Asking for some clarity about what is and isn't trolling

First, I don’t want us to draw a line: this isn’t a court, and drawn lines like that lead to worse behavior.

Second, what’s the danger of labeling something “trolling” when it’s really “ridiculous shit”? Is the danger that people will think twice before posting ridiculous shit? because o noes.

I tend not to pay attention to the poster who starts a given thread, so that may be why such behavior from Velocity never pinged my radar. If this is the case I rescind some of my skepticism. Still, I’m curious what a mod has to say.

Sounds like you’ve already PM’d with the mods, and they already gave you an answer that you didn’t like, so you chose to air your grievance in a public ATMB thread in order to get others on your side. It may be best that you actually make your case.

I technically PM’d only one mod (I don’t know if we’re allowed to reveal contents of PMs or if that is another violation of the rules.) I didn’t hear back from others, so I wanted to consult with more mods at ATMB. Unless there is some PM-all-mods function I don’t know of.

Basically, trolling can often be indistinguishable from extreme stupidity. Whether or not you actually meant that post, it was clearly made without the slightest thought about whether your scenario was plausible or not. Hopefully, in the future you will consider whether something you post might be considered trolling or not before you make it.

Here are some of his recent threads:


(this one is notable because the article he links shows a number of times when republicans overtook democrats since 2004, so his thread title is full of shit)

PS: Hey, I earned a badge for this post! “First Link” :smiley:

Is there something…wrong about those threads? (asking atheists what they would want a god to be like if there had to be one, or threads about presidential duties, or what is RINO/DINO behavior?)

We have threads about hypothetical visits from space aliens, Bigfoot, zombie apocalypses, “what if Hitler won WWII,” and those aren’t seen as controversial.

Literally while we’re talking about this, Urbanredneck is starting a thread in Politics & Elections. Based on the idea that some people want a truth & reconciliation commission to investigate possible criminal violations committed by the Trump administration over the past four years, he starts Just Asking Questions like,

Man, I really want to hold respectful conversations with conservatives. I’m having a great one with Falchion in another thread, so shout-out to him. But goddammit, y’all. The extreme stupidity of some of these conservative posts.

The problem that I have with the post under discussion is that there is a huge FACTUAL problem with the vote-forging theory.

Each ballot, even a ballot not received by Election Day, is linked to a specific voter that requested an absentee ballot. Pennsylvania KNOWS how many absentee ballots they sent and to whom they sent them.

So it’s just not possible to massively forge ballots in the manner described. Any such plan would’ve had to start with forged ballot applications. I’m not saying that any fraud is impossible, just that the mechanism you describe doesn’t line up with the facts.

It’s possible that Pennsylvania will even be able to call the election on Election Day, because they know how many people received ballots but didn’t cast a vote. If it’s a small number, the three day wait may be insignificant.

There’s a lot of doubt and misinformation, whipped up by Trump and friends, around this election and we don’t need anymore. It reflects a basic lack of knowledge as to how absentee voting works, and we don’t need that.

Threads about aliens, bigfoot, zombie apocalypses, etc aren’t designed to poke at people’s political buttons with simplistic, surface level, broad brush generalizations. And if you had a couple threads like that, that would be one thing; yet almost every one of your threads seems to be designed to push some kind of button.

Either you’re a low level and mostly entertaining troll or your Ops are consistently jerkish but only just enough to rile people up a little. This makes it look like you’re a troll even if you’re not. That is my take.

Your warning seemed warranted in this case, you pushed, even if by accident a little too far this time considering your body of work.

I’m saying this as a new Mod. so I guess I’ll add staff color to it.

Vote fraud on that scale simply doesnt happen.

And where did Velocity get the idea you could send mail from one edge of the Keystone State to the other in one to two days?

Again, Velocity you made what you should have known would be an incendiary post without the slightest forethought.

That would require too high a
:dark_sunglasses:
velocity. YEAAAAHHHHH!

First, all the arguments about voting center on the risk of fraud… The question posed is whether 3 days (as opposed to 2 or 4 or 10) plays meaningfully into a controversy already underway.

Second, it’s my understanding that ballots will be mailed and counted within the same county. So most will be carrier-sorted overnight and delivered the next day within the zipcode., even by the USPS.

Given those two not-very-troll-like assumptions, what is wrong with the pretext?

Try reading the whole thread, please.

I don’t want to be mean, but I’d suggest checking out your name in the Pit troll identification thread. You’ll see both arguments for why some think you are trolling and why others think it is just accidental.

The most basic is your OPs where you say something controversial, then an argument breaks out that you most often don’t take part in, unless the thread seems to stall, then you pop back in. And, even when you do, you don’t seem to acknowledge the discussion, and you keep on asking the same sorts of questions as if you’re not actually reading the replies. That makes it seem like you’re just making posts to get people arguing for you.

Throw in “let me have my fun,” and it appears to confirm the side saying you were trolling. If your topic is serious, it’s incongruous to make a joke like that. But if you were just having fun getting people to argue, then…

It requires unlikely, stupid or impossible things to happen for the 3 day grace period to increase the risk of fraud.

  • It requires someone to prepare thousands of fraudulent ballots before the election, and NOT mail them until it is clear that the election is up for grabs, i.e. after the polls close.
  • It requires ballots to be postmarked on Election Day, after the polls close and after the first counts come in.
  • It requires that fraudsters know who is or isn’t voting absentee, and whether or not that person has, in fact, voted already.

Channeling my inner Potter Stewart: I know it when I see it.

So I think the term has changed (as terms tend to do) from the original meaning.

Originally Trolls were people who would post outrageous and sometimes offensive things (that they do not personally believe) on internet debates not to sensibly take part in the debate, just to rile people up and get a response (hence the warning “Don’t feed the trolls”)

I think in popular media the term is now also used to mean people who target and harass individuals online.

I assume the warning was the former meaning, which seems pretty harsh to me. I mean it seems totally wrong, but not particular outrageous or designed to get a rise out of people (unless there is a bit of your post you aren’t showing)