Friday, May 20, 2005

Meta-Blogging 4. Trolls and References

Ben Wolfsen at Waste thinks about how the phenomenon of trolling has changed over the years. Here is the most useful paragraph:
I think that trolling can't really be done well on blogs or web-based message boards, at least not nearly as well as on Usenet. IMO, while Usenet-based trollings can be within one group, the prototypical troll depends on cross-posting between groups, one of which is trolled and the other of which is the troller, or at least the home group of the troller, because trollings are essentially ironic: the trolled audience doesn't know what's going on (or maybe they do know, but just! can't! help! responding!), and not just the troller, but also his audience, knows not only that a trolling is occurring, but also that the trolled audience is completely taken in. It's just not as fun otherwise. In fact it's kind of pathetic if you're the only one trolling a group; with cross-posting, or trolling within a group where some people take up the troll and others are taken in, there's some semblance of a social dynamic.

Later in Ben's entry, he provides some links to some "smashing trollings" from Usenet, but I'd swear I've seen worse in blog threads.

And Nadia of the Kinky Librarian (I've just discovered this blog, and I can say that, yes, she is kinky) posts a provisional bibliography of books on blogging:

Hewitt, Hugh. Blog: Understanding the Information Reformation That's Changing Your World. Nashville, Tenn.: Thomas Nelson, Inc., 2005.

Pax, Salam. The Clandestine Diary of an Ordinary Iraqi. New York: Grove Press, 2003.

Stone, Biz. Who Let the Blogs Out? A Hyperconnected Peek at the World of Weblogs. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2004.

Rodvilla, John (edited by). We've Got Blog: How Weblogs are Changing Our Future. Cambridge, Mass.: Perseus Publishing, 2002.


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