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Of Trolling

ktarthan

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This is a bit of a departure from the regular theme of this blog as it doesn't exactly address an argument per se, though it often comes up argument adjacent. I'll make it short and sweet:

Attempting to convince the world that you're an idiot and succeeding is a victory neither hard won nor worth merit.



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HELLO PERSON

The objective isn't "look dumb and make people think I'm dumb." The objective is, more specifically, to be absolutely irritating, to the point where my opponents cannot resist doing stupid things. To that end, I have been wonderfully successful.

I'd like to say that the strategy is comparable to "dragging people down to my level," but I've been far more successful than I ever should have.

Of course, I don't expect a soul in this world to appreciate my antics, though my allies typically do (when they aren't cleaning up after me anyway). I'm an asset in my own, uh, "special," way.

Or maybe I'm totally delusional and people are being nice to me because they feel bad. Who knows.

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Substitute "idiot" for any other derogatory term, really. It's trivial to get people to dislike you for any number of reasons. Simply saying that it was your intention to get them to dislike you doesn't lend the act any worth.

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In a variety of situations, I have reigned superior in dragging morons like Brehon, Tenages, and practically half of the NPO Alliance and 90 percent of the PN and PT players towards a characteristic consisting of such childish acts and sayings of idiocy. The art of trolling needs to be praised more and trolls should not be viewed as the essence of corruption, but an essence of manipulation and power. Those who deny to view the truth of their tyranny and brilliance of the troll are those who accuse trolls of being annoying and being an idiot. Thank you for proving my point in how I convinced a dumb-ass like you to read the post of this "idiot" and $%&@ you very much.

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I must protest against this blog having such unfrequent entries. And I must thank Ktarthan for being Ktarthan (your nation slogan... :wub: )

On topic.

The point of trolling isn't to convince or to build a reputation, but to derail and bury the thread/arguments under pages of stupid discussion. Discrediting the troll can't get you anywhere, save maybe where the troll wanted to bring you.

In fact there's only one way to neuter trolls, which is to ignore them. If you can actually do it.

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The point of trolling isn't to convince or to build a reputation, but to derail and bury the thread/arguments under pages of stupid discussion. Discrediting the troll can't get you anywhere, save maybe where the troll wanted to bring you.

In fact there's only one way to neuter trolls, which is to ignore them. If you can actually do it.

Oh I'm well aware. I was attempting to not get lengthy about this, but I guess the distance between what I said and what I meant was a bit too far and most people came to the conclusion that I'm trying to admonish people who troll. This is not the case.

My OP carries two main ideas, and I'll try to break them down:

"Attempting to convince the world that you're an idiot and succeeding"

The basis of making someone dislike you is to be disagreeable. Whether by disagreeing directly with what they say, by espousing ideas that they strongly disagree with, or by acting in a way they strongly disagree with. The main point is to act contrary to their beliefs/opinions.

The other main ingredient is believability; if they don't think you're sincere, then you don't effectively establish yourself as being disagreeable, and whatever you're trying to do won't really work.

So, together this means being believably disagreeable. I used the word "idiot" but as I said, it can be pretty much any other derogatory term. The take away here is that success means the target(s) will be convinced you are wrong in some way.

This really only covers a specific flavor of "trolling". It's probably the most common and most effective one, but anger isn't the only reaction that people can try to elicit.

"is a victory neither hard won nor worth merit."

Now that we've established the sort of trolling I'm talking about, this is where I call into question its merit. This part is a bit tricky, because there's a bit of implied context. That is, it's directed only to a person who is attempting to convince me otherwise. Or in other words: an openly proud troll.

Since we established earlier that believability is a major component to effective trolling, a person who admits that they are indeed purposely trying to elicit a response is intentionally reducing their effectiveness. So in my eyes, the only reason to do so would be because they assign value to their actions. And once such a thought is expressed, it's now a valid target for criticism, which is exactly what the OP is.

So, without discussion of trolling, the OP doesn't exist. I guess you could call it a meta criticism? Effectively, to those who admit they troll: "What, would you like a cookie?"

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Well trolling is a dirty activity and one can't be too choosy when going about it. I think that whatever works is viable as long as it works.

Even getting everyone to face-palm and tell you that you're an "idiot" (I am exaggerating a bit), if that means that the thread is anyway wrecked, is a victory of sorts. It's probably not very hard won and it isn't a style anyone should be gloating about (IMHO), but it gets the job done, thus it's not an entire failure. It's a matter of perspective, I guess.

