Science Proves That Trolls Ruin Everything

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Let's list all of the internet things that this explains:

Sexism threads
Friendzone threads
ME3 threads
Mlp threads

and whatever the hell 123fakestreet posts whenever he comes around.

Is it just me or do trolls...I mean scientists have too much time on their hands? Have we already found all the world secrets and need something new to study? Are there more scientists than there is science? Well then, I'll just find these answers once I read though this forum.

When people get offended or angry they get defensive? wow, what a discovery

So don't be a dick and it will all be okay?

image
Fine, I'll just go home then.

grigjd3:

Caffeine_Bombed:
The main thing I took away from this article is that Science could be observing us right now... ¬_¬

Change could to is and you have it.

We're through the looking glass-here, people...

Another reason to dislike trolls. And this time that reason is SCIENCE! You heard it here first people, science tells you that trolling is bad. Don't be a troll and don't feed the troll... FOR SCIENCE!!!!!
image

First of all they dont seem to know what a real troll is.
trolls is a prankster. ir originated from practical jokes and went into ways to trick people.
now however every idiot who flames anyone is labeled a troll so news like this appear. Thank you, internet, for ruining yet another concept.
If i have learned anything being a scientist is that most scientists dont really know squat their talking about. Its just that the average audience know even less and as such they think they know thier stuff.

beside that, all i thought reading the article was this:
image

I think I shall begin most posts with this picture.

Can we talk ?
image

Vegosiux:

kouriichi:

Who are you to judge my way of life?! You find me pathetic even though you dont even know me?

Thats what truly holds the world back these days. Treating others poorly based on their life choices! Discrimination has never led to anything good in our world. Maybe if you and all the parents who think "Violent video games are evil", opened your eyes to the truth that its not the troll, or the game that's the problem, its poor parenting and bigotry that are!

But i will forgive your quick judgement on my nature, and extend an olive branch of friendship. Not because im the bigger man, but because its the right thing to do.

Oh-ho-ho-ho. I've got my eye on you, mister! You shan't affect me in any meaningful way, no sir! But, the thing is, "professional troll", "devil's advocate", I don't know...those things are quite difficult to pull off since they obviously need to have the proper motivation, and often people misinterpret them as "antagonizing people for the sake of antagonizing them".

Fanghawk:
It only gets worse when discussing [b]serious issues [b] like climate change or Mass Effect 3

I see what you did there!

I wouldnt say ive ever "Antagonized" people. More like..... "Brought forth the most important thing we humans can have".

Feelings. I have given others the gift of knowing they are alive. Love, anger, confusion, things like these are what make us alive! Without them we are nothing but a shell. I have shown people how to feel! How to live and breath! Even if I must be the target of the more base emotions such as anger, and rage, so be it, if it means I am doing what i know is the right thing.

But please, dont think me as a martyr, im only doing what others wouldnt. Caring. Because caring is important. Just as you care for your family, i care for all mankind! And i only wish to share this caring, this feeling of being alive. If thats not motivation, than i dont know what is.

RJ 17:
Actually I think the real point of this article can be summed up with the wise saying "Arguing on the internet is like competing in the Special Olympics: even if you win, you're still retarded." It is for the exact reason that you brought up: 9 times out of 10 no matter how well thought out, stated, and expressed your opinion might be, the chances of actually changing someone else's opinion is nearly impossible. What's the moral of the story? What we all already knew: just ignore the jackass saying things clearly just to piss you off.

(excitedly pleased at the prospect of intelligent discussion)I actually kinda disagree with you. While I'll admit that the chance of actually changing someone's mind on the internet is slim to nil I whole heartedly disagree with the idea that I can not be done. There is not really anything about the internet that make changing minds with it any more difficult than with a book or print article. The point I see behind this argument is that the main reason why this doesn't happen is that on the internet people don't normally have the social graces that they have in real life and resort to mean spirited tones to express their frustration. This idea is kinda based on the fact that the original article from what I read only described the comments as "inflammatory" and "rude" and trolling seems to have been added by the various media that this article has been passed down from. The escapist at this point is getting its data from io9 not the original article.

Yay, I'm making a difference!

I purposely skipped reading ANY of the comments, but my psychic senses tell me it is sooooooooo full of trolls there might as well be a giant fucking bridge over the post.

