a closeted passive homosexual? Because I'm not. So if you were to target me because you feel lost, left behind, and you are afraid of me as competition where i failed to perceive this was even there , uhh im not. Now if you were hurt by a girl in your past as what I really suspect, and your perspective is so damaged as to have her permanently burned into your being, bro to where you are pretending to be her, im sorry but i had a friend like that and i plain left. Im get that alot from people who feel lost, left behind, and whatever else it might be because they *oh my GOD this gets frustrating!!!* mistake my vanity for being passive gay for chrissakes. They mistake any outgoing temparament as "dominant" or the type that would geez, "hurt" them gently...Gentle depressive complicated temparaments i dont get. People who impress pain onto their psyche because they were lost and lonely and then keep projecting it onto others i don't get. When i see it, i bug out because it just sits there. If i wanted a dominatrix id see a pro. Gentle shadings of psychological interaction where things are just...sad...are not my deal. If i speak, as a male, and all you see and hear are this "her" because youre soft and passive, bro. you get mixed up way to easily, or are like i said an ephemeral shade of a person just being,,,complicated? Misplacing your archetypes? I dunno. Way. Too. Much. Stuff.
edit on 21-12-2015 by breakingbs because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:30 PM
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originally posted by: Prezbo369
Not everything people say requires or even deserves 'constructive criticism'. For example; when someone claims that there are government agents working on a public forum as trolls, it can and should be dismissed as stupid at the very least.


Why? While I can't prove govt-funded, professional trolling is a real thing, I'm also intelligent enough to know that (a) it's a relatively easy way for government propagandists to reach the masses and (b) that the absence of evidence is not the same as evidence of nothing.

It would be very easy for the gov't to get people to troll on their behalf. Hell, the way people treat political ideology like religion, they could probably coerce people to do it for free without them even realizing that they're doing it.

My point being, you say that it "should be dismissed as stupid at the very least," and I say that I'll gladly dismiss it if you can show me the rationale behind why you would assume that it is a stupid notion. I was in the military and I currently hold a federal job--gov't-backed trolling seems absolutely plausible to me from my observations and experiences.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:38 PM
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*Pst* Hey guys...I think I found one, it looks legit too:






posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:39 PM
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a reply to: SlapMonkey

I actually agree that as a concept it could be "out there." I don't see any problem with that. Its sometimes it gets bungled up in psychosis or "i dunno."


edit on 21-12-2015 by breakingbs because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 02:44 PM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey

Why? While I can't prove govt-funded, professional trolling is a real thing, I'm also intelligent enough to know that (a) it's a relatively easy way for government propagandists to reach the masses and (b) that the absence of evidence is not the same as evidence of nothing.


I cant prove that you're not a purple leprechaun, but i'm pretty certain you're not. To think that the government or anyone else has employed full time staff to merely argue with people on a public forum is the height of hubris. You're/we're not that important, no one cares... get over yourselves...

And FYI the Sagan quote you included in your post is a bit of a fallacy, the absence of evidence does at the very very least suggest evidence of absence.


It would be very easy for the gov't to get people to troll on their behalf. Hell, the way people treat political ideology like religion, they could probably coerce people to do it for free without them even realizing that they're doing it.


Then you think maybe religions also do this?...


My point being, you say that it "should be dismissed as stupid at the very least," and I say that I'll gladly dismiss it if you can show me the rationale behind why you would assume that it is a stupid notion. I was in the military and I currently hold a federal job--gov't-backed trolling seems absolutely plausible to me from my observations and experiences.


Well if you've been in the military.....you must be an authority!

See above
edit on 21-12-2015 by Prezbo369 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:03 PM
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a reply to: Prezbo369

Right, but I don't have a history of doing things that make the possibility of me being a purple leprechaun a plausibility.

And the Sagan quote is not a fallacy--it means that just because we haven't discovered something doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

As for religions, no, I don't think religions troll people as a whole, but I wouldn't doubt that religious organizations like Answers in Genesis do it.

Your sarcasm about me holding a government job for a combined total of nearly a decade does nothing to enhance your appearance of logic...nor did I ever claim to be an authority, just that I have enough experience with how the government conducts business to say that I see it using internet trolls as something that it could do.

And I never claimed that gov't internet trolls do exist, just that I see it as easily possible. You're are the one pretending to have an authoritative answer on the subject, not me.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:17 PM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey
a reply to: Prezbo369
Right, but I don't have a history of doing things that make the possibility of me being a purple leprechaun a plausibility.


How do I know? Why you you assume I have any knowledge of your 'history of doing things'?

Apparently Leprechauns are magical...


And the Sagan quote is not a fallacy--it means that just because we haven't discovered something doesn't mean it doesn't exist.


It's a bit of a fallacy, a lack of evidence suggests there is none.



As for religions, no, I don't think religions troll people as a whole, but I wouldn't doubt that religious organizations like Answers in Genesis do it.


Right....you have no problem with the claims that governments do it, but not religions? claims of magic and resurrecting zombies is fine but people arguing on the web?.....agents!...


