The psychology of the troll?

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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#41  Postby Doubtdispelled » Jan 25, 2013 6:27 pm

Spearthrower wrote:Trolls are people who just post coffee smileys in threads and....

Nora_Leonard wrote: :coffee:



Oh err hi Nora! :whistle:


I think she wants to be interviewed.....
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#42  Postby reddix » Jan 25, 2013 6:46 pm

kennyc wrote:
reddix wrote:I think trolls are mostly in it for the game or fun factor and a "good" troll will change to fit each targeted group.

How they are identified is different topic than the troll's psychology. It's still interesting though. :nod:



True, but I still believe the behavior can be identified as 'trollish'

I mean, the whole point is the disruption and the Lulz, eh?

(Again Thanks for the links above!)


Some trolls are better at the game than others and some people are annoying and don't know it. Then you get in to trying to establish intent... Good luck with that. :grin:

I think a person can identify a "troll" however they want and individual websites can identify a "troll" however they want. But I don't think there is (or even should be) a consistent way of identifying a troll across the entire internet. One man's troll is another's free speech advocate, educator, skeptic, etc. (take your pick).
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#43  Postby kennyc » Jan 25, 2013 6:53 pm

I disagree. Because it's not about 'one man' it's about a consistent pattern of behavior as agreed to by 'more than one man' - that's the whole point of what I said in post #27 above - http://www.rationalskepticism.org/socia ... l#p1609113
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#44  Postby reddix » Jan 25, 2013 7:10 pm

kennyc wrote:I disagree. Because it's not about 'one man' it's about a consistent pattern of behavior as agreed to by 'more than one man' - that's the whole point of what I said in post #27 above - http://www.rationalskepticism.org/socia ... l#p1609113

you said in #27:

kennyc wrote:It has to do with consistent and across the board behavior. If I am the only one that finds a particular poster annoying then the issue is with me, if others do as well then that behavior moves along the spectrum towards trollish behavior.



Yes, and my point is that the "others" that will agree with you changes and varies across the internet, from one website to another. If someone like Spearthrower was to post at a creationist forum in the same manner as he does here, even if his intent was to educate people, he would likely be labelled a troll there. Does that make him a troll? If so, why hasn't he been banned here?
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#45  Postby kennyc » Jan 25, 2013 7:17 pm

reddix wrote:
kennyc wrote:I disagree. Because it's not about 'one man' it's about a consistent pattern of behavior as agreed to by 'more than one man' - that's the whole point of what I said in post #27 above - http://www.rationalskepticism.org/socia ... l#p1609113

you said in #27:

kennyc wrote:It has to do with consistent and across the board behavior. If I am the only one that finds a particular poster annoying then the issue is with me, if others do as well then that behavior moves along the spectrum towards trollish behavior.



Yes, and my point is that the "others" that will agree with you changes and varies across the internet, from one website to another. If someone like Spearthrower was to post at a creationist forum in the same manner as he does here, even if his intent was to educate people, he would likely be labelled a troll there. Does that make him a troll? If so, why hasn't he been banned here?



I don't know, cause I've been doing my best to get him banned. :P

But again my point is that it is not about the topic posted, but about the behavior. And yes a person can certainly be a troll in one situation and not in another, but that is really irrelevant. You might as well say that because someone doesn't act that way in real life then they are not a troll, which is malarky. In the words of a famous man, "A troll is as a troll does." If the behavior is seen as trollish by a significant percentage of the group or moderators then yes, the person is a troll.

Wait I meant, "A troll is like a box of chocolates.."
Last edited by kennyc on Jan 25, 2013 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#46  Postby Spearthrower » Jan 25, 2013 7:19 pm

Yeah - sometimes 'trolling' can mean 'rocking the boat and not stopping when asked to'. I don't think there's really a definition we can come up with that doesn't necessarily need to consider intent. Of course, no one can actually be sure of intent from words on a screen - we can probably do it imperfectly face to face as our evolutionary history seems to have geared us to deceit and detecting deceit (my evidence for this runs from blushing to the size of our testicles, but I shan't go into that now :lol:) - but we are pattern-detecting beasties too, so when we start to see a type of behaviour repeated, and that behaviour is very difficult to explain as being consistent with a desire to communicate with others genuinely - to work at communicating - then I think it's fair to engage /suspicion mode/ because the internet is the natural habitat of trolls.
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#47  Postby kennyc » Jan 25, 2013 7:21 pm

Psssst. Spearthrower, you think he's trolling us???
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#48  Postby chairman bill » Jan 25, 2013 7:31 pm

I think there's more than one category of troll.

There are those who are simply anti-social & out to do whatever harm they can, cause as much disruption as possible, because they can.

Then there are those who simply forget or don't know how to behave on-line. They know how to do things off-line, face-to-face with someone, but on-line? No. Their sense of ethics, proper behaviour, understanding of social mores, even maybe their morality, gets skewed or abandoned.

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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#49  Postby Aern Rakesh » Jan 25, 2013 8:19 pm

Doubtdispelled wrote:
Spearthrower wrote:Trolls are people who just post coffee smileys in threads and....

Nora_Leonard wrote: :coffee:



Oh err hi Nora! :whistle:


I think she wants to be interviewed.....


