I referenced a news article in a Swedish newspaper about this subject some time back. I've been trying to track down more information on the company and haven't found anything. It may be that South Park is taking off on this Swedish television show that tracks down Trolls.
I'd be glad to spend a little money with a company like this, and usually South Park follows real world events pretty closely in their lampoons. If anybody knows anything more about this I'd appreciate hearing from them.
I have one "basic" troll who writes comments like " You are a #*^@&. The people who read your blog are the *#@&&^& *#^@% in the world. Why don't you all die!"
This is easy to deal with, you just delete the comments.
But there are others with a little more intelligence. They try to get on the blog by posting seemingly benign comments designed to get others to respond, or to worry the people whose comments they are responding to. I had one of those recently that got by me, and I went back and deleted it once I realized what had happened.
Then you get the "argumentative" attack, where someone will start out by being critical of a post or comment, but not in an offensive way. Once they get a "thread" going they start egging people on, so that they themselves are not being offensive, but things get out of hand and legitimate people who are posting comments start going after each other. This happened in a big way on my old blog and that particular episode was one reason I shut it down.
Sometimes, I might not post a "real" comment that was legitimate, because it parallels the troll procedure too closely. I'd rather err on the side of caution in those circumstances though.
Most European countries have laws against Trolling. Some of these are 'hate speech" laws. We don't have these here yet because free speech is guaranteed under the constitution (though the courts have been happy to limit it, and if Hillary gets in we can kiss it goodbye.) So, in most of Europe, if a troll gets on your blog and uses language that can be construed as "inciting hate" against a wide range of protected groups, the troll can wind up in jail. New laws specifically addressing trolls have come on line in England, for instance. You can't modify a picture of an individual in order to embarrass or degrade them. You can't make salacious or malicious statements about individuals with an intent to do them psychological harm.
I'm not all that enthusiastic about European style limitations on free speech, since that can backfire on everybody and be used by the government to shut everyone up. But I think it's coming here to some degree, before much longer.
Of course, somebody has to file a complaint and the prosecutors have to be willing to take the case, but I just read an article about ten trolls who are doing time or under legal restraint, and some of them were in America.
So, if this new company actually exists, it may be a lot less entertaining for the sociopaths out there who like to try to stir things up.
Thought for the Day:
"Watch money. Money is the barometer of a society’s
virtue. When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion —
when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men
who produce nothing — when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not
in goods, but in favors — when you see that men get richer by graft and by
pull, than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect
them against you — when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming
a self-sacrifice — you may know that your society is doomed.”
---philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand (1905-1982)
I got the quote above from a friend by email today.
I haven't written about the ferrets in awhile. Percy is doing great. He's loving the mountain top and not living in a cage. Spike has adrenal disease, and there isn't anything you can do about that except to ameliorate the disease with Melatonin, which we are doing. He has a good quality of life and goes out everyday for his walk in the meadow. Once the election is over, and I don't get so wrapped up in that , I'll put some pictures of the guys on here.
|art by Stef|