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    • CommentAuthorWakefield
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.1)
    Article on internet trolls that'll appear in the Sunday Times. Well worth the read, especially if you're interested in social erosion and the sort of people interested in causing it.

    What I find particularly impressive though is the amount of access the reporter had.
  1.  (3174.2)
    What I found most impressive is that the trolls trolled the NYT in their own article.

    I'm really surprised that the reporter, the editors of the NYT Magazine - no one, apparently - seemed to wonder too much about whether or not these guys, whose whole thing is fucking with people, were taking them for a ride.

    The Rolls with a driver showing up to drive Weev around Fullerton, Ca., should have sent up red flags IMMEDIATELY.
    •  
      CommentAuthorJon Wake
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.3)
    What a sad collection of little boys.
  2.  (3174.4)
    I just laughed my ass off for the entire Weev section. Also, I'm trying to decide whether or not that whole sexual abuse thing was real or not.
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      CommentAuthorEgon
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.5)
    Interesting. Perhaps he could have planted a false phone number to his family, anticipating the reporter's research.
    • CommentAuthorWiseEyes
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008 edited
     (3174.6)
    What is it about the internet that makes people insane?
    Doesn't Penny-Arcade have a t-shirt about that or something?

    It's been a very long time since being on 4chan. Whenever I think about checking it again, I just feel dirty.

    EDIT: To paraphrase Warren (please no fanboy ban!) "The internet works much better when you realize there's people on the other end."
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      CommentAuthorwilliac
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.7)
    "Malwebolence"?!

    /b/ is brilliant. Trolls anywhere else are a little sad.
  3.  (3174.8)
    I just started my own thread about this before seeing this here. Oops.

    Anyway: weev comes off like a psychopath. I didn't believe half the stuff the reporter said about him, but still. He's nuts.
    • CommentAuthorWakefield
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.9)
    What's awesome about this article, as someone pointed out, is it's hard to tell what's true and what isn't. "While reporting this article, I did everything I could to verify the trolls’ stories and identities, but I could never be certain." It creates an interesting tension. It's certainly reasonable to believe the troll was abused as a kid, but it's a narrative that I'd expect, a neat and pat way of explaining This Is Why I Am Who I Am.

    I myself am skeptical about the factual details, but it's fascinating the way their personalities come out, and how they want to be viewed by the world.
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      CommentAuthoryirimyah
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.10)
    I know/operate closely with these people, and the article doesn't really do justice to the mentality.

    Most trolls of the type discussed in this article (the old Bantown clique + hangers on) are mentally unstable drug users with a history of destructive interpersonal relationships who grew up in abusive homes. We act in antisocial ways because we hold the media image of the psychopath as the ideal person; caring about other people has caused us emotional pain & we wish that we didn't have to care.

    And yes, most of this holds true for me, too.

    Oh, and just ignore anything RFJason says, he's a useless loser who courts media attn simply because the cool kids don't want to play with him.
  4.  (3174.11)
    Ah fuck. Someone named The Place That Shall Not Be Named. Nice way to fail rules 1 and 2.

    Hello CNN.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAdamK
    • CommentTimeAug 1st 2008
     (3174.12)
    @Wiseeyes- I think you're referring to The John Gabriel Greater Internet Dickwad Theory-
    Normal Person + Anonymity + Audience = Total Dickwad
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2008
     (3174.13)
    YOU GUYS ARE GAY
    •  
      CommentAuthorAdam
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2008
     (3174.14)
    What, are YOU trying to get a rise out of us now?
  5.  (3174.15)
    @yirimyah:
    Most trolls of the type discussed in this article (the old Bantown clique + hangers on) are mentally unstable drug users with a history of destructive interpersonal relationships who grew up in abusive homes. We act in antisocial ways because we hold the media image of the psychopath as the ideal person; caring about other people has caused us emotional pain & we wish that we didn't have to care.


    That's interesting you'd say that, because I definitely thought "psychopath" multiple times while reading the article, but I have to question where the line is, you know? How much of it is IMITATION of psychopathy and how much of it IS psychopathy? How close to a psychopath do you have to be to imitate psychopathic behavior without becoming repulsed with yourself?

    Also, I'd say there's quite a ways between not caring about other people and actively deciding that you know how everyone should act and attempting to visit particularly heinous consequences upon anyone who doesn't follow that pattern, even to the point of seeking out people to disapprove of and punish. The latter, which is the most logical explanation of trolling that I can find, seems to border on megalomania to me.
    • CommentAuthorWiseEyes
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2008
     (3174.16)
    @agentarsenic - why should the rules bother me if I don't go there anymore?
  6.  (3174.17)
    @agentarsenic - why should the rules bother ANYONE when that whole place has gone to shit?
    •  
      CommentAuthorallana
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2008
     (3174.18)
    @shawnclark, agreed about the Rolls thing. what a great article.


    re: psychopathy: let's combine this thread with the "Man decapitated on Greyhound Bus" thread and see what happens. wait 'til dude's defence in court is "i was just being PROVOCATIVE."
  7.  (3174.19)
    @allana--That made me LOL.
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      CommentAuthorthom_wong
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2008
     (3174.20)
    Psychopaths or sociopaths? Recent studies have shown there are far more sociopaths than people might think, especially working in offices.