Monday, October 25, 2010

Internet Intelligence, Part Deuce: Dramatis Personae

After the [recent events] of cyberspace warfare madness, I went back through many of my old posts in a fit of nostalgia -- and paranoia over discarded words being used against me. Among the random bloggings, I found [this old gem of a jewel of a stone].

Rereading past drama is like trying to wear your baby clothes again. It just don't fit. But it did bring up a fun idea for some postable material for ya'll to peruse to your enjoyment!

I bring you.... (drumroll)

Internet Intelligence, Part Deuce: The Dramatis Personae!

Among the twisted wiles of the cyberwebs there exist creatures of fascination for us Saboteur Academics. Mythological in origin, these spectres haunt forums and blogs alike as Casper haunted Christina Ricci in that movie, or those twins in The Shining.

They are called trolls.

These are not fro-tastic cuddly wonders of plastic toydom, nor even the toll-collecting variety known to frequent certain big city bridges. These are a previously unknown breed in the history of the world: an example of cryptovolution -- the evolution of mythological entities from simple randomness.

Trolls are known to provide certain websites and blogsites with frequent visits (an act known as "stalking") where they then proceed to deliver textual excrement in large quantities (this is known as "flaming", the gerund of "to flame"), but are also known to spam, hate, and fix your spelling while talking about this one time they wetn off-topic to talk about themselves for ten paragraphs in the midst of flexing their godlike ab muscles.

In order to identify and combat these eCreeps, it is important to understand what distinguishes the various species of trolls. Trolls come in many varieties: flamer, spammer, hater, grammar-Nazi, drama-pig, and tough-guy.

Flamer: as briefly introduced above, flamers exist only to do one thing -- say lots of random angry shit. And by that I mean anything from, "FUCKYOUMOTHERFUCKINGCUNTBUCKETDUMPSTERDIVINGBITCH!!!!111!!11!1!11!!!1!!" to "GODDAMNPIECEOFSHIT IM GONN KIL UR FAMILY BITHCHOEASS!!!!!!!!!!!!!". Flamers are concerned with venting their frustrations about the world onto you. And they will. They will burn your blog/site to the ground like Tecumseh Sherman marching through the South -- only this time he's not going to be so nice. The only remedy for these blog-scorching verbal-pyros is to ban them.

Spammer: these trolls usually poor work-from-home mouse-clickers who would like to sell you natural herbal remedies for penis enlargement as well as cheap breast enhancement while you watch a flat screen LCD TV with HD! They are the lowest class of troll, having no power other than to annoy. Moderation is usually enough, as most spammers want to sell-sell-sell, and will move on when you don't buy. However, there are always more out there...

Hater: beware of these cyber-cesspool troglodytes, for they are a disease which only a combination combat-cocktail of moderation and banning can hope to eliminate. They are trolls with a personal ice-chip on their shoulders as big as the iceberg which sank the Titanic. And it's all for you. Haters hate; it's that simple. All you can do is quarantine them.

Grammar-Nazi: these unique trolls are typically faux-scholars and pseudo-intellectuals who read a dictionary once while in high school detention. Now they're out to teach you the ways of the English language while they play online Scrabble. Geebus P Cryst save you if a period is missing or a comma should be a dash. Frequently, grammar-Nazis don't actually practice good grammar themselves, and are extremely hostile to attempts to correct them. Moderation is the best policy, as grammar-Nazis have better things to do if you won't listen to their self-righteous corrections. (Note: grammar-Nazis also come in essay-writer varieties, who will literally write essays to prove you wrong. See [XKCD].)

Drama-pig: only an internet troll could turn a story about you into a 5-act play about them, complete with dramatic monologues and sexual intrigue. Drama-pigs are often found sticking their snouts into shared personal stories, remarking briefly on the situation before grandly sweeping into an all encompassing Greek Tragedy. No need for tissues -- they've got plenty -- but you may want a liberal use of moderation, and possibly banning, if the narcissistic dramatics continue.

Tough-guy: these cyberbullies tend to represent the population they attempt to repress. From supernerds playing at Olymic bodybuilders to e-thugs with fake gold-chains and plastic gats, tough-guy trolls are among the easiest to deal with, yet also the most lametastic. When faced with such a troll, simply laugh at their poseur fail and move on. Rather like a Harry Potter Dementor, they cannot stand the destructive power of ridicule, and will hide from it like vamps to sunlight.

Anyhoo, I hope this foray into cyberweb species was both informational, and cautionary. As Lewis Carroll spoke to Alice in Wonderland, "Beware the Jabberwocky."

For he is strong.


3 footnotes:

Mira said...

Fantastic post! Such a great analysis. I am trying to think of a group you missed, but I am not sure if there's any. Passive-aggressive type, perhaps? Not sure.

PS- Trolls on the first picture are so cute, though!

Zek J Evets said...

thanks! passive-aggressive might be its own category, but i'd probably just file them under flamer/hater, maybe as a mutation...

Anonymous said...

LOL Mira, I just complained about those trolls being scary!

I think there could be an additional category for chip-on-the-shoulder Chuck, which is almost a combo of hater and drama-pig (but with more malice and whining).