20 July 2007
gone bloggin'

Not much going on here today, so go check out my post about trolls in the blogging world over at She Who Blogs.

If you don't know what the H-E-double-hockey-sticks I'm talking about, all the more reason to head on over to:


Comment here, comment there, comment everywhere!

I'm really interested in what you have to say about this issue as it's becoming increasingly important in our little Blogosphere; I do hope you'll share your thoughts.

Also, the Bookworms Carnival Edition 1: Novels that I mentioned last week is up and running at Dewey's the hidden side of a leaf:

Great reviews there, of course, but be sure to check out Dewey's entire site for an astounding number of quality book reviews. I'm thinking she likes to read or something.

And if you haven't yet, please do take a moment and fill out the fun meme I posted yesterday--thanks so much to all who've commented so far, as each and every one of you has made me smile

Buon weekend a tutti!

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Blogger Roam To Rome... said...

Beautiful article Sognatrice! You made me stop and think as usual!

I did meet a troll out there in the blogosphere today. Not a real meanie but it did throw me off at first and quickly shrugged it off... and then read you! :)

Nice timing :)

Nice writing :)

Anonymous Judith in Umbria said...

I've had only two that were marginally trolly in two years. Nowadays I can actually find out who the troll is, having installed an add-on that can take you right back to the unique marker for anyone except someone on a hired or borrowed machine. I never bother them, I just want to know who and from where.

Having once had a stalker who used technology and media, I am not blasé about it. Here in Italy I haven't been attacked or threatened, but I was then and the police were involved.

That is more than trolling, though. But who can guess when a troll becomes more?

Blogger sognatrice said...

Roamer, there always seems to be someone waiting to crash the party, rain on the parade, whatever other cliché you'd like to throw in. I just don't get the motivation behind it--I mean if you don't like something, move on! Anyway, glad you liked it.

Judith, that's horrible, and your last question is exactly what I've been thinking about lately. It's scary stuff what some people will do--and I suppose I'm hoping that by trying to figure it out a bit, we can limit trolly behavior to nasty comments and not death threats.

I have to admit that I feel a lot freer in my blogging because I'm over here in a middle of nowhere village where people are *very* protective and mindful--and I'm writing in a foreign language for here; I don't think I'd be nearly as open if I were living in Philadelphia for instance--too easy for people to find you and do whatever it is they might do. Scary stuff.

Anonymous Sara said...

An old line of wisdom from the interdotnets: "Don't feed the trolls. When you feed them, they stay."

Like Judith, I have been stalked IRT, but it was long before I ever had a blog. The thing is, some few people are truly crazy and cannot be deflected, and once they discover and fixate upon you they will come to you however they find an entrance, but they are rare. Most trolls are pubescent boys (in fact or in effect) looking for attention. Or they are bullies who feel powerless in real life. Or they are those people who like to stir stuff up just because they think that's more interesting. Blocking them and ignoring them is all you can do, and as with every other stranger you meet, hope they don't turn out to be the one in a million who's actually desperate or a sociopath.

Under no circumstances should you feel like you have any obligation -- or power -- to change a troll into a not-troll. They'll either grow out of it on their own or not, but rewarding them with attention, even would-be corrective attention, only encourages them to continue.

Blogger sognatrice said...

Sara, I think I got it--feed a fever, starve a troll? Something like that?

So true that a small percentage are going to end up being true sociopaths. I guess that's comforting.

Excellent advice on not feeling the need to convert the troll--just like relationship, huh? Can't change anyone, all you can control are your own actions.

Good stuff, and I'm sorry about your stalker.

Blogger goodthomas said...

It was a great article, sognatrice. I have heard so many stories the past two years, I shudder at the thought. Seems so . . . unnecessary. Why? Why?

I have been very lucky, and have not been bothered to any great extent. I may be wrong, but it seems that in this blogland, as in real life, that females are targets for such cowardice a great deal more.

Thank you for your words.

Blogger JennieBoo said...

You are so articulate, Sognatirice.

And, you are totally right, "Trolls" are ruining the blogosphere for all of us. UGGHHHH! I wish we could "lynch" 'em!

Happy weekend, anyway! Give Luna a pat for me!

Blogger Ambra Celeste said...

