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How To Deal With Internet Bullies?

timothy posted about 6 years ago | from the warning-link-contains-classic-deep-trolling dept.

The Internet 724

creyes123 writes "I run a free website with an online model airplane design calculator. The number of registered users has quickly climbed and I've gotten many compliments. Out of nowhere, a fellow shows up and proceeds to bad mouth the calculator in a posting in one of my forums. After I politely point out that he's mistaken and should have looked at the documentation before posting, he changes the subject and bad mouths a different 'flaw.' The cycle repeats a few more times, with no apparent end in sight. I want to encourage folks to share their opinions, but constructive criticism was clearly not his goal. I feel that the whole episode was just a massive time waster for me. What did I do to deserve this? Could I have handled this better?"

cancel ×

724 comments

Stop Playing Their Game (5, Insightful)

gbulmash (688770) | about 6 years ago | (#24328415)

When you realize you're in a pointless and prolonged exchange with a time waster, bully, etc., get off the ride. "Thanks for your feedback. I'll keep it in mind as I plan future improvements."

- Greg

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (5, Funny)

Narpak (961733) | about 6 years ago | (#24328509)

I totally disagree with what you just said; further more I would like to add that you smell.

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (0)

negRo_slim (636783) | about 6 years ago | (#24328635)

Hubris! Pure and utter!

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328665)

Thanks for your feedback. I'll keep it in mind as I plan future improvements.

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (4, Funny)

Tumbleweed (3706) | about 6 years ago | (#24328691)

I totally disagree with what you just said; further more I would like to add that you smell.

Well your father was a hamster!

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (4, Funny)

COMON$ (806135) | about 6 years ago | (#24328735)

Ya, and your mother smelled of ELDERBERRIES!

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (0)

dr_dank (472072) | about 6 years ago | (#24328765)

As opposed to the other jerks you'll find responding to this thread, I will offer something constructive to the matter at hand.

Your shit's all retarded and you talk like a fag.

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (5, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 6 years ago | (#24328547)

When you realize you're in a pointless and prolonged exchange with a time waster, bully, etc., get off the ride. "Thanks for your feedback. I'll keep it in mind as I plan future improvements."

Just because you stop participating doesn't magically cause the troll to lose interest.

If you can give them a non-public outlet to share their critiques, that's great, but generally you pretty much have to ban or otherwise silence the persistent ones.

Why not just say ... (-1, Troll)

afxgrin (208686) | about 6 years ago | (#24328609)

FUCK OFF!!!

It's not hard to say (or type), gets the point across you do not like said person or their argument, and helps end the debate.

People seriously need to make more use of profane language.

At first I was doubting this article as News for Nerds, but no - it really is - since enough nerds are awkward about dealing with things like this.

Fuck off works quite well, try it sometime.

Re:Why not just say ... (5, Insightful)

WhatAmIDoingHere (742870) | about 6 years ago | (#24328645)

So, you're telling him to feed the troll? Let the troll know that he's getting to you, and he'll just do it more.

If you run the forum, the best solution is to ban him, and ban him with every new account he makes.

Re:Why not just say ... (2, Funny)

COMON$ (806135) | about 6 years ago | (#24328789)

Ya you see that bear over there, poke it with that stick and it will go away.

How about that beehive, kick it, them bees wont get ya.

All in all, I think it is fun to toy with the anger mongers...fun for me, AND I get to let off my own steam ;)

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328679)

One of my favourite sayings:

"Never mud wrestle with a pig. You get all dirty and the pig likes it."

We may be the ones being played (5, Insightful)

Magic5Ball (188725) | about 6 years ago | (#24328815)

Clicking through the forums, there appear to be a total of 31 posts in the entirety of the forums (unless registered can see more forums or some such).

It appears that the subject of the thread that is linked to in the story is an unstructured series of bug reports and technical commentary about cases not considered by the software, and suggestions for improvement. The instances where the alleged bully deviates from the topic at hand, the comments regard the forum software in use, and after the first response, the alleged bully withdraws his complaint to return to a discussion about the technical merits of the software.

As a scientist (but not an aviation engineer), the comments, questions, and responses between the allegedly bully and the software author appear to be about technical aspects of the software, and there appears to be a mutual understanding and agreement about issues that got fixed.

The discussion appears to be professional, with the occasional attempt at absurd humour thrown in.

Am I missing something here? Is this story an attempt to generate hits for an otherwise non-notable website for a niche app?

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328759)

The important thing is to watch for and learn when you are in a pointless exchange.

Some arguments typically Religion(in the broad vi vs emacs, Jehovah vs FSM) and Politics are DOA. Do not respond even once.

Most other topics; be politish, correct them, ask how things could be improved, etc. Do this exactly once. If they are still an asshat after that, ignore them completely. Don't antagonize/retaliate/ban them etc. Give them absolutely 0% of your time and thought.

There are billions of people, and the internet lets you interact with many millions of them. There is ZERO reason to waste any time on losers.

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328793)

There are people out that enjoy argu...debating. I have a friend that will try to do exactly this and when his point is proven wrong he'll change topics or even try to mix up the sides of the arguments and reposition himself in the right.

One way to end the debate is to concede the point as suggested and get on with it. My problem with that is that conceding makes him feel good and he gets his kicks and continues to win more pointless debates.

Another method I find much more useful as a future deterrent to repeat offenses is, when with other company, that we all side against him. After this happens a few times with the same set of people he'll give up with that set of people.

If he's not there to give constructive criticism then he's there for something else, deprive him of that and he'll go away and seek it elsewhere.

Re:Stop Playing Their Game (5, Interesting)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 6 years ago | (#24328835)

If you're the moderator, just shadowban their account.

They can post, but nobody sees their posts except for the bully.

