Congressional Rep Wants To Put Internet Trolls In Jail

from the well,-that's-an-idea dept

Last year, the lawsuit against Lori Drew got plenty of attention. It involved the sad story of a girl, Megan Meier, who ended up killing herself after a “friend” she met on MySpace ended their friendship in a rather rude fashion. It later turned out that the “friend” wasn’t a real person, but a made up individual, created by a former friend of the girl, that girl’s mother (Lori) and an employee of Lori created the person (they claim) as a way of finding out what Meghan was saying about Lori’s daughter. The whole story is quite sad, obviously, and suggests incredibly poor judgment on Lori’s part. However, was it illegal? The initial analysis was not at all. However, prosecutors then twisted computer hacking laws to charge her, and she was eventually found guilty of misdemeanor computer hacking for creating a fake person on MySpace. This ruling was troubling for a variety of reasons, including the fact that it’s now quite easy to make anyone a criminal via terms of service. Also, the fact that it actually is likely to put more kids at risk.

That particular case was distorted by a few issues, involving the fact that Lori was an adult while Meghan was a child. If the MySpace friend “Josh” had been a real teen, would the same outrage have happened? I had a friend in high school kill himself after his girlfriend dumped him. Should she have been charged with a crime?

However, with emotional cases, come bad legal precedents and bad laws. Missouri (where this happened) already rushed through an “online harassment” law, and now it looks like we may get the federal equivalent. Rep. Linda Sanchez has introduced a cyberbullying law (named after Meier) that could put people in jail for up to two years for online communications “with the intent to coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person… to support severe, repeated, and hostile behavior.”

Yes, this effectively makes online trolling a crime. It’s difficult to see how this gets past even the most basic First Amendment review, but that won’t stop politicians from grandstanding over it.

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Comments on “Congressional Rep Wants To Put Internet Trolls In Jail”

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Intentional Coward says:

Laws should not be this subjective

“with the intent to coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person… to support severe, repeated, and hostile behavior.”

I wonder if doing this in person is any different. If not, there is every likelihood that the Mormons will go to prison for their Prop-8 propaganda hate-crimes.

Now THIS… THIS is trolling! 🙂

egandb says:

Re: Laws should not be this subjective

FYI, Intentional Coward, you have are grossly ignorant. The Mormons (and Church in general) did not, nor have not, been involved in your so-called “Prop-8 propaganda hate-crimes.” They merely exercised their “First Amendment” rights. You’d better do your homework before you post, ya friggin’ idiot.

FatCat says:

Re: Good luck with that

god, she is a fat triple chin toad!!!!

Megan’s father should have payed that cunt Lori a visit and put an end to her/it then and there.
more people should handle their problems the way we do it here in Texas, don’t have much use for lawyers and all the BS that goes with them.

it is a terrible terrible shame that Megan thought that she only had one way to deal with any problem, it’s horrible when a child dies…and that cunt Lori probably doesn’t even give it a second thought.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

It’s despicable. It’s horrible. It makes me want to puke. But she DIDN’T BREAK ANY LAWS.

I would think it would have been better trying to inform everyone possible of what her phone number, home address, email addresses are so she can constantly get hate mail and calls from people all over the world telling her what they think about her.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: Re:

If Megan was your kid, would you still feel ok with what Lori Drew did?

Let’s try reading again. I said it was terrible what she did, but that doesn’t mean she broke the law… and no matter how terrible what she did may have been, twisting an entirely different law around is hugely problematic.

Besides, there’s no definite link between Drew (who didn’t even write the messages in question!) and Megan’s decision to kill herself.

People kill themselves all the time — and yes, it’s quite tragic. But do you really want to lock up anyone who was mean to someone who killed themselves? And do you really want to twist the laws to make that possible?

Making it an emotional argument “what if it was your kid” is really troubling. If it were my kid, I’d be absolutely devastated. But I wouldn’t want to send everyone who was mean to my kid to jail.

Do you not see the trouble of charging someone with a crime for the actions of someone else?

R. Miles says:

Re: Re: Re:

People kill themselves all the time — and yes, it’s quite tragic.
For those who discuss “feelings” get ready to get pissed with my reply.

Because, I don’t see this as tragic. If anything, I wish more people would take this approach.

Why? I guess many of you haven’t been surrounded by this type of person. I’m not talking about those who seek help and turn their lives around.

I’m talking about people like Megan, who obviously didn’t care to apply herself despite the help offered.

And while my statement may seem mean, I dare a single one of you to try and convince me you can change the mind of someone who isn’t going to listen.

Hell, the comments on this very site should be clear enough proof for you.

She’s gone. Boo freaking hoo. Life moves on to those who do want help to change their lives, and can be evident by seeing them in counseling rather than looking for “help” on an online website.

Good riddance, Megan. Thanks to you, you’re causing more problems for the rest of us.

Anonymous Coward says:

The Drew case wasn’t a case of peers – it was an adult versus a youth. That’s wrong and needs to be addressed in that context, not in a general “harassment” law.