Your entries are always good reads, anyway. Thank you.

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As someone who considers political trolling to be a fine art, I am mystified at the lack of understanding of why accomplished political trolls practice their arts. I think many people confuse idiotic behaviour with trolling, trolling can and should be intelligent and if well done, so well disguised that the person being trolled doesn't realize it. Idiots are not necessarily trolls, it may well be for example that HoT is simply an idiot role playing an idiot and not a genius masterminding a reaction. I of course have a firm opinion on the matter but that is for a separate discussion.

Jerdge refers to trolling as dirty, which is rather trollish of him for as he later states, it is a matter of perspective.

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There's a give and take. I am not simply eliciting emotional reactions for the sake of it. I do have wider political goals, and I have always believed that everything you do should be honest. For instance, I quite honestly despise MK, I quite honestly mean the things I say, and I quite honestly mean to say things in the highly abrasive manner in which I say them. And there is an intentional effort on my part to continue to being an utter and vocal jerk to those people, and I happen to be one of the best in the game at being a thoroughly dislikable character. I do something that other people can't do because they aren't quite as dislikable as me: I quite successfully make myself into a target for all sorts of boneheaded moves from my opponents. People go out of their way and spend political capital just to spite me. And that is the true victory of what I do, not simply "ha ha you think I'm an idiot." It's "ha ha you think I'm an idiot that is worth spending so much capital on spiting."

MK in particular, with their brand of recklessness, was a particularly easy target for these antics.

There are two reasons I "revealed" this (I think it's obvious, but whatever): First, as a final slap in the face since they're on their way out, and second, because I'm confident that even telling you explicitly (and even posting this further explanation here) will not significantly hamper my abilities. Indeed, by calling me an "idiot," you are proving that I still have the believably that you mentioned.

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HoT, I can't really tell who you're responding to so I'll just ask: who do you think called you an idiot? Other than Mr. Uruk here, I can't see anyone singling you out.

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He isn't sure if I called him an idiot and that's why trolling is best practiced by people who aren't idiots. I would suggest that rather than eliciting an emotional response through great genius some people elicit a response because they are genuinely idiots. The beauty of an idiot however is they often believe they are genius class and the subsequent self-justifications provide the best entertainment.

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There's a give and take. I am not simply eliciting emotional reactions for the sake of it. I do have wider political goals, and I have always believed that everything you do should be honest. For instance, I quite honestly despise MK, I quite honestly mean the things I say, and I quite honestly mean to say things in the highly abrasive manner in which I say them. And there is an intentional effort on my part to continue to being an utter and vocal jerk to those people, and I happen to be one of the best in the game at being a thoroughly dislikable character. I do something that other people can't do because they aren't quite as dislikable as me: I quite successfully make myself into a target for all sorts of boneheaded moves from my opponents. People go out of their way and spend political capital just to spite me. And that is the true victory of what I do, not simply "ha ha you think I'm an idiot." It's "ha ha you think I'm an idiot that is worth spending so much capital on spiting."

MK in particular, with their brand of recklessness, was a particularly easy target for these antics.

There are two reasons I "revealed" this (I think it's obvious, but whatever): First, as a final slap in the face since they're on their way out, and second, because I'm confident that even telling you explicitly (and even posting this further explanation here) will not significantly hamper my abilities. Indeed, by calling me an "idiot," you are proving that I still have the believably that you mentioned.

That's the thing: you're not even really good at this. Not at all. THAT is what everyone is trying to tell you. No one spent political capital on you. Ever. You're a bleep on the radar. A ridiculous bleep but still a bleep. People (on both sides) pass your posts around and go "look at this idiot". Answering you doesn't anger anyone. Not at all. You might be giggling to yourself in your mum's basement, thinking "omg i are huhsumz" but the reality is that you're mediocre at best. The only thing you have going for you is time spent here.

As for your "success", there are many people that are better than you at being a jerk/villain. Archon, Moo, Ivan, Crymson, Grub, Ardus or Xiphosis, to name the world leaders. Heck, even d34th or Schatt do it better than you. And at least we know they do it on purpose.

Oh and before you go "lulz you took time to answer me, i must be hitting on your nerves", just because I enjoy calling someone a moron doesn't mean I'm angry. I don't give a !@#$ if you are a moron. Or pretend to be one. I just enjoy pointing out inadequacies.

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