A disaster or tragedy: Trolls ultimate targets.

Troll Meme. Source: (http://www.freemake.com/blog/long-live-the-troll/)

I believe at some point in all of our lives we have been victims of trolling. Either in real-life or on the internet trolling could range from being made fun of for being a certain ethnicity or being called a derogatory name. In internet slang, a troll 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 (Wikipedia). Their main intent is to provoke readers into an emotional response or off otherwise disrupting normal, on-topic discussion for the troll’s amusement. Whitney Phillips is the author of the book, This is why we can’t have nice things: Mapping the Relationship between Online Trolling and Mainstream Culture, further studies how and why trolls operate with no remorse to their targets or victims online. Phillips suggests that trolls are motivated by what they call lulz, a particular kind of unsympathetic, ambiguous laughter (Phillips 24). Lulz, is arguably the most important concept within the troll space, and an absolutely necessary component in any introduction to trolling (Phillips 27). The only reason to do anything; “I did it for the lulz” is the troll’s catchall excuse, explanation, and punchline for trolling (Phillip 27). Believe it or not there is different types of trolls and many ways a troll can troll. There is rogue trolls who are not associated with a group of trolls, they mainly work alone and have a extreme dislike of human kind or society. Then there is pack trolls who are way more social and outgoing and focus less on memorial pages and troll for fun not hate.

One of many photographs of the Orlando night club shooting (2016). Source (http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/16/us/omar-mateen-wife-arrested/index.html)

A online community that has experienced a tragedy in recent years is the LGBT nation. On June 12, 2016 Orlando Florida, Omar Mateen a 29-year old security guard entered Pulse, a popular gay night club, shot and killed 49 people also injuring 58 others. This shooting was regarded as a terrorist attack/hate crime and one of the deadliest incidents of violence against the LGBT community. The LGBT’s website, www.lgbtnation.com was the victim of trolling by the Westboro Baptist Church celebrating the terrorist attack on the night club. Since the tragedy began, the hate group has been using their social media platforms to preach their vile theology and responding to terrified and heart broken LGBT people (LGBT NATION).

Westboro Baptist Twitter account shows a video of a girl “trolling” about the incident in a celebratory attitude. Source:(https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2016/06/westboro-baptist-trolls-lgbt-people-orlando-attack/)
West Boro Baptist Twitter on a unrelenting tweet spree on the LGBT community. Source:(https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2016/06/westboro-baptist-trolls-lgbt-people-orlando-attack/)
Westboro Baptist main headline article. Source:(https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2016/06/westboro-baptist-trolls-lgbt-people-orlando-attack/)

LGBT nation’s response to these hurtful and hateful troll comments:

LGBT Nation’s Response. Source:(https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2016/06/westboro-baptist-trolls-lgbt-people-orlando-attack/)
LGBT Nation’s response. Source: (https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2016/06/westboro-baptist-trolls-lgbt-people-orlando-attack/)

The comment responses go on and they seem to react to the hurtful trolling comments with sadness and resentment. Obviously, the LGBT nation is not surprised by these posts made by the Westboro Baptist church, they have been known for their hate speeches and protest against the LGBT community. Some of the LGBT nation’s responses are subtle and others obviously retaliate with anger comments and some members suggest violence. The LGBT nation, in my opinion, is handling this onslaught of trolling comments respectably but ultimately they are paying them no mind. Like I mentioned earlier it’s no secret how hateful the Westboro Baptist church can be towards the LGBT community. The LGBT community seems to be doing wonderfully after that whole incident a year ago and still continues to be pride full and true to themselves.

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