Well, part of the problem is that who a "Troll" is, is debatable. In general someone who had a strong opinion that is contrary to the majority of people participating in a discussion or response thread is viewed as a troll. Ditto for people telling you things you don't want to hear, especially if they are stated strongly, and happen to demolish what you wanted to believe to begin with. In general people respond with anger when they have strongly held beliefs challenged rather than even considering alternative viewpoints or *gasp* realizing that defining parts of their
personal beliefs might be entirely wrong.

The problem with a scientific study of this sort is that you need a real community to see trolls or what are being called trolls incorrectly, and see things unfold as they happen, to truely see the response. Scientists creating a simulated trolling and then telling people to just read it, as opposed to participating in the discussion, is kind of meaningless and shows no understanding of the phenomena.

It should also be noted that if your looking for evidence of the problems involved in internet communication, the things to consider are situations like a certain Bioware employee who made a grandiose statement about avoiding the forums because of how "toxic" they were. In general, when it's actually important, people will tend to simply remove themselves or ignore things they don't want to hear or consider (even when they need to, like in this case) rather than actually remaining glued to it to the point of changing for the positive or negative.

Look again with Bioware and what they did with "Dragon Age 2" they asked fairly early on in the dev process if it was okay for them to have a human hero, with no origin story, and a pre-defined name in exchange for increased voice acting. The answer was an overwhelming "no" from the community. Bioware generally ignored everything they didn't want to hear, listened only to positive feedback, and then told everyone they did what they wanted to do with community approval. On some levels, looking at later "toxic forums" comments it leads me to believe that they might simply be creating their own reality while becoming detached from the real thing, due to simply ignoring any negative feedback they get as the work of "trolls".

-

To be honest, if scientists are going to do useless intenet studies, I'd be more interested in finding out if any of the "Memes" created by 4 Chan or Anonymous can be seen to be working.

The point of a Meme is to basically burn something into the collective consciousness to the point where it doesn't go away and can actually be instinctively inheranted as a sort of ancesteral memory. An example of this would be to say take a group of people with a very distinctive style of society and arcetecture, steal their babies, drop the babies on an habitable planet to be raised by antiseptic robots and then see what they wind up building over a period of time. The idea of a meme is that if you were to say do it with Arabs their eventual buildings would match the existing MO of towers with domed tops, theocracy, and a general style of dress because this is how the people did it for thousands of years and the people would "remember" these things without actually remembering them consciously and develop along those lines. The same could apply to any group with a distinctive style ranging from Europeans and their style of arcetecture, to Asians, or whatever else. The idea features heavily in science fiction by way of justifying how someone might say visit planet seperated from the rest of spacefaring humans that fell into barbarity, rose from it, and then grew to almost exactly resemble some ancient civilization or other based on what the people were like or what group wound up dominating.

There have been all kinds of permutations of this over the years including "killer memes" that result in the destruction of those they infect, viruses that move through ancesteral memory, and similar things.

At any rate the joke with 4chan and Anonymous was that some of this stupidity was supposed to be circulated on such a high level and so heavily saturated that it would seep into the human consciousness through the wonder of the internet. Every time I hear someone talking about "old memes" or "memes they wish would die" they seem to kind of miss the point, and truthfully I've actually run into a few kids and stuff who have spouted or referanced memes without knowing the source or original context. When you consider even something as benign as Lolcats has wound up being everywhere for over a decade now you do have to wonder if The Internet is accelerating the process dramatically as some people theorized (which began the entire schtick).

That kind of a study might be more interesting, see how many kids recognize memes or think they seem vaguely familiar or "heard that somewhere, but don't remember where". Before they even really have unfettered net access.

Of course that would be a waste too, but better than trying to study trolling as a phenomena. That's almost as silly as people studying "cyber bullying". :P

Argh. After reading the original article.... It's rather annoying that it starts with an agenda. It starts with a decided idea on climate change. It even states how the people who deny it don't understand the science at all. Then it goes into the few paragraphs talking about what this article is about as if what the article here states is not the main idea of what the original article is. That aside, the ideas stated here are old idea. Furthermore, the link to the study is dead (ie. 404 not found). And then the article trolls the so called trolls, which leads me to believe they don't know what a troll is.

As far as the people who are knocking the potential for a scientific study on something that seems so obvious... that is what science is for. Science looks for definitive answers and doesn't take the face value of a given situation. Science involves testing and retesting to prove something. That isn't to say Kahneman and Tverski didn't prove trolling leads to trolling before trolling even existed, they did.

rollerfox88:
Feeling emotion is an effortful action, to do so occupies a portion of your working memory. This means you have less available "processing power" to sort through the information in the article, and so pay less attention/assign less meaning to it. This causes you to disregard any new information, which is why original beliefs are affirmed.

