Troll Taxonomies

“The internet doesn’t turn people into assholes so much as it acts as a massive megaphone for existing ones, according to work by researchers at Aarhus University.

-Tom McCay, “Online Trolls Actually Just Assholes All the Time, Study Finds.” Gizmodo. August 27, 2021.

I think there is a troll gravity online, where the megaphones of a few draw people into their troll orbit. And like gravity, there is a difference between super massive jackholes of trolldom, where galaxies of individuals revolve around them. On the other end, there are the asteroids and comets of trolldom, not there all the time, but occasionally, they fly in and are a spectacle. If you are going to have this kind of discussion, you probably need to develop a taxonomy of trolldom.

Also, the reason people behave differently online is because there is not a threat of physical violence. A grief troll online can just ask questions that offline would likely end in a beating.

Fun with HTML: ‮ Writing Backwards ‭ / Writing Backwards

The HTML Entity for changing the directionality of text from right-to-left (rtl) is 8238. To change it back to left-to-right (ltr), use 8237.

Repeating the paragraph above with rtl and ending with the ltr:

‮”The HTML Entity for changing the directionality of text from right-to-left (rtl) is 8238. To change it back to left-to-right (ltr), use 8237.”‭

Possible legitimate use: if it is used in a profile that might be scraped, it will likely throw unexpected results, such as reversing text in auto-generated spam email.

But, there’s a few situations where this could be used to amusing effect or to be jackass. Don’t be a jackass.

h/t Tim Carry.