Tag Archives: trolls

The Problem With “Friends”

I have lots of “friends” online. These are folks who I may or may not know in the real world, but I tend to see a lot of them online in places like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. What I’m finding is that my “friends” who have pretty hard set political views tend to share the same kind of stuff, whether they’re liberal or conservative. If I were to put them in the same room together they would all probably be civil, get their views across in a relatively sane and measured way and then afterwards in the safety of their own environs they’d point out the idiocy of the other in a prototypical, Southern, bless-his-heart kind of way.

However, those same people have no problem sharing the most banal and inflammatory crap put out by “infurianators” on an almost hourly basis. Below is a picture of two “shares” that literally showed up on my Facebook timeline in order, one from a liberal and the other from a conservative. I deleted the friend info to keep the names off a public post, but believe me the items are legit. I get tired just thinking about the crap that’s gonna show up online until the 16 election, which thankfully is just a short 14 months away.


And you should see the comments under these things. Believe me when I say that both conservatives and liberals are prolific in their hyperbolic outrage.

Well Educated Trolls

You'd expect the comments on an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education to be somehow less troll-ish than comments in mainstream rags.  I guess that's why the comments on this article about the University of Alabama professor who shot a bunch of her colleagues seem even creepier than usual. The first commenter gets them off to a roaring start:

The tragedy at UAH was a racially motivated hate crime as evidenced by the shooting of minorities only. Dr. Robert O. Lawton, the chairman of the departmental committee that recommended against the killer's tenurel was not targeted even though he was at the meeting. She is a Harvard trained racist with the brain of a lunatic. Could it be that Harvard is a breeding haven for such lunatics?

One commenter manages to really poison the well in a couple of separate one sentence comments:

There is a good ceal of mental sickness among academics, not least among females.



and then there's the cryptic:

If that lady had no weapon how can she expressed her anger?From ancient time man are killing each other but their weapons were rudimental they killed few people. As mankind inventing new and new dangerous weapon killing is easy and horrible.Mankind inventing ultra effective weapons for safety but is living in more unsafe circumstance.
Leonard da Vinci realized that development of his military engineering skills once a source of pride and ambition was a grotesque error.While he continued to fill his notebooks with diagrams drawing and speculation.He wrote"I will not publish, not divulge such things because of evil nature of man.
Can today`scientists learn and lesson from da Vinci?

We can only hope that these people aren't actually involved in higher education.  What am I saying?  Why would higher ed be any different from other profession?  They've all got their share of whack jobs.