Very interesting Sognatrice. Whenever I visit someone's blog, I feel it is a little like viewing their home. How do they decorate it, how do they let their personality show through various posts... I can't imagine going to someone's blog and defacing it. It all comes down to respect. Or the golden rule "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you". I agree with the advice to ignore the troll. But like our homes, there would be an almost irresistible urge to defend your blog, in essence the things you choose to share with others. I am really not sure how I would react to a troll. Thanks for this great article. Once again you got me thinking!

Blogger sognatrice said...

gt, I agree--why? And also, yes, it seems that women continue to be targeted more than men. It's quite disgusting.

Jennie, troll lynching...now there's a thought. Luna appreciates the pat :)

Ambra, I love that description of blog visiting--it's so true, and perhaps even more a description than even one's home because we purposely put this out there and ask people to come in and have a look. At the very least, coming in and trashing it is disrespectful; sure we're free to roam the Internet as we wish, but you're right, the Golden Rule still applies.

Any thoughts on whether trolls are arseholes in daily life or whether they're often your mild-mannered, repressed office worker who feels s/he has no other outlet? You know, like how serial killers always end up being the neighbor no one suspected?

I'm sure it takes all types, right, but what do you think?

Anonymous bella said...

I get a lot of visitors via google images. What I'm guessing is that each and every picture I put up on the blog is out there for everyone in internet land to see. If you add a perverted catch phrase to a post, you will also get tons of hits. For instance - if by chance you're talking about big boobs - expect a zillion hits from college boys with too much time on their hands.
What I'm going to have to do is starts spelling things wrong and be extra careful of the pictures I post. (A picture of my kid in her bathing suit at the beach had to be taken down due to all the traffic on that one post). Nice, huh??

That was an excellent piece, Sognatrice. I've been fortunate never to experience it, but I've come across trolls on other blogs. My inclination is to ignore them.

A fellow blogger recently argued that blogosphere is full of sycophants - everyone being nice to one another in the hope that others would return the favour. I said I thought it might be a little different from that. One, do we genuinely want to offend and hurt others, I doubt it and b) if we do, how do we know how they'll respond. Not many of us know each other, for all I know, the blogging acquaintance, had I said something he didn't like, could have turned into a troll. One never knows.

But I suppose blogosphere is a reflection of life, so we'll find the good and the bad here.

Blogger SabineM said...

Sognatrice, I have been reading your blog for a few months now, Came through via SEARCHING FOR Dessert. You are an amazing Blogger. This blogger world is amazing. I could so spend all day discovering amazing people all over the world. I have to tear myself away.
I was on ABSOLUTELY VANILLA"s blog today (via Caroline Smailes) and on the margin, Absolutely Vannilla had a great comment "Whether you write an email, a manuscript, a query letter or a book proposal, never forget the positive or negative impact of your words." WELL PUT
and SO true!
Trolls are everywhere in life. Like Absolutely Vanilla, I choose to ignore them.
Keep up the good work. I am addicted to your blog and your writing!

Blogger Shameless said...

Hi there, :)
Congratulations again on your win in the lion circle contest! Now it's time to get a book voucher to you. Could you please send me an email to let me know which Amazon site you would like to redeem the voucher at ie: amazon.com, amazon.co.uk, amazon.fr, etc. I need your up-to-date email address plus the Amazon site of your choice. The voucher can only be redeemed at the site you choose and this can't be changed afterwards. Send your email to: seamuskearney@gmail.com
You may have already sent these details but please send them again because my normal email account (at caramail) is out of action/unable to be accessed because of an upgrade. Thanks, and congratulations once again, Seamus.

Blogger sognatrice said...

Bella, well I wasn't planning on talking about big boobs, but now you've thrown it out there ;) Seriously, that is just disgusting about what happened regarding your daughter's photo. People are truly sick.

AV & A, yes, the blogosphere is just a smaller version of the world, so it's not surprising that we'd find mean people here as well--you'd just hope there would be some sense of community among us, since we're pretty much all equally vulnerable. Mah.

Shameless, thanks for stopping by; I'll send off that info to you shortly.

Blogger Dewey said...

Ha ha, I really do love to read, you're right about that. I'll head over now to your post at she who blogs.

I haven't had any trolls yet. I do have one regular reader who has disagreed strongly in discussion before, and I notice he stepped back once others chimed in (very politely!) saying they thought he was wrong. So I vowed to do the same when I see it happening on other blogs. And I had one negative comment from someone who was either a one-time reader or never spoke up other than this one time, and he was upset that I only gave a so-so review to a book he loved. But that's it so far!

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