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jca's avatar

What's the difference between someone being an antagonistic jerk who gets to remain and someone who is considered a troll and gets kicked off?

Asked by jca (36043points) January 12th, 2016

Every now and then there is a new Jelly who is an antagonistic jerk. They may last a while and then eventually will get kicked off. There will be talk of that person having been a troll.

Sometimes they stick around a long time and don’t seem to get kicked off.

What’s the difference between someone being a jerk who gets to remain and someone who is considered a troll and gets kicked off?

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57 Answers

Coloma's avatar

I don’t know how this is ascertained by the mods, all I know is there have been several, extremely antagonistic types over the years that while now gone for whatever reasons, were allowed to run roughshod for quite awhile. A fluther mystery.

Cruiser's avatar

Nothing more and nothing less than a mere passing moment that should not overtly affect anyone for their main purpose of being a member/jelly here. Just like road kill or an accident when driving down the road….nothing you can do to change the moment other than to not overtly rubber neck and move along so you do not slow down other people who want to cruise along unabated.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

If the person is clever and they avoid attacking individual people and don’t break any rules, they can be as obnoxious as they like. The majority might not like their questions or their responses, but as long as they’re not actively attacking other members, they’re not going to get banned for having controversial opinions. They can even disagree with other members, but as long as they only disagree with their ideas, they won’t get into trouble. And really, I don’t think they should be banned for being obnoxious or controversial. We all have different ideas about what is obnoxious or controversial. I think the community is quite capable of speaking up when people are posting trollish comments. If a member’s contributions annoy us but don’t cross the line that would lead to banning, we can always scroll past their contributions.

Seek's avatar

Having a few obnoxious people is good for the community as a whole. Makes it interesting, keeps us showing up to argue with them.

Just let it happen.

dappled_leaves's avatar

What @Earthbound_Misfit said. It’s a matter of style and skill.

rojo's avatar

I don’t really worry about it. Someone is here, they are a jerk and then they are gone. Did they leave because they got bored or did they get kicked out? Don’t know, really don’t care I guess, am satisfied they are gone.

As far as I know, we don’t maintain a list of those ejected. Perhaps we should. Hmmmmmmmmmm…...........

longgone's avatar

While all trolls are jerks, not all jerks are trolls. A troll would be anyone who deliberately tries to hurt the community. Outright attacks, use of hate speech, and conflicting stories are warning signs, but they are rarely definitive. This is why it takes days to ban trolls, as opposed to banning spammers. We need to become aware of a possible troll (flags help), then observe the user in question, and, finally, discuss whether a ban is warranted. Obviously, we have to be careful of going overboard here. Some new users just need a little while to adapt to Fluther, and may appear to be trolls simply because they are used to a different type of internet platform.

It is true that some trolls are very skilled at deception, and it is also true that obnoxious behavior is not reason enough to be banned from Fluther.

filmfann's avatar

Silly me. I thought this was going to be a 30k party for a certain jelly who fits the description.

JLeslie's avatar

I’m not sure of the difference.

I know there have been some jellies who really rubbed people the wrong way, who didn’t bother me at all.

For me, the biggest irritants are jellies who are passive aggressive and actually ignore questions during a conversation, and jellies who ask questions just to get a rise out of people.

jca's avatar

Note that I’m not talking about anybody who has been here a long time (years). Our “jelly community” has all kinds of people and I know many get pissed off at a few. I think that diversity is good.

johnpowell's avatar

I think intent should play a big role. Habitual jerk vs occasional jerk. I can be a jerk but that isn’t my entire reason for being here. I would like to think I am occasionally helpful. My main reason for being here is to learn random shit and to help if I can. My inner jerk is just leakage.

Some people are here to just stir up shit. That is the problem.

Coloma's avatar

I agree with @johnpowell‘s sentiments.
. Big difference between disagreement and flat out shit stirring, name calling and bullying.
Not acceptable.

dammitjanetfromvegas's avatar

I think it helps to look at their answers. Does this person give helpful advice on other questions here or do they give absurd answers on questions and only ask antagonistic questions. I know of one member who has been here for years that rubs many the wrong way with some of their questions and this person (imo) is bullied for it, but this person also gives very helpful answers to others. A troll would not do this.

ucme's avatar


Sometimes I think the “community” needs to look closer to home, there’s a definite siege mentality with the easily offended & oversensitive among us when it comes to personal dislike of any particular member.
Throwing around words like “troll” & “jerk” could well be wide of the mark in a few cases at least.
A lot of idiots have been dealt with accordingly, leave it to the mods who are best placed to judge on a pattern of behaviour rather than a knee jerk reaction based largely on personality clashes.

jca's avatar

@dammitjanetfromvegas: I think I know the member you are talking about and I like him. He gives funny responses and I know he pisses people off, but he responds to people in such a way that I find refreshing.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit, I too think I know who you’re referring to @dammitjanetfromvegas, and I agree wholeheartedly with your comment. I also like this person and I am glad they’re part of our community.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

I meant @dammitjanetfromvegas. :-). I just noticed this in the feed and thought why am I talking to myself in text!

