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What is trolling?

Discussion in 'Evaluating and Criticising Scientology' started by Emma, Aug 22, 2019.

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  1. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    Wikipedia says:

    Quoting from that:

    It also says:
    It seems to be subjective. One man's troll is another man's thought provoker.
    AryaZ likes this.
  2. He-man

    He-man Hero extraordinary

    Thought provocing! Isn't it? :hide:
  3. I told you I was trouble

    I told you I was trouble Suspended animation

    We probably would have called it deliberate teasing, provoking or even attempted (and very real) bullying before the advent of the internet, the main message (from a true troll) always seems to contain some form of spite or attempted put-downs though.

    I think it very much depends on the overall vibe and true purpose of the poster and that's usually easy to spot, especially with the written word.

    A troll will often liven the place up and as long as too much damage isn't being done I suppose it does no harm letting one in for a while, especially if there's a chance that they will settle down and relax eventually.

    Leland likes this.
  4. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    President Trump is the greatest leader ever in the history of the free world! :yes:

    There's an example of trolling for you. :stir: :biggrin:


    And just to be clear, I do not believe that statement at all! :no:
    It was just one example of many different types of trolling that can be done.
    If was off-topic, and would clearly upset some people if I posted it for real.

    But what if I truly did believe what I wrote? Would it still be trolling then?
    How about if I posted it multiple times a day in multiple threads?

    In my view, yes, it would be trolling, regardless of whether I was intentionally trying to upset people or not, especially if I continued to do it after seeing that it did upset people on a regular basis. And even if some people loved the postings and didn't consider it trolling, it IS still trolling IMO.

    I don't agree that application of the term is always subjective. The very best trolling will split a community, leaving some to believe it's trolling and others not.
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019
    Tanchi, Lurker5, freethinker and 2 others like this.
  5. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    No, this is an example of you having an incorrect opinion. The Department for the Correction of Incorrect Opinions has come to a decision and you will be fined $0.02. :bleh:

    It depends on what you mean. If your negative opinion of the church of Scientology was the same post after post, day after day, years after year, are you trolling? No, I don't think so. It's your opinion and one shared by most people here. However what if your opinion of Scientology was a positive one, and you posted that opinion post after post, day after day. Is that trolling? That's the subjective bit.

    If you continued to ask the same question, over and over like "Was Ron a Gypsy?" and it had been answered 100 times, and you still kept asking it, I'd probably throw all your posts into one thread, tell you to go look at the 100 times this had been answered and to get over yourself. If you kept at it I'd just delete the noise.

    If the posts were all about how great Trump is, I'd probably start a thread called "President Trump", put it in the Politics section, put it in the members only section and hide it from latest posts button! :brow:
    Well herein lies the problem. I have to make a choice which kind of board I want. One that sticks to a theme, doesn't get very argy-bargy and everyone agrees on pretty much everything. I think that's how it's been for a while now. It works well, if not a little dull at times.

    Or do I want a board where any opinion about anything is ok to voice?

    The first option gives us a stable community where not much is talked about in the public section, but where all the action is in the members only/politics section. Interesting for some, not so much for others. People hang around for those threads only and don't contribute much to the other threads. It's been said so enough times for me to take notice ("I'm sick of Scientology, only here for the politics"). And once that gets boring for them, they wander off.

    The second option gives us a less stable community, I agree. But it is also a much more lively community. It's less sedate, not as comfortable and not as familiar at times.

    Can we have it all? Probably not, so I have to choose.

    All I can do is what I think is best. So I will moderate for insults or threats as best I can. Any kind of repetitive "Was Ron a gypsy" I'll throw in one thread or delete, I'll allow all sorts of opinions in the politics section (haven't I done that already? - You know I hate Trump and talking about Trump but I've allowed it despite how I personally feel about it) and all sorts of opinions in every section of the board.

    That's how I can live with the board remaining live.
  6. freethinker

    freethinker Sponsor

    That is key, repetitiveness.
  7. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    I can say that I've heard that Trump is amazing 10000000000 times but I'm yet to be convinced.
  8. freethinker

    freethinker Sponsor

    I wouldn't categorize him as amazing and he isn't doing everything he has done alone. There are a few things he has done and is doing that piss me off but no one is mentioning those things, instead they chant racist.
    Enthetan likes this.
  9. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    Yes, it IS a much more lively community. No one can argue with that. :D

    And I certainly am not interested in participating in a "forum" where everyone agrees with each other. I'm sure that that's been a contributing factor as to why I (and some others) tend to stay away from the Scientology related threads. It IS dull.

    But in time, some will also stay away from the threads when they encounter a certain poster who is permitted to respond to reasonable questions by either:
    1) Ignoring the the question.
    2) Changing the subject without answering the question.
    3) Ignoring the question but responding with a paragraph or two with ad hominem comments directed at the one asking it.
    4) Using various other logical fallacies like Strawman argument, Red Herrings, etc., to shift subject off important questions he's being asked.

    Attempting to engage someone in a discussion when they repeatedly respond in that fashion is pretty frustrating, and leads me to believe that they have no intention to engage in an honest exchange.

    And some won't stay here long-term engaged in a discussion after encountering such tactics over and over. They'll eventually head for the exits and some will stay away.

    When someone churns out multiple insults a day and faces no negative consequences (other than having some of them deleted), there's not a lot of motivation for that person to change their behavior.

    And when some people are insulted they tend to respond in kind. I'm sure I've been guilty myself of that at times.
    And those type of exchanges will drive people away as well.

    Alanzo may have the best of intentions, but I believe it also accomplishes some of OSA's objectives for forums such as this.

