Tag: trolling

  • The highly evolved, politicised, social industry-based apparatus of personal destruction

    This is a disturbing and insightful piece from Richard Seymour. Highly recommend you subscribe to his Patreon if you haven’t already. He closes with the warning that it’s only “matter of historical contingency, lets say of the vagaries of uneven and combined development, that we do not yet have such a highly evolved, politicised, social […]

  • The arms race of celebrity

    This passage from Tim Wu’s The Master Switch pg 225 offers a useful account for making sense of the rise of a figure like Lawrence Fox. When the ‘arms race of exposure’ is more intense than ever because social media means a great many of us have entered into it, new strategies become necessary to […]

  • What happens when you meet a troll?

    This is one of the most engaging things I’ve ever seen on YouTube. I’d enthusiastically watch an entire web series built around this premise. There’s a whole research agenda waiting to be undertaken exploring the troll’s claim that he needed to be abusive in order to get noticed by Owen Jones.

  • Social media as asshole amplification technology, or, the moral psychology of platform architecture

    This is Jaron Lanier’s memorable description of social media in his new book Ten Arguments For Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now. Social media is a technology for asshole amplification. To be clearly seen in the fact that “since social media took off, assholes are having more of a say in the world” (pg 43). His […]

  • What is platform literacy?

    In the last couple of years, I’ve found myself returning repeatedly to the idea of platform literacy. By this I mean a capacity to understand how platforms shape the action which takes place through them, sometimes in observable and explicit ways but usually in unobservable and implicit ones. It concerns our own (inter)actions and how […]

  • The Sociology of Trolling

    What is a troll? The term is encountered with ever greater frequency yet its meaning has changed with the years, moving from a definition in terms of motivation (deliberately producing discord for amusement) to a definition in terms of behaviour (the fact of having produced discord in an online community). My fear is this change […]

  • Online armies at your command

    Towards the end of Kill All Normies, Angela Nagle discusses the chilling effect liable to ensue from the online harassment which journalists critical of the alt-right often now find themselves subject to. From pg 118: Multiple journalists and citizens have described in horrifying detail the attacks and threats against those who criticize Trump or figures of […]

  • Online Othering: Exploring the Dark Side of the Web

    Call for Papers – Edited Collection Online Othering: Exploring the Dark Side of the Web Editors: Dr Karen Lumsden (Loughborough University) and Dr Emily Harmer (University of Liverpool) The Internet plays a vital role in many aspects of our social, political and cultural lives and in the early days of its expansion there was much […]

  • Persistance, Searchability and Incivility

    This essay on ‘the cult of cruelty’ has some interesting points to make about the role of what danah boyd calls persistence and searchability in facilitating incivility online. It makes it possible to trawl through someone’s activity, enabling a degree of engagement with choices and representations that would not otherwise be possible: I’ve been thinking […]

  • Dealing with online harassment: guidance for academics

    These are some useful links I’ve stumbled across or had suggested to me. Any suggestions of other reading on this topic would be very welcome: Scholars under attack On dealing with online criticism and trolls for academics Best Practices for Conducting Risky Research and Protecting Yourself from Online Harassment

  • Out trolling the trolls

    I’ve just finished reading the excellent This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things by Whitney Phillips. It offers fascinating insights into the evolution of ‘trolling’ as a practice, leading from its original form of sub-cultural self-identification to the diffusion of the label across the entire spectrum of online activities deemed to be anti-social. Her […]

  • Social media for academics and the increasing toxicity of the online ecology

    In the last few months, I’ve begun to seriously plan a much more sophisticated follow-up to Social Media for Academics, investigating the implications of social media for academic labour. A crucial aspect of this, which seems likely to become much more so with each passing year, concerns the toxicity of many of the online environments in […]

  • Online Harassment

    In the last few months, I’ve been thinking a lot about online harassment. Even writing that sentence, I come face-to-face with my own privilege, as ‘online harassment’ is something I’m able to elect to think about rather than an unavoidable feature of my use of the internet. But the evidence is clear that online harassment […]

  • South Park’s theory of trolling: Trevor’s Axiom

  • The Pseudo-Catharsis of Social Media

    From Rethinking Social Exclusion, by Simon Winlow and Steve Hall, pg 73: Political protests these days are taken not as an indication that something is going wrong and that a significant number of the population are dissatisfied with the nation’s political leadership. Rather, they seem to indicate that a healthy and vibrant democracy is in […]

  • Collaborative Work and Social Media: Responding to the rapid spread of provocative content

    Collaborative Work and Social Media: Responding to the rapid spread of provocative content Special issue call for the Journal of Computer Supported Cooperative work  New extended deadline for submissions March 28th 2016! These call details are also available online at https://sites.google.com/site/digitalwildfireesrc/jcscw Special issue editors Marina Jirotka – University of Oxford William Housley – Cardiff University Rob […]

  • Call for Papers – Scold’s to Trolls; Social and Legal Responses to Visible and Audible Women

    The social ontology of trolling paper I’ve been pondering recently probably wouldn’t work for this but I plan to attend nonetheless: Scold’s to Trolls; Social and Legal Responses to Visible and Audible Women A one-day symposium: September 15th 2015 Organised by the Centre for Law and Society at Lancaster University Law School Keynote Speaker: Professor […]