The Cyber Troll

Occasionally a troll pops up on a discussion board. These are individuals who write inflammatory or disparaging posts, hoping for a flurry of outraged responses which they can then refute with further insults. In troll-speak, they do it for the lulz, meaning “for the joy of disrupting another’s emotional equilibrium.”

Image Source: Unknown

From this article in Science Friday comes a summary of troll behavior:

‘Trolling can

  1. be frustrated if users correctly interpret an intent to troll, but are not provoked into responding,
  2. be thwarted, if users correctly interpret an intent to troll, but counter in such a way as to curtail or neutralize the success of the troller,
  3. fail, if users do not correctly interpret an intent to troll and are not provoked by the troller, or,
  4. succeed, if users are deceived into believing the troller’s pseudo-intention(s), and are provoked into responding sincerely.”

Wikipedia counsels, “Experienced participants in online forums know that the most effective way to discourage a troll is usually to ignore him or her, because responding tends to encourage trolls to continue disruptive posts.” This is usually summarized by forum participants as “Please do not feed the trolls”. If there are no lulz to be had, a troll has no reason for existence and will in general move on to what he or she considers greener pastures.

One forum I participated in fell victim to an especially egregious attack, which – sadly – resulted in the demise of that community’s incarnation (it subsequently went elsewhere, in a locale better protected from infiltration. In an astounding flurry of pseudo-creativity, the following piece of literary vandalism practically wrote itself, but I’m pleased with the outcome, because it served to get all my frustration with these sub-humans out of my head and down on “paper”, as it were.

The Cyber Troll

with the most profound apologies to J. R. R. Tolkien

Troll sat alone in his filthy home,
He had no reason outside to roam;
His pimply face was a sore disgrace
And friends were hard to come by.
Done by! Gum by!
In a filthy home he dwelt alone,
And friends were hard to come by.

He’d surf the net, always on the watch
For nasty pictures that would tickle his crotch
But the thing he loved best was to curse and swear
And act like a total retard.
Bombard! Blackguard!
He’d yank people’s chains for laughs and lulz
And act like a total retard!

‘Ha ha!’, said Troll, ‘I pwn your soul.
So why don’t you shut your old cake hole?
Your posts are lame and I take control
Of your blog, you stupid loser!
Boozer! Schmoozer!
I can drool and spit and you can’t do squat1
‘Cuz I’m safe from poor old loser!

But the folks whose paths he tends to cross
Have naught but contempt for this pile of dross
So they simply pretend that he isn’t there
And Troll gets all the madder.
Sadder! Adder!
When poor old Troll doesn’t get results
He just gets all the madder.

‘For a couple o’ pins’, says Troll, and grins,
‘I’ll swear so much you’ll think I’m twins.
I’ll make you see you’ve got nothing on me
And your base belong to me now!
Hee now! See now!
I’m king of the world, bow down to me,
All your base belong to me now!

But just as he thought his victim was caught,
He found his hands had hold of naught.
The blogs were locked, and Troll was shocked
That everyone ignored him!
Bored him! Floored him!
He’d been dismissed, and was mighty pissed
That everyone ignored him!

But blacker than coal is the heart of Troll
Whose life is as barren as the Kansas dust bowl.
He’ll just move on to greener fields
Where folks will rise to his baiting.
Hating! Grating!
Old Troll laughs, when he hears folks groan,
And he thinks he’s won with his baiting.

But the folks who win, to Troll’s chagrin
Are the ones who learn the rule herein;
Ignore the Troll with the heart of coal
And he’ll quickly travel elsewhere!
Nose hair! Hot air!
His world’s so sad, but we don’t care
As long as he’s flaming elsewhere!


The Old Wolf has spoken.

1 While composing this, I thought of a better rhyme – but I strive to write family-friendly material.

6 responses to “The Cyber Troll

  1. Pingback: The Troll, 1820′s version | Playing in the World Game

  2. Pingback: Funny business: Because they’re free! | Playing in the World Game

  3. Pingback: First Contact | Playing in the World Game

  4. Pingback: Just Telling It Like It Is | Playing in the World Game

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