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

It depends on the context of the trolling. Constructive trolling is a thing and several of us are guilty. Stuff like using two logins to troll is not acceptable and I have a feeling this is something that’ll get you kicked off.

tinyfaery's avatar

Is this about me?

jca's avatar

@tinyfaery: No. You’re not an antagonistic jerk. It’s not about any long term members. It was about two new members.

JLeslie's avatar

@tinyfaery I don’t see how anyone would think you are a troll.

dammitjanetfromvegas's avatar

@jca Maybe you and I aren’t on the same page. I was thinking about chicken flap arms.

ibstubro's avatar

I didn’t know we lost two new members.

I didn’t thing the uber city dweller was bad enough to be banned, content wise.
I can only guess that the mods had prior-infraction info on him that we didn’t.
Sure generated a lot of traffic, and some of it was pretty funny.
I had thought jerk, mod said troll.
Works for me. Just as well nip it in the bud before it escalates.

Cruiser's avatar

@ibstubro “I didn’t think the uber city dweller was bad enough to be banned, content wise. Sure generated a lot of traffic, and some of it was pretty funny.”

I felt the same way.

ibstubro's avatar

Everyone seemed to remain fairly civil, @Cruiser.
I’ve seen worse from long-time members.

Seek's avatar

I don’t think he’s banned, guys.

Seek's avatar

Ah. Last time I had checked, he was still here. Thanks.

Seek's avatar

Shame, though, he was fun and not terribly abusive. I’ve seen much worse from regular members over the years. Myself included.

ibstubro's avatar

^ What I said, @Seek.

I don’t know who #2 is/was.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

^ lol @dammitjanetfromvegas. Hopefully, he’s keeping the old ladies happy with all his new found time. I didn’t find his posts worthy of banning either. As I said up there, the community was dealing with his silliness. As they do other silly posts. Perhaps the ban related to information we don’t have.

longgone's avatar

^ We could tell you, but then we’d have to kill ban you.

jca's avatar

For those who were wondering who I was referring to, since I didn’t want to name names.

The one troll referred to @ibstubro in his “Savoir Faire” post above was one.

The other troll was the OP of this question:

Cruiser's avatar

Good thing you didn’t name any names as we would have had to put you in the penalty box

jca's avatar

@Cruiser: I know. I was very careful hahaha.

ibstubro's avatar

I went back and looked at the Fast and Loud cars question and there was nothing said there that was less than cordial.

Door Number 2 obviously held a Troll. lol

jca's avatar

They both got kicked out of the building, as trolls. Just that one took longer to be removed.

Cruiser's avatar

@jca Seriously?? If that is the case then why am I still here?

What ever happened to all the fun in the world?

katykit's avatar

I have lurked here for quite a bit and from my experience the people who are jerks but not kicked are the ones who have more points. Meaning they have been here for a while. Fresh blood that are labeled jerks or trolls get kicked out quickly.

From the user feedback I have seen here, this community is mainly composed of people who are poor, sick, mentally ill, fat, divorced, single parents, and elderly or very young, so it doesn’t take much for someone here to be offended and consider the offender to be troll or a jerk. Especially if they’re new.

I don’t think these common statuses within the community members happened by chance. I think this was engineered by actively kicking out anyone who doesn’t share the same statuses as the community members with the exception of the the minority members who are labeled jerks or trolls but have been here a long time so they don’t get kicked out.

Cruiser's avatar

@katykit From someone who is NOT “poor, sick, mentally ill, fat, divorced, single parents, and elderly or very young” but has been here a lot longer than what is mentally sane, I get what you may have observed in your time lurking here but what you lack is context behind your observations of newbies who agitate the collective calm here are quickly dispatched. What you are indeed observing is many years of BS and bad behavior that the elders/mods here have endured and this hard earned experience of dealing with this BS and bad behavior allows for the people in charge to know rather quickly the true intentions of the newbies…plus they have the added ability to see things we don’t get to see like if said newbie is actually an old Jelly with a new identity just coming back to troll and cause more trouble or they are messaging Jellies and harassing them. So for the most part you or even I don’t get to always see the real reason someone new or even old has been scuttled and sent packing. Personally I don’t always agree with the house keeping rules here but I will almost never complain because I know I am always one mouse click away from going Neptune.

Seek's avatar

“poor, sick, mentally ill, fat, divorced, single parents, and elderly or very young”

You’d be hard pressed to find anyone that didn’t fit one or more of those traits, save our dear @Cruiser.

Cruiser's avatar

@Seek she would have had me with unhinged

ibstubro's avatar

That’s simply absurd, @katykit.
You’ve been a member all of 5 days, and during that time you’ve participated in 4 questions. The only answer you’ve given of substance I see is about the attacks on women in Germany 1–1-16 and I gave you GA for that.

You do realize that this isn’t “Survivor”, don’t you? We don’t get to vote people out of the pool. There are moderators, and the moderators follow guidelines that were established by the founders.