While I understand that its important to prop theories up with supporting evidence, there comes a point when there is already enough evidence (see practically all of Dan Kahnemans career) and scientists should spend their time researching something else.

Obviously I agree with you about Kahneman and Tverski's work. But your off base on the your original assertion by Kahneman and Tverski's standards. Emotion is the quick intuitive part of the brain, it's the effortless part of the brain that is using that. The rational slow part is lazy and doesn't want to be involved if it doesn't have to be. And it's the constant influx of emotion that trolling leads to that basically prevents rational thought from prevailing.

Baresark:
Argh. After reading the original article.... It's rather annoying that it starts with an agenda. It starts with a decided idea on climate change. It even states how the people who deny it don't understand the science at all. Then it goes into the few paragraphs talking about what this article is about as if what the article here states is not the main idea of what the original article is. That aside, the ideas stated here are old idea. Furthermore, the link to the study is dead (ie. 404 not found). And then the article trolls the so called trolls, which leads me to believe they don't know what a troll is.

As far as the people who are knocking the potential for a scientific study on something that seems so obvious... that is what science is for. Science looks for definitive answers and doesn't take the face value of a given situation. Science involves testing and retesting to prove something. That isn't to say Kahneman and Tverski didn't prove trolling leads to trolling before trolling even existed, they did.

rollerfox88:
Feeling emotion is an effortful action, to do so occupies a portion of your working memory. This means you have less available "processing power" to sort through the information in the article, and so pay less attention/assign less meaning to it. This causes you to disregard any new information, which is why original beliefs are affirmed.

While I understand that its important to prop theories up with supporting evidence, there comes a point when there is already enough evidence (see practically all of Dan Kahnemans career) and scientists should spend their time researching something else.

Obviously I agree with you about Kahneman and Tverski's work. But your off base on the your original assertion by Kahneman and Tverski's standards. Emotion is the quick intuitive part of the brain, it's the effortless part of the brain that is using that. The rational slow part is lazy and doesn't want to be involved if it doesn't have to be. And it's the constant influx of emotion that trolling leads to that basically prevents rational thought from prevailing.

Or, an alternative way of thinking about it is that emotion does cost effort, but is prioritised ahead of rational thought. If you have 100 brainz of processing power, lets say 20 is assigned to emotion at all times. When no other strains are present, that leaves 80 for thought, but if reading an article requires 40 brainz, emotion is likely to have more influence than it should. While I do agree for the most part with Kahneman, I dont think his "system one" should be considered completely unconscious and automatic.

kouriichi:
Professional Troll here, and i just want to say, you shouldnt lump us all in together. A lot of us classier trolls would never spam, "U MAD?", or aim for someones worst quality in a direct way. Some of us are so subtle you wont even notice it. Youve all had that moment where you have to ask yourself, "Did i just get trolled?", thats what a lot of us shoot for.

Idiots and Arses ruin everything. Trolls? Real trolls? Trolls that know blunt cursing and spamming the same thing isnt sportsmanlike? We highlight the problems.

Actually, I think so called "Real trolls" (Anyone who calls themselves a professional troll without actually working for a newspaper) are worse then the sub-par trolls you are talking about. Firstly, they misuse the term professional, which infuriates me. Secondly, with an idiot troll you can notice them immediately and move on with the debate. With someone like you (A self declared troll) it is much, much harder to move on with the debate because you are within the debate, deliberately derailing it and being a penis. What is worse for a debate, people in the background yelling "LOL U MAD BRO LOL HITLER IS AWESOME KEK" or people within the debate trying to derail it and infuriate you?

Sorry, either way you are being a penis.

OT: Trolls ruin everything. Huh. Next science will prove that I am a sexy beast or that smoking makes you look cool. Whats next, Captain Obvious?

Distance_warrior:

(In a calm helpful tone of voice)All you did with that argument is enforce his already held beliefs just as all his did was enforce yours. The real message of this study is that if you want someone to listen to you you need to be friendly. Using a condescending tone, excess hyperbole, veiled insults or standing on an absolute opinion will only cause them to become defensive and focus more on what they need to do to maintain their opinion and less on any genuine points they might have.

(Joking cheerfully) Hell you weren't even arguing against me and reading your post made me all the more sure of myself in my interpretation of the article.

