3 Ways To Identify Trolls On Social Media
Below is a link to a previous post on our Facebook page about a story I wrote about the so called "Boycott Beyonce" movement started by several police union groups. Now if you click on that link you will see a comment by someone that is not only ignorant but showcases the world we live in with social media. This person who commented on Feb. 23rd about an article I wrote 7 days earlier is someone we in the social media world call a "troll". What's a troll you ask? Here let me explain:
"Trolls", by definition according to Wikipedia, is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion, often for their own amusement.
I've been using social media since its popular rise before 2004, so I've seen trolls win so many times in the comment section that I felt like I had to share this information with you. I'm sure you've taken the bait from these people who have absolutely nothing better to do with their time other than to spew stupidity for the sake of their own entertainment and ignorance. So here are some helpful pointers to help you identify these people:
Most "trolls" know that their online "comments" are usually things they won't say in polite company or even on their job because they know that they could be reprimanded or at least fired for their stance. So in order to keep their employers and friends off the scent, they don't post a picture of their actual self. Instead, expect a "stock" image like a "dog" or "flag" or inanimate object to make it seem like they are a regular person but are really scared, ignorant people who want to be considered "anonymous", I call them "cowards".
Most trolls will QUICKLY try to type up their nonsense because they want to move on to the next person they want to annoy and offend. If they REALLY had a smart, intellectual argument to present, they would take the time to use spell check. If see a lot of misspellings, more than likely they are a reflection of the ignorance they are trying to get you to take the bait on.
Most "trolls" will try to assert themselves by starting their comments with something that on the surface, makes sense...ONLY to them, but the minute you point out the stupidity in their statement, expect the name calling and angry insults to kick off. One sure fire way to test a troll is to use "facts" and "logic" against them, because trolls feed off your EMOTIONAL response, when you respond with logic devoid of emotion, they will lose it, and will go the extra mile to get you to respond back. Why? Its because it is their hope that since YOU are a person that is using social media correctly, that you will slip up and post something that they in turn can use against YOU (i.e. report YOU to your employers). Don't take the bait!