I think she was bookmarking.... :popcorn:

But DD and I did get a warning about that not so long ago... Of course, we had very good reasons for doing it!
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#50  Postby NilsGLindgren » Jan 25, 2013 9:18 pm

So far I have not received a warning, only, Metatron has told me not to call younger males (almost all of them :sigh:) "my dear boy" because that could be seen as inflammatory.
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#51  Postby Doubtdispelled » Jan 25, 2013 9:23 pm

Nora_Leonard wrote:
Doubtdispelled wrote:
Spearthrower wrote:Trolls are people who just post coffee smileys in threads and....

Nora_Leonard wrote: :coffee:



Oh err hi Nora! :whistle:


I think she wants to be interviewed.....


I think she was bookmarking.... :popcorn:

But DD and I did get a warning about that not so long ago... Of course, we had very good reasons for doing it!

:lol: And I'm guessing you realise that your coffee drinking immediately brought that to mind!

But it wasn't a warning as such, Nora, more like a spanking.....


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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#52  Postby Spearthrower » Jan 25, 2013 9:29 pm

See? Incorrigible coffee trolls!

/attenborough mode

Here, we can start... to profile the troll... in its... native habitat! Watch as they engage each other - a truly fascinating window into this rarely seen phenomenon...

:tongue:
Last edited by Spearthrower on Jan 25, 2013 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#53  Postby Doubtdispelled » Jan 25, 2013 9:31 pm

Spearthrower wrote:See? Incorrigible coffee trolls! We can start to profile the native troll in its habitat now!

:tongue2:
Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.

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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#54  Postby Doubtdispelled » Jan 25, 2013 9:34 pm

Damnit! That was supposed to be

:-P


:roll:
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#55  Postby kennyc » Jan 25, 2013 9:36 pm

Interesting Behavior. ...
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#56  Postby Aern Rakesh » Jan 25, 2013 9:50 pm

Spearthrower wrote:See? Incorrigible coffee trolls!

/attenborough mode

Here, we can start... to profile the troll... in its... native habitat! Watch as they engage each other - a truly fascinating window into this rarely seen phenomenon...

:tongue:


We've trolled the forum IRL! :lol:

Seriously, what do you think we talked about the several times we've met?
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#57  Postby Trenton » Jan 25, 2013 10:32 pm

surreptitious57 wrote:
Trenton wrote:
OK well no one understands trolls it seems - it is not an Earth shattering conclusion but it is about right

I know two things about trolls and one of them is that detection is self defeating so the really awesome ones never get caught now. But given the size of the net they can go from site to site quite effortlessly. The most famous troll in atheism is of course David Mabus who apparently hates us with unbelievable malice and has done time for it too. But he is probably way off the scale. I personally do not see the point in them myself because i think the net is a fantastically wonderful tool for communication and especially so on rational sites where ideas should be taken apart and absolutely so too. But trolls ? Yes we have had them but like all sites they get banned when discovered which is what I meant about detection being self defeating. Anyway that is about as much as I can help you with now. I wish I could give you more but I am not or have ever been or shall ever be a troll now. So my knowledge of their modus operandi is a tad on the short side. So all that remains is to welcome you to the Skep ship while you patiently wait for some to turn up and be interviewed now. One sugar or two, by the way ?


I know 1000 things about trolls, but the first thing I know is we are all potential trolls, and we have all trolled at some time. Even moderators do it.

I think you can put them into categories, but like any mental illness a troll has his own unique pathology.

If I had to put them into groups though I would start by saying that most trolls would score high on the NPD scale and they would typically be overcompensation for something. On the other end of the scale is those who care too little because they are psychopathic, and have no empathy or understanding of what they do.

Ok seriously though most are just idiots, it's only a few that are genuinely mentally ill, but what a few, if I could tell you the trolling I've seen, well you wouldn't believe it!
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#58  Postby Trenton » Jan 25, 2013 10:36 pm

[*]
NilsGLindgren wrote:So far I have not received a warning, only, Metatron has told me not to call younger males (almost all of them :sigh:) "my dear boy" because that could be seen as inflammatory.


The fact that you didn't is down to some people not giving that much of a fuck. Hell if you never received a warning you are dead inside. ;)
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#59  Postby Trenton » Jan 25, 2013 10:40 pm

Mike_L wrote:
nunnington wrote:I did actually write a short piece on trolls, after working as a mod, not on this forum, and I got sort of interested in them. There are obviously different types, for example, there are some really nutty ones, and some very bright ones.

However, I noticed the following:

1. narcissism - they want people to talk about them a lot.
2. incontinent - some of them spew their emotions around, but not all of them.
3. inflammatory - this is pretty standard, and is often the definition of trolling.
4. aggressive (connects with 3).
5. paranoid - some of them see bad people at work in every forum. Of course, they set it up also. They need enemies.
6. personalized - they often want to reduce the discussion to very personal terms and accusations.
7. rage and envy - seem quite common.


That's a nice generalised list.

One troll I particularly like is the martyr if and when people finally figure out he's a troll he tries to eek out his remaining time by saying the system is against him etc, even though he never had the faintest belief in what he said.

Trolls who seem to be bad at then being trolled seem a highlight too, for the irony. :)
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Re: The psychology of the troll?

#60  Postby Spearthrower » Jan 25, 2013 10:48 pm

Only partially connected, but I remember reading this many, many years ago when I first started using t'net.

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