    Here is what Tory said are their Top 3 Goals (which she learned about while being part of the program OSA uses to handle forums of this nature):

    1) DISTRACT off of ANY "HOT" topic..especially if it's re Hubbard, DM or the "church" sekret activities.

    2) DEGRADE any and all activists they do NOT want listened to, which most certainly includes "Divide and Conquer". (Get the critics fighting amongst each other was a KEY goal.... Yaude had created 10 different identities. He told me: "I have been on the Net since the DAY ARS began".(the 1st Newsgroup where Scientologists were posting things they did not want known). Yaude would play these identities one against the other until FINALLY a "real critic" would bite. Once that happened, he'd leap up: BINGO! I asked, "Bingo what?" He: "Once a real critic bites...we're set. They'll be fighting amongst each other for days, if not weeks: Let's go EAT" <<< True story.

    3) "SLIME THE AREA SO NO ONE WANTS TO EVEN PUT THEIR NAME THERE". (If you don't think this is possible, go check out ARS: a wasteland. OCMB--used to be "hot" only a few post there).
  10. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    Oh I know. There is probably a million times I should have moderated certain posters.

    Let's see what Hoaxy says about allowing political discussion:

    He wasn't happy when I said that I wished politics wasn't a focus on ESMB.

    Why should this be any different when the focus is Scientology.
  11. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    I know that's Tory's mantra and that she'd prefer it if there was never an argument. But if we stick to that, and we just go limp and allow all sorts of crap to go on because we daren't criticise our own, then we are slaves again.
  12. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    I'm not here to amass people. I just want a discussion board. People are free to stay, put people on ignore, post on only certain threads etc. I can't please everyone.

    Mick Wenlock told me something 10 years ago. I didn't listen. He told me you can't please everyone and why the fuck should you. Build a board you want to participate in and people will post or not. Don't try to please everyone, you can't.
    Bill, Lurker5, Mick Wenlock and 2 others like this.
  13. strativarius

    strativarius Inveterate gnashnab & snoutband

    Shouldn't this be in the 'ESMB Unpopular Opinions' thread? :biggrin:

    That's assuming you're a Brit, European, Aussie etc etc...
  14. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    Not for this board.
  15. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    If he comes back I'll sure he'll have something to say. :D

    First of all, I'm a big proponent of freedom of speech, and I appreciate that you've allowed discussion of certain off-topic subjects when you personally are disgusted by them. Many people wouldn't do such a thing.

    One of the American "founding fathers" wrote (and with which I agree with):
    “If freedom of speech is taken away,
    then dumb and silent we may be led,
    like sheep to the slaughter.”

    The lack of freedom of speech inside CoS was a major contributing factor as to why many of us stayed in as long as we did. We couldn't discuss many things amongst ourselves. Our "case", our OT abilities we were failing to acquire, how we truly felt about disconnection, fair game, and other policies. And many more topics were forbidden to discuss with our fellow Scientologists.

    That said, there are legitimate reasons that freedom of speech is not absolute, nor should it be, either on the forum or in society in general.
    Slander & libel, both of which fall under 'defamation of character' are criminal offenses in some jurisdictions. And there is a distinction between legitimate criticism and slander. Gaslighting, whether legal or not, is a form of intimidation or psychological abuse. IMO, it should not fall within anyone's right of freedom of speech.
    tesseract and Infinite like this.
  16. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    I agree, but do you think you could let me decide, even for a little bit, what is slander and what isn't? I promise the sky won't fall in.

    Don't get me started on allowing intimidating posts. Let's just not go there. Please.
    Bill likes this.
  17. Alanzo

    Alanzo Bardo Tulpa

    Assigning insincerity to someone you disagree with is a way to reduce the cognitive dissonance you feel when they challenge your beliefs.

    "They're being paid!" is what BOTH scientologists and anti scientologists say to dismiss inconvenient facts coming from the enemy tribe.

    Scientology protesters are always being paid by Big Pharma. And I hear that osa has paid me TONS of money to criticize Tony Ortega and Mike Rinder.

    If Scientology protesters sincerely believed what their protest signs said, you'd have to move on to calling them trolls in order to keep their ideas from sinking in.

    Confronting counterfactual information is uncomfortable for a human being. You've got to do something to keep from considering the enemy's ideas and being banished from your group.
  18. F.Bullbait

    F.Bullbait Oh, a wise guy,eh?

    A troll is the other guy.

    I don't like the new grumpy Emma pic, BTW.
    Emma likes this.
  19. Emma

    Emma Con te partirò Administrator

    I just can't find a nice one of her the moment she turned into murdering ruthless conqueror. :D
  20. Type4_PTS

    Type4_PTS Diamond Invictus SP

    It aligns with some of the known objectives of OSA. I have no reason to doubt Tory's account of what she experienced and witnessed.

    Again, I'm not opposed to "criticizing our own." All of us can be criticized. Unlike the narrative that's been painted by Alanzo, I don't have any tribal leaders. I don't follow Mike Rinder, Tony O, Karen, or anyone else. I live a 30 minute or so drive from Mike, never met the man and never spoke to him, even when he and I were in the same room some years ago (at Flag Down).

    I just believe there's a distinction between criticizing one of our own and going to war against them. Only criticizing someone, doing it for months or years at a time, embedding your posts with logical fallacies to make the target seem worse than they are, ignoring anything obviously positive they've done or said, all that is more like going to war.

    If someone is "one of your own" wouldn't it best serve them and the community to also acknowledge some of the positive things in addition to the criticism?

    When you only write negative things, utilizing logical fallacies, making it worse than it really is, and ignore all the positive, that is how the CoS writes SP Declare Orders on their enemies, isn't it?
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019