How to Defeat a Social Media Troll Before Raging Back Becomes a Habit
Over Share Much?
Online trolls have been around since the beginning of the internet. Chat rooms, Facebook, Twitter etc. can be a hotbed of roving scrolling troll activity. More often than not, serious trolls (those who go out of their way to type a particularly mean post or hurtful comment) need an online audience to feel better about whatever is bothering them. “Trollers” are hungry for attention, unsatisfied with something, and need to project their frustrations on someone.
Some of us, (okay mainly me!) get lured into responding because we want to educate our online attackers. Not so much about their breach of cyber etiquette, but ultimately, the real lesson I want to impart to my “hater” is: I am not the one to play with . Than before I know it, it’s been three hours, my eyes are tired, my throat is sore (from yelling at my screen needlessly) and all because some cyber jerk has decided to vent at me.
It can be satisfying at first, unloading on the numbskull picking at you, but after the rush of adrenaline has worn off, the next feeling you’ll often have is regret. Regret at the time and energy wasted on some unfunny, uninformed below average cyber delinquent.
Here are 4 helpful facts I used to break my bad habit of responding to unwarranted social media attacks;
1. You are not their entertainment . Do not forget that, initially, (aside from getting information) that this is what the web was for; just pure harmless entertainment. There is nothing to be gained by engaging in a heated online conflict with someone you have never met. The other person has a right to their own narrow minded opinions, and you have the right not to accept them! Why waste your precious energy, time and focus on someone with anti-social issues who thrives on misery and contention?
2. Do not engage. Nothing will be solved by typing a stream of obscenity laced insults at someone who can not be reached by reason or self respect. Drawing attention to you is the only way they have power and ruining your day (more often than not) is their exact intention. Above all else, try not to give them the satisfaction!
3. Relax, it is not that crucial . The World Wide Web is full of caring and sharing people who are emotionally mature and share your interests. Removing yourself from the negative tension and finding another online community is the first sign of true emotional progress.
4. You are only human. Even if you have lowered yourself to their level and responded back, do not beat yourself up over it . It is never too late to simply disconnect and move onto better and brighter things now that the moment has passed.
Although I wasted a lot of my youth (and dignity) responding to grumpy internet antisocialists, now, I just remember my little fact list and enjoy being above the nonsense.