Top Ten Tips To Troll

Troll — somebody who posts deliberately nasty messages to engage a community in a negative way in order to disrupt.

  1. Claim your Space — A good internet troll knows when to show up and claim a virgin space. Has nobody gone here before? Perfect! The space should allow a lot of opportunities for mischief, upsetting the general order of things by asking simple questions to begin with. The more open, the more naive, the better. You want people to say ‘No, people in my community would never do that…” and then do that.
  2. Be Anonymous Anonymity protects you from suffering serious consequences from your more nasty actions. Use fake names and various email adresses to create alternate online identities, hide your IP address using a VPN connection. If an authority approaches you claim it was your room mate. Who is going to prove you wrong? Of course, for the person on the other side of your trolling make sure you violate privacy at every turn.
  3. Be Shocking — it doesn’t matter what your honest opinion is. Get rid of that. You want to shock the system, so get rude. Cross that boundary. It causes your audience to be in shock and awe, unsure how to act next. Your power as a Troll thrives on this moment of indecision. Use of Ad hominem attacks and other logical fallicies is a prerequisite to enhance shock and awe.
  4. Manipulate — use social psychology and rethorical tricks to push a conversation a certain way. The way you ask a question influences debate. Who you allow to speak, and who you don’t.. moderation of the conversation plays a large role in how your trolling works out.
  5. Don’t care — a troll doesn’t give a flying fuck about his audience and how they deal with the consequences of his actions. It simply is not part of the considerations. Let go of any ethics that you have.
  6. Select your Audience — know who you are talking to. What makes them hurt, outraged? What triggers them? You don’t troll Republicans, Libertarians and Democrats in the same way. Learn how to truly irritate.
  7. Make Memes — why use words when you can use pictures? The real troll prevents arguments by using a semi-funny meme. The meme always wins and is seldom countered as an argument.
  8. Abuse Rethoric — use of logical fallacies, ad hominem, cherry picking arguments, straw men, cheap tricks like invoking Hitler in a debate … a Troll does so regularly. It makes the debate more heated, and sometimes nobody even notices. That is on them, monitors of such debates should be more alert.
  9. Unmask the Enemy — Trolls will encounter not just e-moderators but counter trolls, people who will with a certain kind of tenacity try to counter the troll by making them seem like a real life person. When faced with this use doxing: revealing your adversary’s real life contact address so they can be haressed at their home with fake pizza orders, police raids and other fun. That will show them!
  10. Have Fun — this is the bottomline. Trolls wanna have fun. When your trolling is no longer fun and starts to have (serious) consequences drop your behaviour or find a new place to troll.
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