Would it have been different in the “guy” had really been a teen and not an adult’s women out to intentionally mislead a teenage girl? I’m only guessing, but I suspect the outcome would have been different. Though maybe not: if the guilty or not guilty verdict were based solely on emotional impact, it might still have come out the same.

Also…two years seems a little steep for someone dropping by a blog and leaving a stupid reply (troll).

Techcritic says:

Have we lost our humanity? Perhaps the ultimate laws that charged Lori were “twisted”, but justice was done in the end. The ultimate problem is that we don’t have enough laws (very clearly defined) regulating the internet. If someone wants to harass someone online they should have the guts to say who they are, and the person being harassed should be able to obtain their information to defend themselves. In any event, we are lacking some serious laws online. People can disparage others online, post false information or shocking pictures and hide behind anonymity while taking no responsibility for the ultimate outcome to someone’s reputation – or in this case emotional distress which led to suicide. We have a long way to go in regulating people’s privacy and conduct online, but the Cyberbullying Law is certainly a start.

Tgeigs says:

Re: Re:

What in the sweet hell are you talking about? Do you really believe that we have a problem in American culture defined by a LACK of laws? There is nothing wrong with anonymity, and people do NOT have the right to know who their accuser is online.

The only law that needs to be enacted is the “Tgeigs says stop being a bunch of easily upset emotional vaginas Act of 2009”. I can go into further details if you like, but it basically says that just because someone says something you don’t like doesn’t mean you have to pay any attention to it, regardless of the forum.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

The problem is where do you draw the line. You can be considered a troll and should be locked up for two years. It deeply angers me that you are willing to toss out reason and logical thinking to imprison people you DON’T LIKE.

We can’t imprison people just because they are assholes and we don’t like them.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Justice was not done. Lori did not intend to kill Megan. Lori didn’t intend anything. She suspected Megan of bullying her own daughter, and constructed a false peer to find out if it was true; when it didn’t lead anywhere, she ended the ruse. Lori wasn’t even the one who ended the “relationship,” her employee did. But Lori is the one who was punished, in court and in the public eye. A girl killed herself for stupid reasons, and a mob lynched the first one they could get their hands on. That is what’s sickening.

chris (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Have we lost our humanity?

the internet destroyed our humanity years ago.

want proof? browse for ten minutes. the internet isn’t safe for decent people. they would be better off doing something… anything… else.

Perhaps the ultimate laws that charged Lori were “twisted”, but justice was done in the end.

no, it wasn’t. megan is dead because her parents didn’t teach her how to protect herself online. internet mob justice would have seen to it that lori drew’s life was ruined without any help from the law. and if that failed there is always the great american past time: the civil suit.

using the law in this way is reprehensible, not because it is wrong, but because it is an absolute waste of time and resources. lori drew got busted, and these laws might stop a couple of people in the beginning, but then the real trouble will start.

The ultimate problem is that we don’t have enough laws (very clearly defined) regulating the internet. If someone wants to harass someone online they should have the guts to say who they are, and the person being harassed should be able to obtain their information to defend themselves.

no, the ultimate problem is that people are painfully ignorant about just how dangerous the internet is. it’s way more dangerous than the real world and it’s way harder to protect yourself. no amount of laws will prevent that. idiots like megan’s parents need to take some responsibility for themselves and their children.

if someone the sufficient skill and motivation wants you to suffer, you WILL suffer. there is no force on earth that can prevent that. all the law will do produce unintended consequences.

In any event, we are lacking some serious laws online. People can disparage others online, post false information or shocking pictures and hide behind anonymity while taking no responsibility for the ultimate outcome to someone’s reputation – or in this case emotional distress which led to suicide.

you have no idea how the internet works or how the people that use it operate, do you? censorship and regulation will always be circumvented. always. so go ahead and endorse a bunch of laws, but they will do you no good.

we passed a bunch of laws against spam, how’s that working out for you? all it did was drive the spammers further underground, making it even harder for service providers to fight them. good job congress!

the chinese can’t contain the internet and they have the resources and motivation to do so, what makes you think the federal government has any chance of success?

laws against bullying will not work. they will waste taxpayer funds and deliver absolutely no results other than inconveniences to legitimate users, and maybe a re-election.

i guarantee you the only “bullies” caught and punished with this law will be some grandmothers and a couple of 10 year olds who are victims of unintended consequences.

We have a long way to go in regulating people’s privacy and conduct online, but the Cyberbullying Law is certainly a start.

regulating anything on the internet is physically impossible. it simply cannot be done.

for every step that you take and every measure that you implement if it doesn’t fail on it’s own, there WILL be a workaround within minutes. that is a mathematical certainty.

the government can’t even protect it’s own secrets from the chinese, what on earth makes you think they can protect you or your children from bullies?

