“Internet Trolls might be mentally ill.” Might be?

Is there any doubt that Internet Trolls are mentally ill?

El 24 de enero de 2014 (Updated: El 22 de junio de 2014). Hola. Before the Internet, if you had asked me about most people in the world I would have said that most people don’t act like assholes. That was my experience at the time. And before the Internet when hard-copy publications had something called a “Letters to the Editor” section I suspect the troll-type letters they received from assholes ended up in their trash can not to ever be published.

Then fast forward to today: These days in what is an increasingly sick society, online comments on message forums are becoming more and more toxic, hateful and difficult to read for me and others. I’ve come to expect the worst from on-line comments so if I decide to scan comments, I do so cautiously and with a sense of “expect the worst.” Many websites no longer allow comments, understandably so. As of this writing, 583,967 WordPress blogs have disabled comments. So that’s 583,967 people with a blog who no longer want trolls or anyone else commenting on their site. pink barrio turned off comments sometime ago because we were being saturated with spam comments and I got tired of dealing with it. It was taking too much time to delete it all.

Someone e-mailed me and asked about my recommendations for a local news website. I can’t think of any local San Francisco website/publications I would recommend to anyone, partly because of the toxic trolls on their sites.

One of the local sites that identifies as “progressive” (they are really partisan Democrats) is thoroughly infested and infected with the worst trolls I’ve ever seen anywhere. Their comment forum is practically unreadable. The trolls there are all anonymous using the word “Guest” as their handle and they are corporate shills and hacks. Their style is to taunt, bait and be as disrespectful to the writer of articles of that site as possible. They are in-your-face, juvenile, arrogant, taunting, baiting and they smugly rub their conservative-corporatist agenda in everyone’s face. They degrade others and put the writers of articles down as well as other commenters of their opposition. To them, they own the truth although from reading some of their filth they never let facts get in their way. Credible links to articles and factually-based comments in response to the trolls are readily dismissed by them with some snarky response. This particular breed of noxious class-ist and elitist troll serves as hacks and shills for the current conservative alcalde/mayor of San Francisco but they call him a “moderate” to hide his agenda. They also shill for conservative Politician Cocks and hide him and his agenda behind the word “moderate”. They are shills for The Tech Surveillance-State Industrial Complex and their Gentrification and Eviction Shuttles. These septic and toxic, broken people have said some of the most hateful things to their opposition such as: “I hope you are evicted from your apartment out on your ass in a year,” and that was written by a troll merely because someone from their opposition criticized one of the troll’s politicians. I can’t imagine saying, “I hope you are evicted from your apartment out on your ass in a year” to anyone, even an “enemy” (if I had one). It leaves me asking: What type of person would say something like that to somebody? These corporatist trolls want San Francisco to be a city of and for the one-percent and wealthy only. Their glib response is that anyone who cannot afford to live in wealthy San Francisco can move to Oakland (in the East Bay across the Bay from San Francisco) or to another city, the trolls say. If you can’t afford to live in San Francisco, they say “leave.” They have no regard or respect for one’s family being completely uprooted from other local family members, their friends and/or their neighbours. So I went over to another local website and that, too, is mainly infested with the same trolls that are on the other site (but not using the handle “Guest”). The comments read the same. Smug, elitist, class-ist, the standard line: “if you can’t afford to live in San Francisco, move to Oakland,” and “those who are complaining about the wealthy are envious of them” (reality: no, they are complaining about gentrification and seeing long-term residents evicted from their apartments and kicked out of the city which has zero to do with “envy”). Some of the comments on that second local website look like a copy and paste job from the other site. As with the first website, there are less than ten people commenting. It’s the same trolls over and over. Mainly libertarians, neoliberals, neocons, conservatives, right-wingnuts. That’s how they’ve been described by some of the writers of the first website. That group of rabid, hateful trolls own both forums with their comments. The excessive troll comments on both websites would appear to be the trolls’ employment as much time and energy as they spend responding to nearly every comment on there from their position that only they (the omnipotent trolls) know the truth, and trying to get a rise out of others. Nobody has that much time to write reams and reams of comments each day on two websites, unless they’re being paid by somebody and I have no doubt some of them are on the payroll of some corporatists of the Real Estate Industrial Complex and their Corrupt Liars and/or The Tech Surveillance-State Industrial Complex.

I read an article about the chairperson of Google being awarded US$106 million in bonuses on el 4 de febrero de 2014. I found that rather outrageous. Another example of income inequality and “the haves” versus “the have nots.” On the site the article was on, there were about 13 comments. Nearly all pro-Google, extreme gushing over (the surveillance-state accomplice) Google as the “end all,” by the pro-corporatist, smug, elitist trolls. From reading the comments, one would have thought that Google were the best thing to happen to the Earth since oxygen. One person wrote what I would have written:

“…in other noticias/news: US Senate votes to slash $8.7 billion in food assistance

Can you guess what the troll response to that was?

“So? Get a job. Problem solved.”

Life is so simplistic in the “mind” (the word “mind” used advisedly) of trolls. A very predictable response. I’ve read that response countless times in response to other things. The trolls of today are in dire need of new material because they have become so predictable. In this case, this troll vegetates in a black and white world with no gray, s/he is glib, flippant and cold (an empty vessel inside with no feelings whatsoever). S/he doesn’t give a damn about people having their food stamps cut. All s/he is concerned about and cheer-leads for is a mega-tech corporation (Google) involved in the surveillance-state.

(Related: The heads of Google, Facebook, Microsoft and other major US corporations made billions of dollars on shares in their own companies last year due to a surge in stock values fueled by the Federal Reserve’s money-printing policies.)


One wonders whether the septic trolls had a lobotomy before or after they were born? I’ve never met anyone that thinks or acts like they do. Based on their troll posts, they are really the scum of the Earth and a type of person I did not know existed before the Internet. So that is one major negative aspect about the Internet. They are definitely unique among trolls, and seem extremely attracted to this one local website, which most of them claim to have no respect for or regard for and they hate on the site constantly, yet they can’t seem to pry themselves away from the place. And unfortunately, this local website does nothing about them which is why I don’t feel comfortable recommending the site to anyone. I had originally thought that they allowed the trolls free-rein to their forum for website hits so they can tell their advertisers how many hits the site gets per month. I no longer think that because all of the ads on their site are through Google, the same Google that the site is often justifiably writing about negatively. The fact that they have Google ads is very hypocritical on their part. And because they allow the trolls on their site to say anything they want including hate speech, this local site is really part of the problem and they share responsibility for the state of things in San Francisco, while they pretend to be “progressives.” Chau.—rosa barrio


CIA Trolls Infect the Net

CIA Internet Trolls

 The Worst Internet Trolls Might Be Mentally Ill

5 Ways to Stop Trolls From Killing the Internet

Internet trolls are maddening, but a lecturer has set up a guide to interacting with them

BBC Tracks Down And Confronts An Internet Troll