Trolls

How to Interact with People ~ 1

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Welcome to part one of How to Talk to People– an ICBGM general initiative. The purpose of this series is to teach and inform on the general concepts of real-life interaction between digitally-minded people.

Due to funding, this picture has nothing to do with the post.

For those of you who don’t commonly frequent Internet forums, let me quickly explain the concept. Forums are digital “huddles” on the Internet in which people gather, post questions, project opinions, and respond to others’ posts. Forums attract all sorts of people: nice people, angry people, helpful people, loud people, and the list goes on. Bronies, don’t even get me started on Bronies. Why did you even bring them up? 

I’m going to focus on that last–and probably most annoying–group of people in the list: the loud ones. Inclusive of shouters and ranters, the members of this troll-like group of creatures love to cause ruckus. These people love their own opinions. In fact, they love them so much, they feel they must share their golden pieces of integral knowledge with everyone they meet. Like talking to regular people about singers in bands. For hours. It’s just not cool.

So the real question, and the whole point of this post, is this: are you a forum ranter in real life? Let’s go through the list below to see if you fit the description.

  1. Loud – I suppose this is something one wouldn’t admit, but this is also a very common characteristic of a ranter. The common ranter is often very vocal, loud, and persistent—often about pointless things. Like televised golf. Televised golf is pointless.
  2. Prolific Conversationalist – Similar to the Internet’s bane, the over-frequent poster, this person strikes up conversations with everyone. This wouldn’t be too terrible, except for the fact that the conversations are all about the same things, and they usually are self-glorifying. Dude, I have the entire list of Kellogg’s cereals memorized! Wanna hear them?
  3. Conversationjacking – Like hijacking a car, but with a conversation. Have you ever been talking with a friend when a random person comes up and butts in? The new person takes over the conversation, steers it in whatever direction he wishes, and eventually drives it into the terrible Swamp of Boredom—completely oblivious to the other conversationalists that he drowned in the process.
  4. Inability to Understand Others – ie: Regard for other people. This is helpful in the general role of human interaction.

So, are you one of these people? If so, I have a piece of advice for you. Stop it! Don’t even question why; the fact that these actions are all conducive to loneliness, solitude, and  excess Internet usage should be enough to convince you to drop them from your everyday activities.

Paid for by the Internet Committee for the Betterment of General Mankind. Tune in next time for advice on how to talk with enthusiasts about their areas of expertise. 

Cheers!
~ XK

How to Use Proper Grammar

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Sike! I bet you thought this was going to be a post full of fairly useful tips on how to properly make use of grammar, complimented by sarcastic remarks. Nope! Just Chuck Testa. I considered writing a post of a similar nature, ranting about the lack of proper grammar by those who Facebook, Tweet, write blogs, and do whatever else people do on the internet. Then I realized the monumental task that I would be putting myself to, and I decided to reduce the condescension levels that means I’ll be nicer and, instead, write about the importance of grammar. 

Of course, I make my share of mistakes in this blog. You can probably even find errors in this post. Every now and then I leave out word, misspell a synonim, or forget to insert a words punctuation. See what I did there? No man is infallible, aside from Jesus and Chuck Norris, but I don’t think either of them blog. Jesus did write a pretty good book, though. You should totally read it. Aside from the students in the English Review classes at my college, I try not to be overly critical of others’ writing. I’m an English tutor, in case you’re wondering. I’ll let slide a few pronouns who are missing their antecedents. I don’t mind the occasional comma splice or wrongly inserted semicolon, and I try to overlook the stray confused homophone. 

The Canadians have spies everywhere…

That brings us to the somewhat main point of this post. Yes, it has a point. Strict enforcement of grammar is not as important as a clear conveyance of the message intended. Sometimes, it is raining outside. I must admit, while possessing some sense of grammar has the effect of enhancing one’s communication skills, this skill has its defects. Grammar can be restrictive of style. Conjunctions are not free to reside at the head of sentences, and who made up the rules for the proper usage of dashes? I don’t want to be a perfect grammarian; I just want my readers to understand the message. In this case, I want them  to understand that I value grammar, and I believe they should as well. Translation: learn how to write. 

Writing may not be your forté, but you should do the best that you can. If you don’t, who knows what will happen; maybe I’ll troll you, or maybe you’ll write something that will offend the Grammarian Association of Newfoundland. The members will become so incensed with your lack of grammatical correctness that they will hire someone to do something bad to you. They’d hire mercenaries because grammarians aren’t very powerful people. The members–since they’re Canadian–will most likely hire Eskimos to engage you in an existential conversation on the ethicality of Canadian bacon in a society with public health care. This will be followed by a taunting of the value of the American dollar. The public shame and humiliation that will result could be devastating to your appetite.

So, the next time you are tempted to misuse “their/there/they’re” or needlessly insert a comma, remember the Canadians. They’re watching you… eh.  

How To Be an Internet Troll

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Considering the former success of my “How to be a Spam Bot” post, I figured I would continue the legacy of those wonderful pieces of advice and present you with this. The following is a detailed guide that details the details of trolling. Have fun.

First of all: Never fully agree with anybody! That is the fundamental rule that all internet trolls must follow. You may, every now and then, give concessions to the opposition to allow them a glimpse of hope, but never let them win an argument. Even with this post, don’t follow everything I say…

Secondly: Use as many long words as you can, even if their use is slightly incorrect. If you can make your victim use a thesaurus, you are doing well.

Third: Use as many strong, logical arguments as you can come up with. Often times, since you are a troll, your premises will be false. That doesn’t mean your argument can’t be perfect though. I’m telling you! Aliens do exist!! How else do you explain the existence of Lady Gaga?

Fourthedly: Allow certain keywords in your opponent’s language to trigger random rants. Find weaknesses that are completely unrelated to the main point, and exploit them. Make the best use of Straw Men, Red Herrings, and Parades of Horrors as you can. Yes, I said fourthedly. Get over it.

Fifth: Allow the opposition to cite sources, then attack the reputation of said sources. Bring up inane and completely random facts if needed, but discredit the sources at all costs. No! The CIA doesn’t know anything! Their website is the epitome of government cover-ups! 

Sixth: Use webcomics, Urban Dictionary, Wikipedia, and other non sequitur sources in your own arguments. Calvin and Hobbes, XKCD, and Pearls Before Swine are excellent examples of webcomics to use. “I’m sorry you were offended.”

Seventh: When all else fails, resort to name-calling. This is the most stereotypical action of an internet troll, so keep in mind that you are reaching a low point. But don’t let that bring you down… Just move on to the next poor soul.

Eighth: Come up with an awesome troll name. Like, p0pt4rtz43v3r or iloveun1c0rnz… something like that. You’ll figure it out.

There you have it, a guide on trolling the internetz. Now go on, get out there and let the world know how obnoxious you are. Comment on people’s hairstyle before their philosophy. That’s what really matters anyway, right? I mean, why not be as mean as possible on the internet… it’s what it’s there for!

Have a Nice Life,
~ XK

Note – You may not use this guide to the detriment of others. If you go out and hurt someone’s feelings, I will personally come to your website with my army of trolls and destroy your comment area. You have been warned.