Jason says:

Sorry for the length

1st off I want to say that politicians in general are trash, secondly I cant find the correct ground on this issue, I am all for less government, less oversight, but this young girl (Meghan)was my neighbor, I cant get past this as I have a 12 year old daughter and have listened to how horrible girls in general are to each other at that age, boys tend to forget thank god! I guess I just cant get past a mother taking such extreme measures, IMO i believe Lori was doing much more than looking into what others were saying about her daughter….. She had intent in her heart to rectify what she felt Megan said about her daughter. I too on many occasions have nearly driven to a home to defend my daughter but resisted and tried to help her deal with it. I feel it is our obligation as parents to teacher our children how to effectively deal this issues as children, we cannot and should not jump into their lives at that level……teach, mentor, PARENT!!! I just keep thinking what if NO parents got involved in this, Megan and Lori’s daughter may have not liked each, hell they may have even had a fight, but Megan would be alive, & Lori would not have been on trial and sentenced. Kids forget parents hold grudges.

Lori’s actions should be perfectly legal, abominably poor judgment. I guess Lori has shown she is incapable of guiding her daughter to use good judgment, and I can only presume she too felt no responsibility to display any. So I guess i think she is NOT Guilty but should be put in jail for the rest of her life……..

Lee (profile) says:

Cyber Bullying my A$$

If your kid is so close to the edge that someone calling them a c*nt, f*g, fat or ugly online is going to push them to suicide, or into pulling another Columbine, no law is going to help them.

I am so sick of this “for the childrens” bullshit.

As a kid, I was tormented verbally and physically. I used to make myself throw up so I didn’t have to go to school and face it. But I survived, I didn’t kill myself or blow up my school or kill the offenders.

Hell, I’ve read the First Amendment up and down and nowhere does it say I have to give a crap about your tender little feelings.

yozoo says:

We need to get REAL

There is a large difference between bullying (which has a physical form, is painful and in very extreme circumstances can cause real physical damage to a person) which of course at some point is assault and so needs no “special” laws, and “cyber” (which is a euphemism for NOT REAL) Bullying. While this Drew lady was disgusting and she deserves our contempt, I don’t believe she is too be blamed criminally for the suicide of another (and even if she were, there are already laws that would be applicable with depraved indifference clauses, etc). “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words can NEVER hurt me”, is exactly how the law should view this type of incident. To take things that do not cause physical damage to a person and elevate them to the criminality of acts that do, is just illogical and in the end blurs our fundamental divisions of speech and behavior.

Stew says:

Probably an Over-Reaction

It’s very hard to come up with anything to say in Lori Drew’s defense. She is undoubtedly a repugnant and vicious person. I also believe that she bears a good share of the responsibility for Megan Meier’s death. Her conviction may have been legally questionable, but it really didn’t punish her enough as far as I’m concerned.

HOWEVER: This law is as ill-conceived as the majority of the “cyber” laws that come out in reaction to various over-blown incidents. It’s over-broad and would almost certainly have a chilling effect on free speech.

The really stupid thing is this: Why the hell is there any need for a law that forbids this kind of behaviour >online

Allen Awesome says:

Politicians make me puke

I am so sick of politics and politicians posturing here on the net. I am particularly disgusted with the clowns in Congress pushing out bill after bill as if they actually had a clue. A single incident does not constitute drastic blanket change. And, corrupt DA’s should be disbarred then sent to Vlad the Impaler. Gawd., how I long for the old days of Nukes & Blue Screens of Death when one needed more intelligence then just enough to push an ON button to get here.

TECHNOFORCE (user link) says:

Cyberbullying... Get a Life

Yes, I am for laws regarding cyberbullying. I myself have been a victim for the past 3 years. I have had my identity stolen, my computer hacked, my emails monitored and jobs were LOST because of this person. I have tried on several attempts to alert someone and they dismissed it but now, that there is a name for this crime something should be done against these people. I have a person that I suspect but I do not know him by name only by the company that he works for and I have contacted them and the company informed me that they are investigating the problem.

This person is a technical “GENIUS” and is able to tape into my home appliances, my car radio, and he has followed me to all of the jobs that I have over the last 3 years. He has obtained my email address and he has sent out photos of me to my employers. I have been to questioned by me employers regarding my after 5 activies and why I could not get to work on time. He is on this computer right now. And if this message does not get to you I will know why.

And to those of you that have stated this is NOT a crime. You have not been a victim of this such childish schoolyard behaviour. The person or person(s) doing this should themselves go through it. What one sees as innocent fun others see has not so funny and it does hurt and harm. Megan killed herself. And she was only a child of 13. And a grown person with children of their own should not be going aroung bullying someone. Group yourself. As in the words of the song by Michael Jackson “THE MAN IN THE MIRROR” Check yourself first, before you (1) sign on the a computer, (2) script some negative words and (3)press send. As and adult you had 3 opportunities to say NO, I am not going to do this what if someone did this to my child.

meh says:


Well what is a troll? It’s just an internet slang, like Jew is for Nazi’s and Nigger is for the KKK.

Sometimes I troll, I admit it.

