Dealing with Trolls on Your Blog

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blog-troll Oh trolls… what ever happened to the saying “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”  Here are some tips on how to cope with these disruptive folks.

DFTT:

Don’t Feed the Trolls!  Try not to acknoledge the disruptive behavior.  Encourge other users to do the same.  With out fuel, there is no fire.  This unfortunately will not work 100% of the time.  Some are stubborn, but this is a great way to start.

Study them:

Find out about your troll.  You can access their account information.  You can do a visual check and see if it all seems like a legitimate person.  Maybe even drop their info into Google and seeing what comes up.  Also don’t act on impulse, it may be a compromised account of valuable member or a contributor having and off day.  Understanding your troll can help in the diffusing of them.

Reverse Psychology:

Kill them with kindness.  Try to hear them out and get them to participate in a more constructive manner.  This might make them stop, change, or become even more of a nuisance.   It is worth a try.  Take the high road.

Buffer:

You can enable comment moderation.  This will require approval for each comment posted.  This will allow you to ignore the trolls attempts to upset your blog.  But, this can also harm the normal flow of your active visitors.  Waiting for moderation can be time consuming and kills the constant discussion aspect.  Maybe a temporary use of this will cure your troll infestation.  Feel it out.

Observe and report:

If things get out of control, cover your bases.  In extreme cases, threats and excessive harassment can lead to legal action.  If you feel that your troll might go down this path, document it.  You never know what may happen.

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