”... the people who are jerks but not kicked are the ones who have more points.”
Points denote longevity on the site more than anything. Please know that those people you consider jerks? Have been that way since they joined. Many may have considered them jerks, but that’s not against the rules”.

One of the newbies kicked off was obviously and deliberately race baiting. That’s not allowed.
The other “newbie” kicked off appears to have been a troll from days past that found a way to re-join. The Mods saw a clear reason to remove him from the site.

”...this community is mainly composed of people who are poor, sick, mentally ill, fat, divorced, single parents, and elderly or very young, so it doesn’t take much for someone here to be offended.”
Now, I personally find that statement offensive, but you know what? That doesn’t making any fucking difference.” The moderators aren’t the offense police. But if that’s the start of a pattern, you’ll probably eventually be deemed a troll and removed.

Lastly, have you read through the responses to this questions??
The majority of the members were lamenting the loss of the NY guy.
The mods had a legitimate reason for removing him. We accept that.

Now please, go answer some questions where you have valuable input, like you did on the Germany 1–1 question.

Oh, and if I haven’t told you already?
Welcome to Fluther!

Cruiser's avatar

Geez Louise @ibstubro Lighten up already! Attack answers like yours are a major reason newbies bail in days from here and why grumpy oldies like me call you out on this nonsense. Stop scaring the newbies and take a much needed breather! If you have something you need to communicate to others do so in a constructive way that fosters growth and not resentment.

jca's avatar

I do think that being new to a community and then pointing out negatives about the members is not the best way to ensure that that community welcomes you.

If I showed up at a party and announced that I noticed that everyone there was poor, sick, fat, mentally ill, whatever, they’d probably shun me for the rest of the evening, if they let me stay at all.

ibstubro's avatar

I’d say that being told “newbies who agitate the collective calm here are quickly dispatched” and “I know I am always one mouse click away from going Neptune” would likely make a new member leave faster than a brief tutorial of how the moderation system works, @Cruiser.

If someone joins and are told that they’re not allowed to rock the boat, and as long as they’re here they’re only one misstep from being booted, why would anyone stay?

chyna's avatar

@katykit has left the building.

ibstubro's avatar

I noted that, @chyna.
Almost make me wish I was a mod, so I’d know what happened.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Well I hope all the poor, sick, mentally ill, fat, divorced, single parents, elderly and very young are happy with themselves now!

janbb's avatar

I’m happy with myself, don’t know about the rest of you poor slobs!

dammitjanetfromvegas's avatar

Hey, the Broncos won. I’m happy! or is that the citalopram talking

Cruiser's avatar

“I’d say that being told “newbies who agitate the collective calm here are quickly dispatched” and “I know I am always one mouse click away from going Neptune” would likely make a new member leave faster than a brief tutorial of how the moderation system works,”

Unfortunately we have neither @ibstubro. Fluther also lacks the small print that would warn new Jellies that older seasoned members and mods have a very low threshold for shenanigans and that the first amendment carries no water here.

dappled_leaves's avatar

Ugh, must there be this much hand-wringing about whether or not a new person stays when they clearly do not want to be here? I’m not going to put on a hairshirt for every closed account. Where is my hairshirt, anyway? Maybe I left it at the clearner’s.

jca's avatar

Anybody has the right to say what they want. However, that doesn’t mean people are going to like it and welcome it, especially if the person is not diplomatic with their wording.

ibstubro's avatar

We have neither what? @Cruiser? Fill in the blanks

I wasn’t aware that “older seasoned members” had a vote on whether new members stay or go?
What defines an “older seasoned member”, and where are these enclaves held?

“Shenanigans?” Really? Shenanigans aren’t allowed? Off hand, I frequently see a Brit that’s full of shitnanigans. Lol, or a tenaclatious Brat?

I trust the mods did the right thing in suspending the newbies, and I leave it at that.
If an explanation comes from a source other than a mod, I consider it speculation and/of misinformation.

@katykit seemed to think Fluther was some sort of democracy. It is not.
Using phrases like “older seasoned members and mods” just serves to reinforce that misconception.
There are community standards upheld by the moderators.
If you question those standards, ask a moderator.
Simple, eh?

Cruiser's avatar

@ibstubro First impressions are everything in life including fantasy social Q&A websites like Fluther. I will never forget the ice cold reception I got here from the “old timers” who quickly made it clear the rowdy raucous behavior of those who migrated here from AB in Dec 2009 was very unwelcomed. Even if a newbie wanted to find out how to interact here the Help section here does not hint at the torches and pitchforks that awaited said newbie who may be seeking a place to let their hair down and have a bit of spunky fun if said fun exceeded the puritanical levels set here by those that think they own this place. Since I joined I have seen many a newbie do their thing here only to be chastised and criticized because they did not fit the neat profile of the select few who flagged and modded the shit out these newbies until in mere days they left in frustration and bewilderment.

What we lack is a welcome wagon and the one we did have recently passed. We also lack a warning sign for those to know that the tide pool is full of sharks that will eat you alive if you color outside the lines or God forbid have lousy spelling.

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