But a lot of times I get banned even when I’m not really trolling.

this would be a stupid law because you’re going to fill up the prisons with a lot of people who did nothing more than offend some stuck up prick on the internet.

d says:

sordidguy some idiot/man/adult on aol is following me & other users on posts and sites under different accounts making threats & calling people names etc. I did report him for stalking in his mind he thinks he’s not stalking even though he follows people on blogs under different accounts pretending to be a woman then a man. What the he** is wrong with this guy? He even makes fun of gays on boards. He is a lowlife piece of shi* in my book. And in need of mental help looks like. He laughed when people reported him he thinks he can’t be found. He has aol. I am done with him. Cause he can’t take a hint of when to stop or anything. This guy is physco and mean. How can he post rants at people he don’t know & Post hate crimes on sites . If he’s against gays he needs to keep it to himself. Do us a favor sord guy go away your like a bad dream that can’t go away you troll. And I know for a fact you are adult such a sad/sick person as well. I also found he has 2 or 3 friends on youtube he says how I don’t have friends i’m low life yeah buddy I have more friends then you. This man must be dumb or a mental case.

D says:

If you are dealing with people like this report them to the authorities they won’t stop . They will stop when they know that it is the law and they can be tracked down and arrested. Threats etc. does no good more charges against them. Trolls are not the smarest people sorry after 7 or 8 months of dealing with a loon going on different accounts following me & other users and making fun of people I figured he was not to bright. And we had enough of his crap making fun of people of race, gay or not gay, height what they look like, kids, etc….

D says:

Lock there coward/loon behinds up. They’ll quit that & learn a hard lesson. The internet is made to talk look up stuff even play games oh not now days way to many trolls . People who have no life in other words. Adults should know better and right from wrong or was this woman’s brain not fully there & still is not? Kids I can understand but report them then they can get banned off certain sites.Kids brains and not fully developed still parents need to tell them it’s wrong. If the parents are in on it then the family needs mental help.

D says:


Yeah um….. Calling people names is not trolling/bullying? Before you call people trolls & names may wanna look at your comment/comments as well. That’s just horrible to call people any name. If you don’t know what it really means then don’t use it online. You know nothing about people online. Trolls also will say stuff like you posted. So watch what you type. I know some comments maybe and are hateful those people are have no life or heart then just ignore those types they just show all people online they have no respect for themself if they did they would show respect for the teen girl who killed herself over this.

Anonymous Coward says:

by Anonymous Coward
The more humans that kill themselves the better the Earth will be!



Your comments….. You should be proud of yourself for such foolish/downright disgusting comments on here. How old are you 12? You should know better.If people looked you up & found out who you were you could be reported. I find your comments to be sick.

annoymous says:

Stop playing victims. No one believes you trolls expect a few stupid people like you . Trolls have rage ! And are immature. It makes you wonder why adults go so far to troll? How immature & crazy ! I read studies on trolls there all nuts & cowards in real-life .Just ignore & report. Because they are hidden behinf a computer they think they can’t be traced. They can. Most don’t live in reality. And also there more of a little bitch when there computers are taken away !

unknowen says:

If a kid goes off on another kid he could be a bully or nuts. Either way knock the crap out of them. I was taught if a kid runs there mouth knock the crap out of them. Each time they ran though. They can run there mouth for sure but can’t fight. All bullies are cowards. If you get a hit they’ll learn twice not to mess with you. Some kid quit school after other kids threatend him in my school over him bullying people. He had some issues. He just was not a bully. He needed locked up & Some help. Most do. Others not so much they just need a good butt kicking. I only dealed with 2 people in my life I had trouble with not long though. And 1 online troll-stalker. These people need jailed or get there ass kicked there choice.l

unknowen says:

Lori Drew is an adult though & Knows better. Only way she can’t tell right from wrong is if she’s slow or crazy. I don’t think she’s slow. She’s crazy ! Everyone out there knows about her & Knows her as a coward & pure trash now like other online trolls. If you look up things on them these people are mental. I figured that out long ago though when I seen what they posted on people’s blogs & websites. I don’t think all are mental. I do think some don’t know right from wrong. Others might not be fully mature or have a low iq level. Just ignore & Report.

unknown says:

Nine !!!!!

Don’t put the ……

du bist doof” or “du bist blöd trolls in jail !!!!!!!!! They belong in a big hospitial ! And let people deal with them. There are people out there who would love too deal with trolls !!!!!!!!!!!!! They are a waste & waste of tax payers money. If they can’t play nice put them in a mental hospitial. If they never been & Seen one they’ll think twice !!!!!!!!!!! Esp. the younger one’s out there ! I do think they are a big waste of society. Alot of people do so. All should not be in jails anyway they are crowded already. There are other ways of handling these twisted mind freaks.

unknown says:

And not everyone who’s a mean person online is a troll. There are just plain crazies who attack you for any reason they feel they need to attack you over true of false and 90 % of the time it’s false !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Be careful people. World is crazy. The internet is much more crazy & gonna get worse. We just need to start reporting people our kids or anyone that has problems with. Like today example some guy kept calling women on the net cunts & bitches. People’s like oh he’s a butthead & has no manners. No most-like he’s insane. I was shocked. Did it get to me? No. You can’t let stuff like that get to you. You don’t know who you are talking to. And some show how crazy they are others don’t till later or it’s late. You just need to report these cowards. They are cowards/punks. They are scared to say it to people’s faces. We also must understand why they do this was they abused or bullied themself ? Or just simply crazy. Either way there is no excuse for it. Some people can’t control it or themself. Those types really need to be reported a.s.a.p. & out of society & locked up. They are much more dangerous. And those who show how mean they are & attack you. Really need mental help.

