How to deal with flaming.

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posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 04:14 PM
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I've been studying this same issue (my poor prof is going nuts with my different studies in cyberspace) and can recommend the Wikipedia article on internet trolling:
en.wikipedia.org...

For those of you who want the "advanced session" after reading and exploring the links in that excellent article, the papers cited at the bottom (external links section) are definately recommended reading. Some of them are academic, but the Campbell page is pretty much straighforward and written in language that everyone can understand:
members.aol.com...

(if anyone has any specific questions for me, please U2U me since I skip all over the board and may miss some responses here.)




posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 04:17 PM
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I was going to reply to the original thread, but by the time I got to it, it was a mess. Not any one persons fault.

But I'd like to go ahead and post what I originally intended.

The Preview option. Some forums I’ve visited force you to Preview before posting. I preview 99% of my posts. While I don’t know if scripting this is difficult, I think it would be helpful. No, it won’t stop people bent on posting negative comments, but it will hopefully slow them down a bit.

I realize I’m not well known here. I don’t post often. I usually don’t post unless I feel I have something very specific to offer. I am not here for points. But if I do post something over 2 sentences long, I write it in MS Word first.

Yes, I really do that. My spelling is atrocious, and my grammar skills are truly atrocious.

I do this also because this allows me to see what I am typing in a nice big _ And in using this format to type large posts, I’ve caught myself from making subtle, inadvertent attacks on other people. Such negativity in a post shows up pretty well in a large _

So, what about forcing people to Preview their posts? And for those that have the patience, I’d suggest using another program to begin and check a post, before pasting it into the reply window and clicking Preview.

On the other hand, if your really bent on hitting someone else, walking away for 5 minutes might be the best way to avoid attacking them.

Just my 2 cents


-VW


[edit on 2-4-2005 by VisionWithin]



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 04:20 PM
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Great links byrd.
Looks like I will have to change my title.



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 04:20 PM
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Byrd's second link answers the posters original question, succinctly I might add.



You may think, "Surely there is something I can write that will change them." But a true troll can not be changed by mere words.


So one of the key hallmarks of a troll is their lack of response to reason and fact. Another is their sadistic attitude towards their fellow 'digital abstractions', they revel in the suffering/anger they produce with their words.



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 04:29 PM
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Originally posted by SomewhereinBetween
I also ask alien: what actions constitute trolling?


Byrd gave a good insight into a possible answer to that question, with the links she provided.

...but ultimately the decision of what constitutes 'trolling' or 'flaming' on this site rests with the Staff of this site. The definitions of it can and will vary from person to person and even from day to day...as part of anyones humanity is the inability to be completely impartial or completely consistant 100% of the time. People who may 'troll' or 'flame' perhaps should be hopefully whatever Mod/SuperMod/Admin online at the time isn't having a bad day...


Personally, if I think its trolling or flaming, then I will judge it as such and act accordingly. Thats the role I have as a SuperMod here on ATS. Thats not a 'statement of power' or anything...just pointing out a fact.



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 06:42 PM
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I replied on the original thread with the following:


I've been a member here a while. Used to post often. However, I see what happens when people post. It turns into a slugfest.

I'm a moderator on another board (much smaller than ATS). I know that the mods have a life and appreciate it when someone gives them a "heads up" on a problem post or thread.

Perhaps the answer to the problem is for members like me to be diligent in giving the mods a heads up. Maybe this will stop the slugfests.


I've searched and searched, but don't know how to report a poster to a mod (I thought I used to, but that link seems to have disappeared
)

I'm unsure if the "preview post" option will work. If someone is heated up making the post, taking 2 seconds to preview probably won't help.

My suggestion would be, if you are a poster with less than 100 posts, and you have been reported, a warn should be applied but that warn includes a mod que (review) of each of your further posts for a period of time.

It saddens me that ATS has changed so much in the past few months. I've always come here for up to date news and open views on a variety of subjects. I've just pressed "ignore poster" for the first time ever... but I don't think it will help in the end. There will be people that reply to the topic.

I remember a bit ago when SkepticOverlord posted a black band on ATS and proclaimed that it was sad days for ATS. I thought the "problem" would be taken care of. Today I see truly ugly and hateful posts about the Holy Father and another about Jesus being a homosexual. I'm not even Catholic, but I know my manners


I'm just curious, because I wasn't here. On 9/11, were there posters here screaming that those that died on that day deserved everything they got? It seems that posters no longer know what the word "decency" means on this day.



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 07:01 PM
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Originally posted by sosuemetooI've searched and searched, but don't know how to report a poster to a mod (I thought I used to, but that link seems to have disappeared
)


Good point, it would probably help with a button, say down with the way above and ignore buttons, where we could instantly report an offensive post.


Originally posted by sosuemetooToday I see truly ugly and hateful posts about the Holy Father and another about Jesus being a homosexual. I'm not even Catholic, but I know my manners [...] It seems that posters no longer know what the word "decency" means on this day.


