With the birth of the internet, it became significantly easier for people to reach out or to get their thoughts across. Message boards, forums, e-mail, chat rooms–these were only some of the ways people got in touch to express their ideas. As technology improved, it was inevitable that the way people conversed with each other online changed as well.
Social media allowed people to build profiles online that they could use to whatever manner they wanted–provided that they weren’t breaking any laws. It was pretty great, at first. Friends and strangers could get their ideas out and find like-minded individuals. When conversation occurs, it is expected that disagreements would happen.
However, as of the past few years, this has morphed into something quite horrible indeed. Rather than expressing ideas in a healthy and productive manner, people have devolved into creating argument merely for argument’s sake. No actual thought or reasoning–simply a mesh of words designed to illicit a response out of the reader.
The trolls have truly evolved through they years. If anything, they’ve gotten worse. You can’t scroll through a news report on Facebook without coming across one of them.
Trolls live off of the negative emotions they illicit. If you’ve ever watched the 20th season of South Park, you’d see a true blue example of an internet troll. It’s a person who thinks that being negative is just fun and games.
The horrid thing about the trolls of this sort is that they aren’t a coincidence. A lot of them are actually fake profiles that are paid for. Yes, you heard that right. Some people have turned being a toxic waste of space into a career. These people are paid to create rude or divisive comments on posts (especially political ones) in order to draw people into a pointless argument.
True argument only occurs when ideas are exchanged and there is growth in both parties.
When all you do is throw hateful speech at one another, that isn’t an argument. That’s two monkeys hurling feces at each other while believing the crap hurled at their face doesn’t affect them in the least. This is one of the main reasons why I don’t really have an active online profile in any of the large social media websites. I used to but I got sick of all the armchair activists and the holier-than-thou personas that I just decided to unplug.
You know, what? That’s honestly one of the best decisions I’ve made. I don’t have the addiction to affirmation as a lot of people I know do. Getting that like or heart or whatever it is that gives people that rush of dopamine isn’t in my life. I’m not saying that you should go do that as well.
You go do you, fam. I just found a way that works for me. Being away from all that online filth makes sure that I don’t encounter trolls on my feed on a constant basis.
If you do ever encounter a troll, don’t feed it. Don’t engage. Simply ignore or immediately block them. Save yourself the headache. Your mental health will thank you for it.