Trolling for Compliments (#2?)

Somehow my Naming the Enemy post somehow metamorphosed into Trolling for Compliments in some links. This is the post I meant to write under that title.

Trolls (and are they a bad thing for Israel Advocacy)?

Thanks to UrbanDictionary.com for the definition.

One who posts a deliberately provocative message to a newsgroup or message board with the intention of causing maximum disruption and argument.

Internet trolling

Internet trolling. To be or not to be?

Is it just that I’m more likely to be reading them or are their more trolls in Israel oriented groups than any others? It certainly feels like it. It’s hard to imagine a blog for vegetarians constantly fighting off commenters who want to argue the merits of a juicy medium-rare slice of porterhouse, or even the National Rifle Association plagued by gun control lobbyists – or vice versa in both cases – but just about any group with Israel in the name will find long, time wasting, sometimes bitter, insulting and rant-filled debates about the existence of the state.

In this I’m not just talking about political blogs, such as this one, the trolls find them all, especially in English. I’m a member of a number of Arab Nations–Israel groups on Facebook, for example, the Lebanon & Israel Facebook group and the trolls come in droves. It’s all annoying and we aim to limit it here but it does raise a question. Should we be commenting on Destroy Israel Lobby sites? Is there a plus side for trolls?

There’s a little mea culpa here. Sometimes when I’m feeling a little masochistic I do comment, politely, to the point and directly on topic to these sites.  Often they never pass moderation. Sometimes they disappear after being up for a while and occasionally they raise much antisemitic fury from other commenters. Sometimes, very occasionally, they generate a polite, to the point and directly on topic reply.

Is it worth it? Are we preaching to the converted and wasting our time? Is the possibility of giving a coronary to a hater justification in itself? What do you think?


About David Guy

B.A./B.C.A. (Communication and Media Arts) University of Wollongong, AUSTRALIA M.A. in Government (Diplomacy and Conflict Studies) Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya, ISRAEL Twitter @5MFI
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