This is a problem. You see, what is offensive to you is cool with me (and quite likely the other way). I can't se any problem with people talking about Jesus being a homosexual if they have evidence to suggest he was. I like both Jesus and homosexuals (even if I'm a straight agnostic), so I don't se a problem with the combination.

PLEASE; lets NOT start a discussion about the pope or Jesus. This is only an example showing that we view things very differently, and we need to keep the board in a way that can make us BOTH have a good time and a good discussion here.







:



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 08:54 PM
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Originally posted by Valhall
The ignore button should be viewed as your own
personal "HappyPill".


Yep, it's great for those people that respond to any topic, no matter what it is, with the same old bashing.

Original post : "Aren't the flowers lovely this time of year?"
Reply : "At least until they're smashed under the evil heels of (insert your favorite bashee here)"

After seeing that kind of response four or five times with no balancing intelligent posts, it's time for *ignore*
My only problem is, some days 10 names on "ignore" isn't enough

Luckily, usually a few have been banned and I can clear them out.



[edit on 4/2/2005 by eaglewingz]



posted on Apr, 2 2005 @ 09:11 PM
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Originally posted by gekko
This is a problem. You see, what is offensive to you is cool with me (and quite likely the other way). I can't se any problem with people talking about Jesus being a homosexual if they have evidence to suggest he was. I like both Jesus and homosexuals (even if I'm a straight agnostic), so I don't se a problem with the combination.


Absolutely! I respect your opinion and your right to have it. My point was that some (that have just registered) are posting just to flame and get the longtime members in an uproar. They see the news, they see this as an opportunity to divide people.

The forum that I moderate (again, not as long standing and as large as ATS) believes that it is a "community" where we respect one another's beliefs. We come from all walks of life and believe in the right to say what we believe. I know the mods here are much more experienced as I am. After a year, I can almost peg a problem poster with their 1st or 2nd post. Many times I've learned by the "teaching" of the mods on this site and taken it to the one that I moderate.

I believe in democracy, truly. I know the new rules for chat require that you have 200 posts. After a year, I have not attained that, even though I log in each day. I respect and approve that decision. I would also respect a decision for a mod que or ban for anyone under 200 posts, if they are reported. I honestly believe that ATS needs to stand by their long standing registered members and those who have posted multiple times.

In conclusion, I believe you should have to prove yourself before being a respected member of this forum. It should be a "given" because ATS is one of the most respected forums for up to date news and information on the internet.



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 07:41 AM
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Originally posted by SomewhereinBetween
What I read from the originating post and others is a distinct intolerance for the stating of any opinion that is not pro-Christian at any time. The language used to mark anti-Christian views is that it is hateful, which obviously sends the message that to have an opposing view is to be harbouring hate and there can therefore be no truth to the opposing view since it is couched in words of malice.


Actually, you kind of missed the point of the original post, though I admit it did get lost by the end. However it was clearly presented from the start that the Pope threads were used as an example of the increasing problem, but not where the problem actually lay. It had nothing to do with oppossing views, it had to do with people who just respond to posts with hate.

I will clarify this with the following criteria. Statements that do not add to the discussion, do not address the discussion, and simply state a nasty sentiment of something/someone that will obviously offend a large number of people. The types of things that any decent person should know are out of line, but in fact may be appropriate on a thread specifically intended to express that sentiment. Just not spewed at every opportunity a word is mentioned in any thread that results in derailing the topic.

The Pope threads were used as an example, because there was a proliferation of them that day. True, not everyone likes the Pope and it is certainly no secret that many do not care for religion at all. So it would be expected that discussions would include expressing these views and some wild conspiracies about him. But a line such as "may he rot in hell" truly adds nothing to the discussion, and is showing a total disregard towards not just the views of many members but their core beliefs. It is not necesarry. This goes on in all topics and some of us honestly see it as escalating.

Let me give another example, politics. There are people running all over the board who obviously are not happy with the current President in the US. Fine, we get it. Does one need to state that Bush is an idiot in every single thread that remotely references the government and even some that don't? I think not, and these types of actions usually derail the thread. Is it too much to expect that intelligent debate can occur without people deliberately throwing a thread into the gutter with inane statements that add nothing to the discussion and are offensive to many members? Apparently many members feel their right to express themselves has no boundaries, whether it is for the sake of common decency or keeping the thread on topic. Personally I feel these types of things are dragging many threads these days down to a level of immaturity that takes away from the board, and I am obviously not alone in these sentiments.

The links Byrd posted are excellent. I find it interesting that with so many people saying to just ignore trolls, that the article actually addresses when trolls are ignored completely they step up their attack in their attempt to obtain the attention they crave. HOW to address them is detailed very well in the article, and I am certainly going to implement some of these methods in the future. (Though there is a type of "troll alert" suggested response recommended that I think does not work with ATS because if used, it would be considered a one-liner no-no, and over time would probably be classified as spamming.)

So, in conclusion I acknowledge that troll behavior is an integral part of being on a discussion board, and as the board grows, the troll behavior is going to increase. It's just that I've never seen ignoring a problem as an effective solution to anything. I also don't think that reporting every instance of troll behavior to the Mods is either realistic or effective, the board is too big for that at this point.

