Trolls and Shaming

Internet Trolling

The internet is home to some great websites that are genuinely helpful. We can reconnect with people we haven’t seen since middle school all the way to connecting to new ventures into the world of employment. We can even host our own free blogs! *nudges to WordPress*

Then, well, we have what many people refer to as “trolls” of the internet (or, in my words, pompous ass-hats).

You know, trolls; a person behind their computer screens judging peoples’ lives in which they know little to nothing about with malicious intent. More often than not, if they have an opportunity to make someone feel bad by posting something rude, they do it. It gives them a satisfaction of some sort; more often than not, it’s their lives that they’re trying to escape. Even if that person does not respond to them, they still have that satisfaction of saying things that can hurt the average person.

People are quick to say websites like 4chan are an example of scum and that it is the “true showcase” of ignorance. Sure, it seems like it can be worse than others, but to me, this isn’t just a one-website deal.

It can happen on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and even here on WordPress. In fact, it can happen on ANY website on any given time. Upworthy has a video that discusses findings on TEDtalks (men were/are more likely to comment on a woman’s appearance than a male’s appearance in any given conference video).

“Concern” Trolls

Another type of person that we see a lot is a concern troll (do not confuse concern trolls with people actually asking questions and/or those who are genuinely concerned. I know it may be difficult to discern who is “faking it” and who is not).

I see those on an awful lot of posts showing chubby/fat/obese women. I’m glad I’m not the only person that felt this way.

I agree with the notion that being obese is not healthy. Really, I do. However, let me tell you from experience: telling me ignorant and awful things simply DO NOT HELP. They DO NOT help me or encourage me to lose weight, at all. More times than not, there are people that just say “it is morally wrong to be fat”. Wow.

Telling a morbidly obese person to lose weight because “it is wrong to be that fat” doesn’t make that person want to lose weight (or ridiculous name calling). Telling a person who is morbidly obese to love themselves is a step in the right direction. It’s at that time when you truly appreciate yourself and WANT to do better for yourself that you make changes.

Why it is so, insanely difficult to that grasp that concept, I guess I’ll never know.

Online Vs. Offline Shaming

It wasn’t that long ago that when you said something controversial or just flat out ignorant in public (in front of ACTUAL people) you were met with backlash. More often than not, it was for your own good; acting and speaking trashy meant you were seen as a trashy person, plain and simple.

Don’t get me wrong, though: sometimes, the uncomfortable needs to be said. Sometimes, we need to push the boundaries for acceptance to be commonplace, such as LGBTQ rights.

But, when will the illusion shatter? When will trolls begin to see people as they are and not as whom they think they should be? Are they really just taking a look at themselves and projecting or are they, in fact, that arrogant?

It’s easy to get lost in the comments and have absolutely no hope for humanity, but at the end of the day, they are suffering as much as we are. Being perpetually ignorant is a problem in itself.

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