You killed my Horse, I’ll kill your Horse – Oops 2 Dead Horses

- September 13, 2012 3 MIN READ


Ridiculous topics deserve ridiculous titles.

Let me start things off with a couple of definitions:

Trolling: In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory,[2] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as a forum, chat room, or blog, with the primary intent of provoking readers into an emotional response[3] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.[4] The noun troll may refer to the provocative message itself, as in: “That was an excellent troll you posted.”

Cyber Bullying: Cyberbullying is defined in legal glossaries as

  • actions that use information and communication technologies to support deliberate, repeated, and hostile behavior by an individual or group, that is intended to harm another or others.
  • use of communication technologies for the intention of harming another person
  • use of internet service and mobile technologies such as web pages and discussion groups as well as instant messaging or SMS text messaging with the intention of harming another person.

Examples of what constitutes cyberbullying include communications that seek to intimidate, control, manipulate, put down, falsely discredit, or humiliate the recipient. The actions are deliberate, repeated, and hostile behavior intended to harm another. Cyberbullying has been defined by The National Crime Prevention Council: “when the Internet, cell phones or other devices are used to send or post text or images intended to hurt or embarrass another person.

Yesterday as everyone on twitter would be well aware the Daily Telegraph launched a #StoptheTrolls campaign. Now I could be a cynical bastard here and say that it was all a bit of publicity to get some high profile people on board and attract people to their online publication – but I actually believe the people behind it had the best intentions in mind when creating the campaign and are indeed really passionate about putting a stop to “cyber bullying” 

It is important to note the difference between a bully and a troll online. A Bully hurts people. A Troll provokes people.

Let he who is innocent of Trolling throw the first Stone

Since Charlotte Dawson’s awful Cyber Bullying incident [the word] Troll has been getting bandied about more than the word [migraine] does by that hypochondriac co-worker that takes too many sickies. Trolling is not a “new thing” Trolling is not an “internet only” thing – In fact Trolling has been around long before the internet. Where?

  • Remember when you used to make those funny prank calls as a kid and get a reaction? – Trolling
  • Remember when you used to put fake love letters in someone’s desk at school? – Trolling
  • Remember when the internet first came out and you used to toy with people on msn chat? – Trolling

It’s your fault Jack Dorsey – Why are you allowing people to Decide what they write on Twitter!!

In any of those scenarios were the tools or platforms used for the purpose of trolling ever blamed. No. Who was? The people behind the actions. Twitter is a platform, and saying that Jack Dorsey is responsible for the content published on twitter is like saying Word Press is responsible for the content that I post on Shoe String and every other publication that uses their platform. It is a stupid argument, you own the twitter account YOU own the content. See it really isn’t that difficult, right?

My Horse, Your Horse – 2 Dead Horses

If you are going to launch a campaign, you need to understand exactly what you are doing. With such hyper connected platforms in the social media space, it is easy – as we saw today to start exhibiting the behaviour you are speaking out against. The People against Trolling became the Trolls provoking reactions from people left right and centre, essentially sending [what could have been a great opportunity to stand up against #cyberbullying pre- R U OK Day ] – the campaign spiralling into a complete mockery where by days end #TrollMovies was the major topic trending across the country.

If Someone kills your horse and you just kill their horse back – you just end up with two dead horses. We need to start thinking of different ways to combat topics online and offline so we stop going round in circles and actually solve these issues. The #StoptheTrolls hashtag yesterday only gave credit to proposals around a higher level of monitoring around what we do on the internet by the Government.

Um Hashtag China anyone ….