Wednesday, May 13, 2009

2394 Bullies 3

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A few bloggers have been having problems with trolls leaving nasty comments. I don't mind comments that express an opinion contrary to mine, even when they imply that I'm stupid, or morally lacking, when that implication comes out of the commenter's passion for the topic. But I won't accept comments that are obviously just personal attacks with the intent of hurting me. I won't allow trolls.

Trolls attack people on blogs or forums or in chat rooms for the sole purpose of getting a reaction. They are experts at finding your soft spots. When you give them an outraged reaction, it thrills them, they know they got to you, and they'll come back for more.

The thing to do is to ignore them. Take control. Delete the comment. (On Blogger, delete the comment twice, so no one is even aware there ever was a comment.) If any of your regular readers responded to the troll, delete their comments, too. There must be no record of the troll ever having visited.

Do not, under any circumstances, give a troll the satisfaction of your response in a post. That's the worst thing you can do. It's exactly what they want.

If they decide to barrage your blog with their garbage, turn comment moderation on. And if your blog host allows it, bar anonymous comments for a while. It doesn't take more than a week or so before they get the idea that you won't put up with them and won't respond to them.

The goal is to avoid giving them a billboard. When they get no satisfaction, if they are completely ignored, they'll move on to greener (or bloodier) pastures.

(Um, this assumes you don't enjoy the drama. Some people like it. They like blasting back. They like being defended by others. If that's the case, "Ne'mind". Have at it.)

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