unknown says:

sordidguy I was just reading up on this guy. He’s a troll alright. He lies & bashes everyone just trying to start fights. He’s got a buddy online & might be him. Who becomes racist etc. online towards people & He agrees to it. Then when somebody uses them therm gay or is racist. He gets mad & reports them to net services or whines about it. Were talking about a 50 year old person. He acts about 15. Unstable would be the word !!!!!!! No one believes him. Blogs going back to 06 nobody believed his lies. They still don.t Now he’s going to police etc. They don’t believe him either. What a shame. You lie in a 4 year period online & mostly on one account & a few others . No one will believe you. What catches him is he re-peats or has the same things in all accounts. Even goes on 2-3 at the same time everyone knows it’s him. Go & tell mommy . Cyber cry baby might be a good name for him since he snitches on others & trys to start fights then whines when they say something back lol. I hate trolls. They are the most dumbest people on earth & always get caught. Look at his youtube 4 friends because he posts stuff on other people’s pages that is uncalled for and now he posts bite me because they throw comments back on there. I don’t think this person relizes he’s trolling.

unknown says:

I seen sordidguy ‘s posts And reported them. You got trolls everywhere. He is hated & one of the worse one’s on aol & youtube . He would come on posts & follow people stalk and harass them. If he thinks he’s loved he’s sadly crazy and making a huge mistake. He loves fights & to stir up rumors online about people. were t6alking about a 50 year old man who trolls. Get this ! he’s had so many reports most sites done hit delete on his stuff & It is no longer online. He’s banned for a while. Everyone calls him stupid. Reality is he’s a nutjob and one who could just be an online predator. He accuses people of false stuff like that. So I wonder if this dude is really over weight and a predator since he wants to accuse everyone of being so on websites. Even though he has no idea about them. Hopefully the FBI done arrested him & Gives him his crazy meds. People who go on and on are Skitzophrenic or even Paranoid. Other words. Psycho Path ! I’ll tell you trolls right now you’ll be hated in prison if you turn out to be any kind of predator.

unknown says:

Lori drew was wrong ! Plain & simple ! Any adult who acts in such the manner as she did is immature or very unstable. Something is not right with there mind. This woman should have been checked as well as her daughter. Yes there are a few trolls on here & everywhere. People just say oh they are idiots and fight back. Don’t do a thing. Report Them. You won’t be able to stop these trolls by words back and fourth. Or go to there house. For all we know they could be so unstable & They snap & Do something. We need to stand up & fight back and make sure they get the justice deserved jail. juvie, prison….. Probation & Even be locked up in a mental hospitial . They need help And taught a lesson. And learn this stuff is not normal. These people are cowards. That’s why some has all there information blocked so some people can’t track them online. Issue is some can & The police & fbi can track you even if it’s a bit of a slow process.

annymous says:

I did not know much about trolls as a teen or online predators just real-life one’s. but to make a long story short. When I was a teen I thought these people were just a bit crazy or stupid & rambling non-topic issues. I use to go into chat rooms sometimes and talk about my fav. bands well there was one guy for over a few month period he was attacking everyone in the chat rooms and folllowing them with different accounts and trying to talk to us but in a bad way not friend-like at all . At the time he said he was 17 or 18 years of age. I asked why are you in the chat rooms anyway that’s made for teen girls? At one point he said oh i’m 15. I said no you are not. You are about 17 or 18 were all 12 to 15 yrs. of age in here. Alot of people did agree and told him off. Few girls were crazy enough to talk to him. So he was reported for a long time and even by parents he was reported. I hope today this guy is in prison. Because he was just not some troll he was a child predator. All his accounts had rextone in them biggest mistake . People know because he always put the same name in his accounts with other letters or numbers. By law where I live he would be a predator and jailed. Alot of states he would be . Few he wouldn’t. See my point? Some trolls are mentally ill and could even be child predator’s. It’s disgusting. Few out there are. Some are just stalkers. And even just plain nutjobs for reasons they gotta fight and attack everyone because they belong to a group. In reality they don’t. They live in a fantasy world. We need to be on the look out esp. as parents. friends, etc. God forbid if one ever tryed to attack and even meet my kid. He or she would be jailed within a few minutes. I live in a small town they’ed have to call in a s.w.a.t. team also if there was one because town’s people don’t take kind to sick o’s like that out here.

unknown says:

Let’s Sum It Up.

