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Troll Hunting

(152 Posts)
IthoughtATMwasacashpoint Sat 03-Oct-15 10:11:00

Another thread lost through thoughtless, unresearched, troll hunting.

Is it possible for MNHQ to start handing out bans for this?

It's not difficult to follow the rules, if in doubt report. Search the user name, then report if you still have doubts.

It's neither funny nor clever to drive upset and vulnerable people off their threads and away from the support and advice they sought by posting in the first place.

AlisonWunderland Sat 03-Oct-15 10:14:41

I agree.
Yes, real trolls can be irritating but I think there should be at least a temporary ban for on-thread troll hunting.

The way I see it, even if the OP is not genuine, the advice given can be of benefit to others who don't feel they can post

Samcro Sat 03-Oct-15 10:16:04

perhaps mn hq could sort out the trolls.

AloraRyger Sat 03-Oct-15 10:21:37

I'd much rather see HQ sort the trolls. Trolls can be massively damaging to large numbers of vulnerable people - call me heartless but one genuine person being accused of trolling is fine by me if it means that lots more actual troll threads are stopped in their tracks by someone posting that its probably not what it seems.

MN is the only forum I've come across where people who point out that threads have been created by trolls are treated with more contempt than the people doing the trolling. I find it such an odd stance.

Sparklingbrook Sat 03-Oct-15 10:32:13

YY the Trolls need sorting first.

greenhill Sat 03-Oct-15 10:52:11

Agree with sparkling

exLtEveDallas Sat 03-Oct-15 10:54:16

How about the trolls get banned rather than the people that are simply trying to help our more gullible posters not to get sucked in. Wouldn't that be a better idea?

I mean, it's weird. I always assume that the people putting the boot into troll hunters must have something to lose - you know, like being trolls themselves? But why would someone admit to that?

ThenLaterWhenItGotDark Sat 03-Oct-15 11:39:51

"It's neither funny nor clever to drive upset and vulnerable people off their threads and away from the support and advice they sought by posting in the first place"

And that's exactly what vile, disgusting, lowlife scum trolls do.

So, yes, HQ has some sorting to do. And until they do, then their membership (who aren't stupid, trolldars are very highly honed after the last couple of years utter shite that gets posted on here) are going to have to keep doing it for them.

MrsDeVere Sat 03-Oct-15 13:37:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

IthoughtATMwasacashpoint Sat 03-Oct-15 14:36:03

I don't think anyone is excusing trolls, but the site has rules. No troll hunting on thread. If you think it's a troll report it. I'm certainly not saying that no action should be taken against trolls once proved they should be banned, but it should be done through reporting to MNHQ not veiled hints on the thread that a certain famous poster hasn't posted on the thread - inference it must be a troll thread.

The last one was ridiculous. Long term member and poster posting for advice because she's found out her husband has an OW.

Out of the blue someone decides to post "So and so has not posted on this thread", the inference being that if she hadn't posted it must be a troll thread then several people decided they had been thinking this too, followed by a lot of people telling them not be be ridiculous and that the person who hadn't posted on that thread would be mortified if she was being used as a benchmark for troll posts. Posts removed, MNHQ come on the thread saying the poster is genuine and upset poster leaves thread.

Sparklingbrook Sat 03-Oct-15 14:40:28

Who is the famous poster? <intrigued>

I am guessing this is all in the Relationships topic, which I have firmly hidden, because of all the trolling.

spanisharmada Sat 03-Oct-15 14:40:53

Some of the troll hunting is pretty nasty tbh, other posters are no authority on who is, and who is not a troll. I agree, people should report and let MNHQ sort it out.

usual Sat 03-Oct-15 14:50:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnyFucker Sat 03-Oct-15 14:58:35

This thread is a TAAT and needs to be deleted. People who weren't on the thread are going to be intrigued who the "famous poster" is (me), why that poster thinks she is an arbiter of what is real and what is not on MN (I don't) and if that original poster was genuine just keeps the subject in active conversations, potentially causing further upset.

sliceofsoup Sat 03-Oct-15 15:01:08

If a thread on an online forum is going to hurt you then you shouldn't be on the internet, whether its real or not. People lie all the time, in RL as well as online. We should be taking everything we read on here with a pinch of salt.