So, I encourage everyone to read with great attention to detail the links posted by Byrd and attempt to come up with effective, benign, nicey nice statements that will diffuse trolls on the spot without encouraging them, then move on with the discussion being extremely careful not to engage the troll beyond that point, at least that is what I shall do for now.



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 08:35 AM
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Relentless
I was one of a few who expressed my wishes for poetic justice re: the pope. I think it's a valid desire to see people hoisted on their own petards - and I don't think it's the better part of valor to single my beliefs out as less valid than those of Catholicism. The pope is just an example, I know, but there have been many who have come out strongly against my statement, and the statement of others along similar lines, and their beliefs are wholly to blame to for their antagonism, likewise with my antagonism.

Certainly it is offensive to some, but so are pictures of birth defects caused by radiation - but they must be shown. Catholicism is in many ways offensive to me, because of the use of the concept of 'Truth' when marketting what amounts to historical fiction.

Somebody has to stand up and say "This man you call great was also a hypocrite, and should be remembered honestly for his accomplishments and failures both." He was generally a man of peace, but he also had a legacy of spreading ignorance that is not lost on those who spent time following his career.

While it is fair to say the line "may he burn in hell" doesn't add any new factual material to the discussion, neither does half the material, no, three quarters of the material on ATS, if you consider personal sentiment worthless. Remember, the line at the top of the submission form says, "Do not simply post news articles..please post..your opinion.."

I fail to see how saying "X is bad." is any less noble and expected and justified than saying "X is good."

Those are my thoughts on the issue...



[edit on 3-4-2005 by WyrdeOne]



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 08:48 AM
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Originally posted by WyrdeOne
Relentless
and I don't think it's the better part of valor to single my beliefs out as less valid than those of Catholicism.
[edit on 3-4-2005 by WyrdeOne]


For the last time! I am not singling out anyone's beliefs or opinions.

There is a big difference between that and useless hateful comments. I can distinguish that, can't you? Geez!



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 08:56 AM
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Never mind

[edit on 4/3/05 by LadyV]



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:03 AM
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Originally posted by Relentless
There is a big difference between that and useless hateful comments. I can distinguish that, can't you? Geez!


I was responding to a comment you made directly about a post that bore a resemblance to my own. Did you not reference that post? I'm pretty sure you did.

Now, I don't go around being hateful all day, so I think I'm exempt from the troll label, but I still think there's a very common misperception. People get labeled as hateful too easily in some cases. Hate speech has relatively clear definitions.



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:03 AM
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Originally posted by Relentless
I can distinguish that, can't you? Geez!


PLEASE; let's NOT go peronal all over again here!





















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[edit on 3/4/05 by gekko]



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:05 AM
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Originally posted by gekko

PLEASE; let's NOT go peronal all over again here!



But, that's all some of us know.:bash:



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:12 AM
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From Byrds last link.

members.aol.com...

When you suspect that somebody is a troll, you might try responding with a polite, mild message to see if it's just somebody in a bad mood. [...] If you ignore their bluster and respond in a pleasant manner, they usually calm down.

However, if the person persists in being beastly, and seems to enjoy being unpleasant, the only effective position is summed up as follows:

The only way to deal with trolls is to limit your reaction to reminding others not to respond to trolls.

When you try to reason with a troll, he wins. When you insult a troll, he wins. When you scream at a troll, he wins. The only thing that trolls can't handle is being ignored.


If you see something offensive, you should write an extremely pleasant reply, or ignore it.

Peace









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posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:20 AM
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Apologies to all.

Apparently I don't speak English. My attempt to express to WyrdeOne not to take it personally (though maybe I needed to hold my exhaspertion) now has me accussed of making it personal.

Have a lovely day.



posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:42 AM
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No offense taken Relentless, and I'm sure WyrdeOne can live with it to.


It was neither particularly harsh or offensive, but it was personal. It just illustrates how easy it is to get carried away if someone provokes us ever so slightly.

I am just being paranoid about the thread going the way the other one did.













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posted on Apr, 3 2005 @ 09:52 AM
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Relentless - I found your post to be reasonable and factual without in anyway attacking any particular person, but rather worded to address a situation which I, and you, and many many other members on ATS find to be both offensive and prevalent. I must state that many of the people who may have inadvertently offended others and are then told that the post was offensive, will then spend the rest of the thread defending their right to have stated what they had said.

For me the simple rule of thumb with religion, and that includes ANY and all religions, is to view the "deity" or representative of such a "deity" (for lack of a better phrase) in the same light as a close relative and show the same respect you would show for the person's, say mother when posting. In other words lets not say "Yo mama is so fat ....", or "Yo God is so dumb..." or"May yo Pope rot in hell". This does not imply that members shouldn't start thread's addressing opinion about such "deities" or family members if this can be substantiated with firm facts, or even fair speculation, but when it is purely "yo mama" remarksto show disdain then its best to not make them.

Feelings are everywhere, be gentle.





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