There has been an awful lot written & said in the last week or so on the subject of “trolling” and it’s prevalence on social networking.
Now, this is far from a new phenomena, and anybody who has ever used a football message board will be able to attest to the fact that as long as someone has an opinion there’ll be at least one dickhead who wants to declare war on them.
In fact I would argue that the twitter trolls have honed their vitriol on club sites and turned up on twitter as fully rounded arseholes, ready to start a fight with someone over shirt numbers.
Now my experiences on twitter and message boards have been mostly positive, but I haven’t escaped the trolls myself, in all their extremes.
I remember when I first posted an article for Skysports and foolishly put a link on a message board, that I was bombarded with abuse. From “ill informed wanker” to a poster who critically analysed the whole post with a range of emoticons & notes after every single sentence, telling me exactly what he thought & how my article made him feel. A mixture of intense hatred and weirdo obsessiveness.
Along with this I’ve had people offering to fight me, when I’ve posted a viewpoint they didn’t agree with. Been called every name under the sun, and told that I’ve let the club down with my views. The fury that people build up whilst sitting on Internet message boards would be worrying, if it wasn’t so funny.
I personally enjoy writing articles, and even having people completely disagree with you, as long as it’s reasoned. When I wrote that John Terry shouldn’t play for England ever again, I was told that I was completely wrong and also that I was what was wrong with the England team.
Illogical, furious and unfortunately, unlikely to go anywhere soon. As long as the Internet exists, so will the trolls.