Is Trolling Just A Form Of Practical Jokes?

from the it's-all-fun-and-games-until-the-rickrolls-begin dept

As the news of 4chan hitting 1 billion posts has come out, it only seems appropriate that the Surprisingly Free podcast has a fascinating discussion with Stefan Krappitz, the author of the book Troll Culture: A Comprehensive Guide, in which Krappitz tries to suggest that the common view of trolling as being a negative thing is mostly inaccurate. Instead, he suggests, trolling is more a form of practical joking -- "disrupting people for personal amusement." He even suggests that Socrates may have been an original troll, baiting people with silly questions and then mocking them. The overall discussion is quite interesting, even if it seems to underestimate the collateral damage that trolling can cause at times. Still, it does raise some good points, that certainly counter the more common view of completely condemning trolling.

Filed Under: practical jokes, trolling


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  1. icon
    Wally (profile), 11 Aug 2012 @ 12:47pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Precisely :-) I have seen all spectrums of trolling and experienced them. I have a pretty good idea as to where the nastier ones go. I am sorry for lashing out on you like that, and I now see your point.

    The one thing I'm sure you've considered is that each person has his or own limits of the amount they can take. The only thing I can say is that if you troll without butthurting someone, annoying them and others to pieces, and generally give the person a chance to breathe about it, then you're a very awesomely wonderful troll.

    The way I see it, the amount of traumatization someone receives is based on their psychological limit of being picked on. Translation: it's in the eye of the beholder. That means the person being victimized should be able decide for themselves when enough is enough and will express it. Now if you cannot recognize that when someone says they are victimized (note it has to be a genuine feeling of being victimized), and don't stop if asked in general, then the trolling would be considered at a bullying/harrassment level.

    Just to be clear I quite agree with you. I felt I should add a bit to the collective thought at hand.

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