I am sick of reading an OP and then in the first 5 posts reading things like "Welcome to MN" or "Great first post OP". FFS if you suspect its fake report it and let MNHQ look at it. STOP ADVANCED SEARCHING EVERYONE. Tbh I think MNHQ should just disable that function.

AnyFucker Sat 03-Oct-15 15:02:43


Sparklingbrook Sat 03-Oct-15 15:02:58

Advanced Search is very useful for reporting. You can do the search then report to MN as 'Interesting First Post'.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Sat 03-Oct-15 15:06:14

Troll hunting would be absolutely fine if the OP were a troll. Sadly there are times when the troll hunters are wrong.

Trolls should definitely be banned. But people who troll hunt on thread should get a substantial suspension (at least 48hrs?)

It's really not that hard to simply hit the report button.

Also we are all adults. We should have the self-awareness to not give more of ourselves than we can afford or however MN phrases it.

spanisharmada Sat 03-Oct-15 15:07:34

How do MN sort the trolls other than deleting reported threads? (Genuine question)

Sparklingbrook Sat 03-Oct-15 15:09:30

The problem is and I hate to say this but the speed in which the reports are dealt with.
Troll threads can run on for a while before anything is done by which time people can get a bit 'wtf'.

Late at night over the weekend is not a good time to report and expect any sort of speedy result.

If the Report function had a box to tick that said 'I think this is a troll' could that be dealt with more urgently?

BeatriceAndHero Sat 03-Oct-15 15:12:27

I agree with the OP.

I wholly recognise the point made by MrsDeVere and others, but - perhaps speaking as a member of senior management in a secondary school - if a student tells a teacher to fuck off or something as serious, we deal with that instantly and harshly.

Disruptive behaviour - shouting out, attention seeking, silliness - may not be as 'serious' but just as disruptive and impacts on other students' learning more than the first example does. I put troll hunting in the latter category. It really impedes my enjoyment of Mumsnet and I think others feel the same.

It isn't 'either/or' - both trolling and troll-hunting is unacceptable.

JamesBob Sat 03-Oct-15 15:13:46

I think it happens far too much. Most threads eventually get a 'I don't think this is real' type post if they carry on for long enough.

It's happened to me a few times. I have never, ever made up a scenario and always post genuinely (I did start a spoof one once many years ago - never since, and it was IMO fairly obviously nonsense and just to make people laugh)

So you sit there going 'Oh not again. So and so always thinks it's a troll even when it's not'. And you either keep posting and defend yourself or you walk away, depending on how vulnerable you might be feeling at the time.

I can understand it if people are being drawn in IRL and it's very serious. I have sat on my hands many times in those situations.

If it's just a relationship thing you need help with, or similar, no big deal, not requiring RL intervention, no shock or horror to it and no one is getting very invested anyway, then it seems to be that people just post 'I don't believe this' so they can say 'I wasn't taken in' if it turns out to be bollocks.

I think that's pretty unnecessary.

Sparklingbrook Sat 03-Oct-15 15:13:49

I am liking the 'instantly' bit Beatrice. There is no 'instantly' on MN.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Sat 03-Oct-15 15:15:45

I would actually be interested in seeing the stats in deletion speeds. I can't help but wonder if sometimes slow deletions are because people are busy troll hunting on the thread and forget to actually report to MNHQ.

I think it is important that MN deals with trolls quickly, but it must be very hard to tell in some cases if an OP is a troll or a genuine first time poster with a genuinely desperate unusual situation. MN is never going to get it right all of the timenso should they err "in favour" of the trolls, or should they delete the occasional genuine person in need?

BeatriceAndHero Sat 03-Oct-15 15:17:28

No, but then that would be the equivalent of the child sullenly sitting in the back of the classroom waiting for somebody to collect him/her, wouldn't it? smile Not acceptable, won't be tolerated - but the lesson can continue.

How many times do regular Mumsnetters have to state that when they name changed to start a personal thread they were accuse of trolling and they were not? It has happened to me and I generally consider myself fairly sensible and grounded but I was surprised at how shaken it left me! I ended up posting a photograph of something that proved the bereavement was real - only for Mumsnet to delete the thread due to me compromising my identity!

It's surprising how much I still loathe those posters, which partly explains how strong my view is.

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