Heh, while I was reading this post a little voice in the back of my head was wondering if you were an Elcor.

OT- I honestly just never understood the point of trolling (where my definition is people who participate in a discussion for the sole purpose of provoking the other participants or derailing the discussion). I would just consider people who get their jollies from that sort of thing bad people.

PS- If anyone remembers the original dictionary definition of trolling (real word), try using it in conversations with frequent internet users, then explain it to them after a minute of confused stares. It will entertain you, and improve their vocabulary. Everybody wins! Bonus points for using the fishing related definition.

We needed a study for this sort of thing? I assumed it was common knowledge

You know, while I'm not debating the article, there is one other interesting viewpoint to consider here: has anyone else noticed that trolls have a tendancy to bring other web users together into a unified front? Like, everytime a solitary troll shows up and causes trouble, all the other users around tend to work together to laugh him out of the room.

Navigate Youtube often enough and you tend to see this in abundance. I would actually submit that trolls have made the internet a better place overall, by giving users common enemies.

Captcha:

Finish this poem: For whom does the bell toll?

A: It tolls for thee.

Creepy captcha is creepy.

fapper plain:
Science apparently needs to prove everything, including that people respond to hostility with hostility.

I thought the point here was that trolls (in this sentence, I'm using trolls to mean 'inflammatory, reactionary asshats') make people more secure in their previously held beliefs and less likely to welcome contradictory evidence or new data? Despite everyone saying "no, DUH!" in this thread, I find that very interesting and honestly quite accurate.

I am also amused by the idea of somehow forwarding this study to the Conservapedia admin, to point out that their anti-liberal, anti-evolution and anti-everythingelsethatisn'tintheirspecificversionofthebible ranting is only pushing people further away from the views they're trying to espouse. The same goes for any hardcore fundie or atheist who'll go to a forum populated by their opposite number and post the stupid "there is no God/God is sending you to hell for not believing" bullshit - it'd be nice to have an actual scientific study to cite when informing them that they are achieving exactly the opposite of what they intended.

bigfatcarp93:
You know, while I'm not debating the article, there is one other interesting viewpoint to consider here: has anyone else noticed that trolls have a tendancy to bring other web users together into a unified front? Like, everytime a solitary troll shows up and causes trouble, all the other users around tend to work together to laugh him out of the room.

Yeah, but by then the damage is done. The thread is derailed and nobody is in a rational frame of mind to resurrect the discussion. Plus you get a whole bunch of people who only contribute to say "Hey, this guy is such a troll" and then leave again, which makes the majority of the posters in a thread hit-and-runners, and causes the troll (or just the person who doesn't agree with the majority opinion but is incapable of expressing their viewpoint like a rational human being) to react aggressively in response.

bigfatcarp93:
Captcha:

Finish this poem: For whom does the bell toll?

A: It tolls for thee.

Creepy captcha is creepy.

Ask not for whom the troll trolls...

He trolls for thee.

Rude or derogatory comments don't really get regarded as trolls a lot of the time. In fact it is easy to see that a lot of people who think that they are decent people fighting against trolls think that they have a free licence to be as rude and derogatory as they like with no consequence in terms of being a dick. Certainly it takes more than not liking some popular video game series or not liking the direction of some trend in gaming to be a troll. What is the point exactly in equating people who don't like something about Mass Effect to climate change deniers? It's almost like being a passive consumer who never complains is what you need to be to be a decent respectable person who does not poison the groupthink mind.

With experience you can build a thicker skin so you don't react over emotionally to certain types of language. In fact real seasoned trolls say that their mission is to train up people who they think are not emotionally insulated enough to deal with the world. If you can't deal with a troll then how can you deal with the sort of propaganda messages you get from people who really have some heavy duty experience and resources behind them.

I think this image summarizes how I feel about this

Science proves that trolls make everything bad?

image

Thanks Science!

Fanghawk:
Also, as always, not feeding the trolls would be a very good idea.

Didn't that entire study (and this article, for that matter) serve as one massive smörgåsbord buffet for all of trolldom?

I wonder if the scientists running this study factored in Penny Arcade's GIFT (Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory):
Regular Person + Anonymity + Audience = Fuckwad. They may have been generalizing, but that does explain trolls' behavior.

delroland:
Don't worry, I have my jar of Turkish miak; I'm good to go.

I was hoping someone else recognized Trantor the troll.

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