Trolls are mentally ill people. They are incapable of functioning inside
normal societal parameters, so consequently, they have no friends or
familial contacts. The absence of friends and family forces the troll to
rely on other mechanisms for recognition and human contact. The most common
tactics for trolls are making accusations which can’t be disproved,
spoofing, or deliberately misinterpreting or misrepresenting a legit group
participant’s point of view. (although it should be noted that trolls have a
vast knowledge of harassment techniques and have been known to devote huge
quantities of time to their obsessions). If you find yourself targeted by a
troll, you can be quite sure that you’re not the first one. Other newsgroup
visitors will recognize these baseless accusations and treat them
accordingly. Trolls often resort to name calling and making disparaging
remarks about you in their signatures. While this behavior can be irritating
to the victim of a troll, it’s actually a clear indication of the level of
intimidation that you inflict on the troll. You should also know that the
other newsgroup visitors are not stupid. They know that trolls are here to
acquire some sense of belonging, and their efforts are solely dedicated to
that end. You should feel under no obligation to defend yourself. Even
newsgroup visitors of modest mental capacities will recognize the troll for
what he/she/it is in time. Longtime visitors who are serious participants
will have killfiled the troll long ago, and new visitors will quickly tire
of the troll’s antics. To be clear, trolls are completely and utterly
harmless. They hold no real sway over the newsgroup’s opinion of you. Treat
them the same way you would an irritating sound.

unknown says:

Some people on here have issues ! Some seem to be idiot trolls rambling sick stuff. Remember trolls don’t do much of the stuff they say or post online because most are just lies they post. And most think that by posting certain stuff online will make them go unpunished. That’s why they don’t do it in real-life. Reality is even saying certain and doing certain things online can make them get punished as if you do something in real-life that you are not supposed to do (breaking the law-crimes) Sometimes they may get punished by law twice as hard for doing it online then in real-life.

Jodie Deutsch says:

Cyberbully's Being Jailed

I find it interesting that the person who wrote this article has somehow managed to get through school and get a job but cannot distinguish between a girl breaking up with a boy and a person repeatedly being bullied.

Ignorance like this is why nobody trusts newspapers or media in any way anymore. For obvious reasons, I will have to put this in terms that a 5 year old can understand:

If you act like a bad person and put yourself in someone else’s life, teasing them, making fun of them, harrassing them, hitting them, punching them, enticing others to do the same, etc. and the person you are doing this to doesn’t beat the crap out of you but lowers their head and cries or hides, you are a BULLY. If you keep this behavior up on any kind of a regular basis (for the author of this article – regular means on a consistent level, one after the other, over and over again) and this causes such emotional conflict as to make this person want to harm themselves rather than have to deal with you – THEN your stupid butt will go to jail. You will become a member of the “I no longer own my own rectum” committee and you will deserve every ounce of the punishment that you get.

This isn’t an emotional issue. It’s someone finally taking a stand against people who think they can do whatever they want and there will be no consequences. If schools would create anti-bullying policies that took away class credits if you are found guilty, then students would think twice about having to repeat a year of school for this kind of behavior and it would stop. Unless someone makes an example out of these hideous excuses for humans, then it’s just going to continue over and over and over again.

unknown says:

Ways to settle a troll is by making sure you make his or her life hell for a short time. (ruin expose them) no threats though. He or she will get a hint then & may leave you alone. Or report them. Take self denfense . Tell your friends & family. Or even get pepper spray or a permit if that troll becomes a threat. Just some ideas. They make everyone a target just not you !

unknown says:

stupid politicians
by Anonymous Coward
” I had a friend in high school kill himself after his girlfriend dumped him. Should she have been charged with a crime?”


No ! I don’t find that funny. It’s disgusting actually ! You are posting about your friend on here & Just made yourself look really bad & like a troll. By the way you are not a very good friend then if you laugh at something like that. Are you that twisted & evil as lori drew is? god ! Some people need to seek mental health. Esp. trolls. And this is totally different. This is an adult who was talking to a underage person pretending to be a teen themself. So you and a few others have no idea what you are really asking or talking about. Death is no laughing matter. Would you like for someone to laugh at you or a family member etc. When one is gone? I doubt it. We all gotta go sometime. Death is no joke. Esp. somebody who killed themself is no laughing matter. I had buddies/family who killed themself over things. Because these people also need some sort of help themself. You need help. Ten times more of it.

unknown says:

No sorry i’m not a troll and a few others are not as well. You must be since you are going on different accounts & claim i’m one . I’m sure you think people who do talk about the issues with trolls & about them & the real stuff & also us people who have hate you go and say were trolls alot. Were not. So sweetie you just actually told on yourself sten. It’s not rambling or ranting. It’s actual facts people bring up. So you are the actual troll. This site should delete and block you. And they may.

unknown says:

I don’t even let trolls get to me or hurt me. You just can’t. If you do over and over again well they’ll stomp on ya. You also gotta understand when they keep on bothering people via online non-stop. That would be called stalking and /or harassment which can be a federal crime if used on computers !!!!!!!!! Just as if someone bothered you in real life and you said stop and they don’t. Well it’s stalking. Do they even know they could be stalking a child? They don’t care and can not get anything through in the mind nothing gets through or clicks right. Yes they do stop for a short time. Then start on again and rambling like sten. does on here of how everyone is a troll and they are innocent not one buys that crap for a second. and pointing out people some days . Truth is that’s a troll people. Those who accuse people & got the nerve to start fights online. That’s what I call a troll. Simple fact. You go and start stuff, number of accounts, even accuseing people of trolling on here when they are not. You are really one . Seem to think everyone is trolling. Not you. So go cry me a river babe. You need to go somewhere else & troll. Not here. Wrong site. They don’t need the drama and fights. Even if you are a kid I don’t care. Would you like to go to jail ? Because if you keep on that’s where you’ll be headed. People will get sick of the stuff. The site should have report buttons or even just start reporting you guys . If a troll made this then looks like they’ll be heading to jail also. I really doubt a troll made this site. So don’t accuse people who’s trying to stop trolls of trolling. It’s wrong. That’s what you are doing. Unknown Troll
by Stenoslouch

Get a life besides trolling the net !

