Sunday, June 25, 2006


Those of you who read this blog regularly have no doubt noticed that trolls have virtually taken over many of the comment threads. You've also probably seen me state that a reordering of the blog is going to be occurring soon in order to eliminate the problem.

It can't happen soon enough; I agree. Trolls are edifying up to a point, because they're instructive about a certain mindset and a particular type of puerile emotional behavior. However, enough is enough--and it's definitely been more than enough, here. We get it; no further demonstration is necessary.

But there are various options to be studied and considered, and this takes quite a bit of time. Then, implementing the change takes time as well. And I have an enormous number of other backlogged things to do after getting back from my vacation. So, although I'm working on this and I definitely plan to get to it some time this coming week (or almost definitely the next), I ask for your patience and forbearance. I am aware of the problem, I am on the task, and it will be done.

In the meantime, I can only repeat that you not feed the trolls, although the temptation seems to be great--and, for some, apparently irresistible. Feeding the trolls brings the worst out in everyone.


At 3:10 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Ymarsakar said...

Meditation, sublimating hot anger to cold rage, and stress control methods. People who don't know how to use these things, should avoid responding to agent provocateurs since they are the only ones who can control their own behavior here. We cannot do it for them, and we certainly cannot brainwash the agent provocataeurs.

Discipline is not a popular nor a very well described virtue, but still, it exists to be used if you know of it.

If you cannot read their posts and ignore them, because it bugs you, then I suggest you exercise a self-censorship method and stop reading their posts. You can do so easily through hiding all the posts through the post a comment page. Click on the ones you want to read.

At 4:22 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Unknown said...

i agree with yrmdwnkr

..neo only got annoyed cos my picture is better than hers

and for neo-cons with their high level of intolerance


At 4:27 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger confusedforeigner said...


Oh Happy day.

At 4:29 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger confusedforeigner said...

Trolls are edifying up to a point, because they're instructive about a certain mindset and a particular type of puerile emotional behavior.

And, if that ain't evidence of deep seated PTSD related paranoia, I don't know what is.

At 4:53 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Senescent Wasp said...

Say goodnight, boys.

At 5:19 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger newton said...


I've read your blog for a very long time, and I find it a very intelligent read.

Now, regarding the trolls: any sweeping change in troll control or elimination cannot come soon enough to your place.

It has been my experience (as a personal blogger and a blogging partner at two other blogs now) that the best way to keep trolls out of your turf is to give them no quarter and no mercy. My troll policy at my blogs is simple: first time trolling, you're out of here. End of sentence.

Oh, sure, they'll scream "First Amendment" until they're blue in the face. But your blog is your personal space on the Web. As with anything else, this rule applies: "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone." Go scream obscenities somewhere else. I will not allow it, let alone any troll hijacking a comments thread. If they want to rant, they can do it on their own time and their own dime: why don't they have their own blogs, then? Or do they enjoy harrassing other people?

Methinks they do, no matter how well-educated they are.

I wouldn't want to give cockroaches or scorpions an environment to thrive at my own house. I let the exterminator to take care of the problem, every three months or so. No cockroaches or scorpions, no problem.

Trolls are cockroaches and scorpions, IMHO. They need to be bombed out of bandwidth. I don't give them second chances.

There was one in particular who was harrassing my bloging partner for months in many ways over e-mail. She even had to contact the authorities, to no avail. One day, he began harrassing us at our blog, directly. I immediately took out the guns and made sure that everyone knew that trolls are not welcome there. He kept harrassing. Every time I deleted a comment or even placed his IP address as spam, he kept coming back. It took some thinking on our part, and a good IP blocker (which required blocking any IP address beginning with his first few numbers) to keep him out for a while, until we talked to our server managers and obtained a much more powerful spam blocker and comment moderator code for our blog.

There have been no problems since... Knock on wood...

Neo-neocon, this is your blog. You don't have to tolerate cockroaches in your house. Why do you have to tolerate them on your blog? No one has the right to make your space an uncomfortable one, nor a totally hostile one. There are way too many jerks in the world: why deal with jerks on your own little piece of the planet?

Off with their heads! And have some lemonade while you enjoy the peace and quiet.

Also: I know of other bloggers who have experience the same thing: trolls that harrass and insult others, and even intimidate the bloggers themselves. They have found different ways to deal with them. But whatever way you find, it is YOUR right to be able to discuss things in peace, and for your readers not to feel like they have to stomp on cockroaches every time they come here.

There. My rant. Good luck to you! I will stop by once in a while.

At 10:11 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Ariel said...

If you change your mindset, no longer take offence or challenge, they become very humorous.

I now look at them as comic relief.

At 10:50 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Darrell said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 10:57 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Darrell said...

I won’t miss them, but you have to admit, many times they have demonstrated the exact point that Neo makes in the post. I find that funny most times even though it is annoying. I am guilty of feeding them lately, apologize to everyone for that.

At 11:12 PM, June 25, 2006, Blogger Simon Kenton said...

I have run a couple of invitation-only, topic-focused email lists. In addition to the invitation rule, it was necessary to institute a civility rule. This was, at its most basic, a requirement that no one post what they would not want to have posted about them.

I never messed around with this. One moment you're ripping off a satisfying guttural insult; the next, your posts bounce. No warnings to play nice, no cluckings, no explanations and wheedlings and fake promises that "this time I really mean it." Put another way, I didn't act like the UN. Here you are, here you were. In the midst of life we are in death.

It's interesting that the people I cast out all knew why they were out, and they all pretended that they didn't. Clearly they were used to playing the free speech card and the wounded victim card and the baffled, hurt card; and having all these ploys work.

Let me applaud your decision. You are the nucleus of a community, and whether it is fair or not, a responsibility to care for that community is now yours.

At 4:31 AM, June 26, 2006, Blogger Weary G said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 5:09 PM, June 28, 2006, Blogger Unknown said...

It's interesting that the people I cast out all knew why they were out

the people i cast out! ...sounds like this particularly retard has a bit of a god complex

If you change your mindset, no longer take offence or challenge, they become very humorous.

hey i am humorous! you are the dull party

...its all the same lazy crap...

you disagree=you is a troll.


if you had any intellectual courage you could cope with me arguing - mocking etc. but you are weak feeble and none too bright...

time the substance from which I am made. Time is a river which carries me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger that devours me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire that consumes me, but I am the fire.

At 5:33 PM, June 28, 2006, Blogger Ariel said...

The illustrations are truly confirming.

At 7:46 PM, July 07, 2006, Blogger confusedforeigner said...

Ariel said...
The illustrations are truly confirming.

6:33 PM, June 28, 2006

Oh, the irony.

(That would be actual irony, not the US version)


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