Your sarcasm about me holding a government job for a combined total of nearly a decade does nothing to enhance your appearance of logic...nor did I ever claim to be an authority, just that I have enough experience with how the government conducts business to say that I see it using internet trolls as something that it could do.


Whatever you claim your employed history is, it has no relevance in an online debate/discussion. If you have to wheel out such apparent details in order to bolster your position it merely demonstrates how weak it is to begin with.


And I never claimed that gov't internet trolls do exist, just that I see it as easily possible. You're are the one pretending to have an authoritative answer on the subject, not me.


I've said it's a stupid claim and have explained why, one made by the OP as he/she doesn't seem to be able to handle criticism. If you don't think this is the case then you're encouraging the OPs irrationality IMO.

edit on 21-12-2015 by Prezbo369 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:19 PM
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a reply to: SlapMonkey I spent years in UK senior Civil service I would bet all my money that spooks are on ATS, pretty crap governmental organization to ignore an obvious free source of information and avenue for propaganda lol
I'm surprised anyone actually doubts that.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: Prezbo369




For example; when someone claims that there are government agents working on a public forum as trolls, it can and should be dismissed as stupid at the very least.


and this is where we disagree, because I know for a fact otherwise. So, right here, right now, we have a problem. Because your reality does not align with mine. So, am I insane to make such a claim? Am I stupid to make a claim?

I don't know, but if I myself once possessed an army of trolls. Is it really far-fetch for the government to do the same?

The fact that one person did this, the person you are talking to, means that anyone else can do the same thing. So, to say that the government does the same thing only on a paid level, is not indeed, stupid, and should not be dismissed. So far, you did not provide constructive criticism as to why you disagree.

basically, you just said "It should be dismissed as stupid because-... and that's that". Not exactly a convincing argument.

Maybe I should join the dark side, I hear the pay is good. This was sarcasm. Mostly expressing my own annoyance because I feel like I wasted time and energy to respond to you.

*subliminal* Guised* To those with eyes that see between the lines, know what I mean.
edit on st2015000000Mondayst000000Mon, 21 Dec 2015 15:29:45 -0600fAmerica/ChicagoMon, 21 Dec 2015 15:29:45 -0600 by SoulSurfer because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: SoulSurfer

Great thread, but I think the people who are the real problem are the ones who aren't professional trolls but the ones who pick up and mimic trollish behavior to push their own agendas, but when you engage them in different topics they are fine to talk to.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 03:30 PM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom

thats pretty sweet


wow and fer 100 bones.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 04:02 PM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: SoulSurfer

Great thread, but I think the people who are the real problem are the ones who aren't professional trolls but the ones who pick up and mimic trollish behavior to push their own agendas, but when you engage them in different topics they are fine to talk to.


That is very true and a very good point. Even I still have some traces of this behavior, (more like habit). if you trace the root cause as to why people behave the way they do, television, video games, social programmings/engineering , music etc..., (that list is a very long one. ), it has become an epidemic, to the point where people are mimicking this behavior and transmitting it unto others. And sadly, I am guilty of creating many through the forum I co-owned, (and yea I just cursed at myself.) I helped assist in the spreading of that virus. (Doesn't sit well when one realizes they helped aid in some way what they now fight. Kinda like a sickening feeling sitting inside your belly. That is how I feel.)


And to be honest? It is only gonna get worse. The more memes there are, the more we will see of this. I think you yourself noticed quite a few oddities over the years here at ats. ( No, they were not just your imagination. You, most likely saw correctly. )

I don't think that wave of madness can be stopped by force, it cant be stopped by force. But the cure has to begin with us, a choice to help educate people on what is going on. To become aware, because fighting against it, is futile at best. You can only cure it by becoming aware of it, and having others become aware of it.

It is a real problem, but we also must learn to discern carefully here, as some posters suggested with regards to being accused when they were not, because I am sure, with many members here on ats, we can arrive at a strategy based off careful study and observation, to look past those who mimic k vs those who actually have the full on intention on trolling.

But that, is gonna take a lot of work. Many of you will have to study psychology, if you wish to combat this problem effectively.
edit on st2015000000Mondayst000000Mon, 21 Dec 2015 16:05:16 -0600fAmerica/ChicagoMon, 21 Dec 2015 16:05:16 -0600 by SoulSurfer because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 04:04 PM
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a reply to: SoulSurfer

You know for a fact......you had an army if trolls.....

You're making my point for me, you're spouting some of the most stupid and ridiculous nonsense in an effort to demonstrate that your previous ridiculous and stupid claims are true....

And like I said, not every claim requires or deserves constructive criticism.



posted on Dec, 21 2015 @ 04:07 PM
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originally posted by: Prezbo369
a reply to: SoulSurfer

You know for a fact......you had an army if trolls.....

You're making my point for me, you're spouting some of the most stupid and ridiculous nonsense in an effort to demonstrate that your previous ridiculous and stupid claims are true....

And like I said, not every claim requires or deserves constructive criticism.


Well, you are entitled to your opinion. You will not change my mind on what I know to be true. And I will continue to inform people on what I know, with or without your opinion. I accept that YOU see it as ridiculous. But it is not ridiculous to me.

Let bygones be bygones. I think, we have nothing left to say. So i bid you a good day.



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