Anyway please check out this video ! Internet Bridge Troll collegehumor on youtube. It is kinda funny. Sorta also tells some of the truth behind trolls also.

Troll Ruiner says:

Trolls. Not the mythical creature or those dolls with fuzzy hair. Trolls. Those nasty hecklers who do nothing but annoy and launch asinine diatribes against bloggers, discussion board members, chatrooms, etc… If you’ve been around the Net for quite some time, you know who I’m talking about. They can be really irritating or at times, threatening. This is particularly true ever since the Kathy Sierra account on trolls threatening her came out huge in the blogosphere.

Computerworld has this great article on dealing with trolls and cyberstalkers. It cites some great advice (5 ways) to defeat those nasty trolls but here’s my take.

Remember your Miranda rights

Particularly the portion “whatever you say or do may be used against you.” While no one’s actually under arrest, it pertains to you. The Web’s an open space where anything you put online gets associated to you. Trolls can be really nitpicky. They can use anything and everything you post against you. So be responsible for whatever you post online.

Know the troll

Spamming troll: Posts to many newsgroups with the same verbatim post.
Kooks: A regular member of a forum who habitually drops comments that have no basis on the topic or even in reality.
Flamer: Does not contribute to the group except by making inflammatory comments.
Hit-and-runner: Stops in, make one or two posts and move on.
Psycho trolls: Has a psychological need to feel good by making others feel bad.
I’ll add one:

Grammar/Info Nazis: Those people who just can’t live without pointing out your inadequacies like grammar lapses. While corrections are much appreciated, these trolls make sure to make you look stupid.
“Don’t feed the troll” (DFTT)

Simple and surefire rule. Trolling is a cycle. Fight fire with fire and you’ll surely have a maelstrom of nasty comments swirling here and there. Trolls feed on your reactions. Giving them less reactions to feed on may cull the matter quickly.

Put comments under moderation

If you run a blog, try to hold comments under moderation. This way you can approve or disapprove of inappropriate comments before they show up for the general public to read. A word of caution though, take valid criticism as they are. Don’t be overly sensitive to mark those with sound arguments as troll comments just because they go against what you stood for. Debate is healthy.

Ban them

If you have persistent trolls, you might just want to block their names, e-mail addresses, or IP addresses. This way they will not be able to wreck havoc as they please. Engines like WordPress allows you to only allow comments from sources whose comments you’ve previously approved.

Monitor troll activity

Being vigilant is always a great thing to do. Don’ just delete their comments in an instant, you may want to save copies of them as evidence just in case things can get really mucky. Keep track of the post, the username, the IP address, timestamp and relevant posting details of the matter. One time, in a mailing list, we found out that a troll was actually a member’s vengeful ex by cross-checking IP records with previous e-mails to that member

Since you got a troll posting everyone is a troll. Which by the way I gotta say to them right now . People who is posting stuff on trolls and real information on them is those who stop trolls there is a huge difference between trolls and troll stoppers hun. Here’s what they want they want to try and start a fight/flame this site with stupid and immature first grade stuff. Trolls will say troll stoppers are the trolls. Really they are not by far the one who’s a troll is the one like by stenoslouch. I don’t that was a threat either. I think when people say would you like to go to jail? It means they are telling you to stop. If you don’t. Then you will be reported for trolling as well as harassment. Which could send you to jail. Alot of people do report and tell trolls even ask them if they’ed like to be locked up. We should. It puts the fear of god in some. They need to learn you don’t go around flaming and starting fights with total strangers especially troll stoppers.

Troll Ruiner says:

Not slander dear by law you can not come online harassing people and going around saying troll stoppers are the trolls. When infact looks like you are one since you came on here starting stuff with people. So actually you can turn the tables. No one believes you . People have the right to let you know and even ask you if you like to go to jail or quit? If you don’t stop you might be headed to jail.

