NOTE: Internet Trolls are not nearly as cute as the Trolls depicted in the image above, nor are they likely to have wicked hair or shiny gem belly buttons. Maybe. But most likely not. You have heard of trolls, though, right? I mean, you’re reading this on the World Wide Web, so I should safely assume so, but just in case – Wikipedia, take it away.
PLEASE DON’T FEED THE TROLLS.
I mean, sure you could walk around singing “That’s what I got haterrz, haterz everywhere we go, haterz everywhere we go…” but coming from me – I hope you would expect more of a positive way of dealing. I’m not here to legislate or dictate how you deal with your “haters” or trolls. I’m just saying there are better ways to deal, rather than feeding into their nasty faces – And I’m here to offer you some guidance. So, take note.
First, let’s clear something up. There’s the ‘ole saying, “If you’ve got haters, that means you’ve stood up for something in your life.” Well, not necesarily. Some people just plain don’t like people. Perhaps it has nothing to do with your opinion on the Occupy movement or your political standpoint. Your skin color or ethnicity may not be a concern. Perhaps it’s not even because of your choice of sequin leopard print strirup pants. The plain truth is that some people just don’t like some people. Often it’s not even personal. There may just be a personality clash. That’s fine. You don’t have to be best friends with every person that walks in and out of your life. Get over it.
In the times of Formspring and the anonymous option on Tumblr, shit-talking, slut shaming, body policing, name calling, etc is something people deal with on the daily. I mean, you could just delete your account and turn off the ask or anonymous option (GASP – What? Noooooo). I did this a while ago. Although I got much more positive messages than negative ones (probably a 25:1 ratio), I didn’t want to subject myself to the negativity. Take that, Trolls!
A wrote a post a few months ago, briefly touching on the subject because someone (anonymously) asked me if I just didn’t get “hate mail” or if I just chose not to post it. Feel free to skip on over there for a minute (then come back). Basically here’s the deal – If I start acknowledging Trolls and their Troll-y remarks, more Troll-y Trollfaces are going to show their ugly faces and try and chime in. NOT ON MY WATCH. Acknowledging these Trolls does nothing positive. You are simply announcing to the world (There’s a lot of people that live here, you know), “HEY, I’M GIVING YOU THE OPTION TO TALK SMACK ABOUT ME AND SAY EXTREMELY TRIGGERING THINGS TO ME ANONYMOUSLY WITH ZERO REPERCUSSION.” Why? Why why why? You could post their remarks publicly. You could tell them to fuck off and that “you don’t care” (but c’mon, obviously you care enough to acknowledge their existence and give them the satisfaction). You could present a rebuttal. You could make some really good points.
But let’s be honest. PWNING these Trolls isn’t going to do anything producitve. They’re not going to step back and say, “Ghee Goly! I was being rude! Oh shucks, I’d better go apologize.” No. Instead, they’re going to be sitting in their basement with their hand down a pair of stained sweatpants and/or Cheetos-stained fingers typing TROLOLOLOL and cackling. And you, my friend, are better than that. Alright, so maybe that example was kind of extreme, but when I picture someone talking smack anonymously, I automatically paint the picture of some beer-gutted cheeseyifingered Trollface McTrollyson.
THE LAW OF ATTRACTION, PEOPLE.
(We’ve covered this, yes?)
You attract what you direct your attention to. When people take note that you are willing to acknowledge crass words and rude comments delivered by rude grey faces, they’ll take advantage of it. If you’re complaining about people being rude to you, more people are going to be rude to you. Having a bad day? Take a time out. Projecting this negativity (onto the Internet, of all places) is terribly counterproductive and just plain silly. Talk to your cat. Talk to your plant. Talk to your glass of water. Don’t spew that shit online because it’s permanent. “Oh, but I just deleted it…” You have heard of screen shots, yes? I mean, you can post something and then immediately delete it, but in those two seconds, it’s showed up on someone’s feed and they could easily screen shot that (HAHA! GOTCHA! BLACKMAIL!). As I stated in the previous posted, you will rarely see/hear me blog about negative things because 1.) The negative things I experience are so insignificant, they aren’t worth mentioning. 2.) I don’t want to attract more of that negative experience, so I don’t talk about it. BOOM.
A bit of advice – Pay no mind to the Trolls, as they will get bored and try to fuck up someone else’s day. Seriously. People like to pick on people to try and get a rise out of them. If you get mad, Troll-y Pants finds it amusing and now you’re their pet. Not cool. Way to open the floodgates.
So there you have it. Don’t feed the Trolls. Don’t acknowledge them. Don’t give them the time of day. Ignoring a Troll is the most damaging thing you can do to it because it will shrivel up into a little ball and spontaneously combust. True story. If you’re having a bad day, stay away from the Internet. Go build a cake or something. Just don’t answer/publish some greasy sweat panted, cheesy-fingered creep-o’s poor grammar and sad attempt to bash you.
Or, you know, you could just go back to responding to the Trolls and wondering why EVERYONE IS SO MEAN TO YOU. Just a thought. (;