Chat trolls on the Internet are an infuriating aspect of the modern world. If, like most of us, you enjoy taking part in the social side of the world wide web, then dealing with trolls can be an unfortunate part of life.
What exactly is a chat troll?
No chat trolls are not particularly verbose monsters who live under bridges. In Internet terms, a troll is someone who intentionally upsets people by posting derogatory and inflammatory content to provoke readers into a negative emotional response. They revel in causing pain and will say the most hurtful things they can, just to make other people unhappy.
So, how do you deal with chat trolls?
Knowing how to deal with an online troll is difficult and you can easily find yourself getting dragged down by their negative comments. But with the right tactics you can combat their bile. Here are a few tips:
Know when someone is trolling you and when they are just disagreeing
There is a fine line between spirited discussion, general disagreement, and all out trolling for the sake of it. Before jumping to the conclusion that you are being trolled, think to yourself, have you said anything inflammatory yourself? Is the person being rude or are they just stating their point? Do they actually have a point or are they being cantankerous? If it seems like they are disagreeing with you or being overly rude for the sake of it, then you probably have a troll. If they continue to be rude after you have extracted yourself from the chat, then you definitely have a troll.
Never feed trolls
Trolls feed on your negative responses so don’t give them any. If you feed a troll, like any wild animal, they will just keep coming back for more. The best way to deal with a troll is to ignore them until they go away. They want your attention and discomfort and thrive on your responses. They will actually feel that what they are doing is funny and will try to bait you into what they consider to be a joke. Don’t engage with them and they will move onto another food source soon enough.
Trolling is never accepted on any moderated website, including chat rooms and social media portals, with many considering it a violation of their terms and conditions. If you experience trolling, report the person committing it. Most sites make it very easy to report comments and the people who commit them with well placed “report it” buttons.
Bring them out into the open.
Trolls need anonymity to function. Keeping their details secret allows them to make comment with little fear of repercussion. But they aren’t invisible and a little digging often provides a fair bit of information about who they are. Let them (and everybody else) know that you have their details. Remove that veil of anonymity and watch them turn tail and run.
Online trolls can be incredibly hurtful, but you don’t have to let them get to you. Follow our handy guide and you can beat the online bullies.