Dan says:

Believe it or not. There is a small handful of bloggers who actaully sued a troll or trolls on there blogs. They would not stop. And were sued for harassment. By law you can take to court . It is not illegal. Because what they are doing could get them jailed & very illegal . Some know it. So when you show up in court they do get shocked a bit. If they are stalking and threating also harassment on your blog towards everyone .You must get the authorities involved then. This is a federal crime. Good Day-Night.

anonymous says:

As a parent or god parents etc. This is shocking . Myspace has and had when it first came out . They had more trolls-child predators then any other social net working site This has gotta end . If it doesn’t then as parents etc. do we need to take the law into our own hands? Myspace allows some of these people back on. I have myspace to keep in contact with family and friends sometimes. I had it for about four or five years now. I never had seen many people like that on there till a few months ago. I had reported over ten child predators on the site. Two were females and one was just 18 simply thinking it was alright in her mind to do such sick things. I had reported one two trolls trolling every site on myspace they could. Most of these trolls could turn out too be predators ! This is just disgusting and evil. I caught one guy going around telling teen girls he was 14 . He was 20 something. He had 2 different myspace pages. It is worse then ever. These people are coming on this site to get our kids. Some kids I have seen give there cell numbers out to these people. When is it gonna take a damn parent to watch there child and put a stop to this stuff? You got good and bad parents. Those bad parents out there who don’t care you should be punished then and jailed. Lori Drew what she done to that little girl was bad and she was a bad and unstable parent who did not care. She was heartless ! Because let me tell you something ! You think your kid is 100 % innocent? Not now days. No kid is innocent. You can find out by checking up on your kids pages. I seen way many kids who done stuff they were not supposed too do. As parents if you do not watch an underage child while there on the net or check up things it’s not gonna be good. Bad things happen now days. Kids trust everyone out in the world and on the net ! They think it’s safe and everyone likes them and will be a good friend. Most of these people are trolls-predators. Very few people they are chatting with are the same age as them. These people tend to hold things sometimes we don’t know what and they start to make ugly statements against others because they feel like it or just are crazy-bullies who have false hopes built up. So they go on a harassing spree and harass anyone and everyone they can including our kids later on online. I seen a lot of adults do this kind of stuff towards kids on social networking sites. Some people can not quit. It’s best we report them over and over till the net working sites get tired of it and the authorities step in and take action. Some of you don’t know who you are chatting with. It could be a kid. If you troll-bully our kids were gonna make sure your crazy ass*es are locked up. There is no need to pull immature second grade stuff. No need to be immature. Those who can’t grow up and still do it sometimes online then. Then it just goes to show us they have an immature state of mind. I am sick of the crap adults do and pull online . Those who can’t now stop really are unstable people. There are many ways of stopping them.

unknown says:

by Anonymous Coward
The problem is where do you draw the line. You can be considered a troll and should be locked up for two years. It deeply angers me that you are willing to toss out reason and logical thinking to imprison people you DON’T LIKE.

We can’t imprison people just because they are assholes and we don’t like them.

Not all trolls are just a -holes. All though I agree just a tiny bit in some things you posted up. But most trolls are mentally ill people . Half the world does not like these trolls. Even law enforcement don’t. Because some trolls can become major threats to society believe it or not.So they are just not any old a-hole you’ll run across on things. They are very unstable people. And if they draw the line to become a threat then they need locked up. If they don’t start blocking them . If that don’t help they’ll just have everyone know they are a troll and hate them. Few trolls get tired and will leave. Those that don’t. Then there’s ways to make them leave. (no threats)Toss them off the post or chat. After so much of tossing them and blocking. They’ll get tired of it hopefully. Those who don’t then we need to take a stand and let them know and stop being scared of someone on the internet that could be a thousand miles away . That goes for everyone.

unknown says:

Now alot o us know what will happen when trolls are reported or gets arrested. They run and hide. They’ed hide under mommy’s skirt thinking she could save him or her. Nothing will save you from being arrested or reported or even hated on the web for trolling. You trolls just never get it. Just keep on making yourself look foolish and immature and even worse they get caught up in alot of lies and other things. I found out a few online trolls were known felons and some have been arrested. These types of people just have nowhere else to go and does not care to go back to prison where they belong. Or even in a mental hospitial. Where ever they may have been. Our system needs to stop letting them out for godsake ! Other countries don’t put up with that nonsense they take stuff into there own hands sometimes. They have punishements much more harsh. I wish sometimes America was like that. Maybe people will think twice then and won’t do stupid stuff again including trolling. They are punks anyway thinking a computer can save them or there mommy. Only things that will save trolls is by being locked up or being put on alot of meds to keep there mind set straight and control it to a point where that part says stop . (thinking)

unknown says:

Thing is these people wanna blame everyone else for their actions. Some do know they are wrong but do not care. They can’t blame themself. Also these people are so unhappy with there life and themself. I read profiles online before half these trolls were unhappy each time they trolled blogs and other things. So by trying to make themself happy they’ll troll people. Total strangers.


sordidguy is a topix, aol, youtube troll. If I could I would get my hands on him I would. He ruins threads with his stupid bs. Thinks he’s smart & not. The police & fbi can trace your ip’s . What he don’t know is once you reported they watch you on every website. The more proof they got they can lock you up. Even if it takes 5 months there watching you. They got more proof to get locked up for a long time. He’s nuts & yet claims he’s not and not a troll. The dummy ruined my page on youtube. I been watching his threads and laugh at just how stupid he is. I knew a guy who was watched 2 yrs. and got locked up in federal . He’s facing 10 years max ! Now days They watch you for few months or days eve, Because cyber bullying/stalking laws has went into effect in just bout every state.

sordidguy: These 2 sluts should die.

Those sluts you talking about right there are my 2 teen daughters and they aren’t sluts idiot.

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