Eventually they leave, since they think that everyone is ignoring them.

Elimination (1)

rodney dill (631059) | about 6 years ago | (#24328439)

Ban his IP

Re:Elimination (5, Funny)

megaditto (982598) | about 6 years ago | (#24328505)

Redirect his browser to an illegal porn site (with an IP-specific refresh tag), then call the FBI. BAM!

Create a "Trollcage" (4, Interesting)

MisterBlueSky (1213526) | about 6 years ago | (#24328599)

Nah, he will probably come back using proxy's.

Instead use some scripting to make his posts invisible to everybody, but himself (only someone visiting from his IP gets to see his posts/comments). He will think he is successfully posting his trolls, but nobody else sees them.

Re:Create a "Trollcage" (2, Insightful)

entrylevel (559061) | about 6 years ago | (#24328669)

No mod points for me, so I just wanted to say: this is a great idea.

This shouldn't be the only thing in your bag of tricks, but it should be your very first attempt. Hold off on trying anything until after (if) the bully is clever enough to figure it out.

If your forum software doesn't support this natively (I think most don't) and you cannot implement it yourself, any competent PHP developer should be able to implement it for you for just an hour of billable time.

Re:Create a "Trollcage" (3, Informative)

Ngarrang (1023425) | about 6 years ago | (#24328703)

So, you basically add him to everyone's ignore list. That is a rather neat solution.

Re:Create a "Trollcage" (1)

creyes123 (669764) | about 6 years ago | (#24328799)

Nah, he will probably come back using proxy's. Instead use some scripting to make his posts invisible to everybody, but himself (only someone visiting from his IP gets to see his posts/comments). He will think he is successfully posting his trolls, but nobody else sees them.

I like this idea! I need to figure out how to do it using phpBB.

Re:Create a "Trollcage" (1)

domatic (1128127) | about 6 years ago | (#24328831)

That isn't hard to detect and some sites are notorious for doing this to non-groupthink posters rather than true trolls. All one needs to do is use another machine with a different IP and a new nym to catch this. The end result is no different than banning the troll and having the troll come back with a new nym.

Nothing is perfect (2, Informative)

Bananatree3 (872975) | about 6 years ago | (#24328865)

This "trollcage" may be enough to stop most dicks. The cleaver ones can find ways around it.

However, dicks stand out in a crowd, and it's obvious when a repeat offender comes back. Simply rinse and repeat. Few clicks, done.

Re:Elimination (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | about 6 years ago | (#24328727)

Ban his IP

This is a pretty bad way to handle the problem, as IPs are *far* from unique these days.

Verify user registration via email, and ban the user. Or mod the user down if you have the ability. Yes, people can use throwaway email addresses, but there's only so much you can do.

If you can do a silent banning, where they can log in and post messages that noone else can read, then they think they're being a nuisance, but noone else will ever be bothered by them. They might also be less likely to use a throwaway email address to create another account because they think they're causing mayhem.

Don't feed the troll (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 6 years ago | (#24328441)

If they're just out to troll then ban them and be done with it.

Shut your mouth you stupid idiot (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328445)

And don't go whining to Slashdot you baby!

Re:Shut your mouth you stupid idiot (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328541)

fuck you, why dont you just kill yourself geek!

kthxbye stfu! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328461)

generally teh best responses!

Relax (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328469)

Your best bet is to just relax. Remember, when you argue with an idiot on the internet, two idiots are arguing.

Re:Relax (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328575)

No, arguing on the internet is like winning the Special Olympics. Even though you win you are still retarded. [reallybored.net] I know, it's old......

wtf (0, Flamebait)

jswigart (1004637) | about 6 years ago | (#24328473)

ban, done. you really needed to ask slashdot about this nonsense?

Re:wtf (2, Insightful)

negRo_slim (636783) | about 6 years ago | (#24328497)

ban, done. you really needed to ask slashdot about this nonsense?

Better yet, does Slashdot need to post this nonsense?

John Gabriel's Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory (5, Funny)

skrolle2 (844387) | about 6 years ago | (#24328483)

http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19/ [penny-arcade.com]

Yes, some people are mean on the internet, that's what IP-bans are for. No, you can't talk them into being nice, you slap an IP-ban on them, delete their posts, and forget about them.

Re:John Gabriel's Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328587)

Shut up, shitcock!

(Attention moderators: it's a joke. I've seen several people get modded down when the mods didn't get it.)

Re:John Gabriel's Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory (1)

aztektum (170569) | about 6 years ago | (#24328743)

This is not at all "PC" but this line from back in the day has stuck w/ me like the GGIFT

"Arguing on the Internet is like running in the Special Olympics. Even if you win YOU'RE STILL FUCKING RETARDED!"

Internet (5, Insightful)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 6 years ago | (#24328495)

Winning an argument on the Internet is really hard, because people can trump you with their dickhead status or their real status. If you're trying to form a logical argument, they can make something that sounds cool and is easier to register, and people will accept it. Sometimes they just claim the argument is over, after they make a (flawed) point, leaving you unable to counter their blatant insulting of your intelligence (which usually paints you as wrong even if you're arguing over whether or not 2+2 = 7).

It's stupid.

Re:Internet (5, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 6 years ago | (#24328573)

Winning an argument on the Internet is really hard, because people can trump you with their dickhead status or their real status.

Or as Wikipedia has shown, by their persistence.

Re:Internet (1)

rodney dill (631059) | about 6 years ago | (#24328615)

Well if its your blog and you have the ability to edit their comments, then it become pretty hard for them to win.

Re:Internet (5, Insightful)

unlametheweak (1102159) | about 6 years ago | (#24328689)

Winning an argument on the Internet is really hard...

Nope, winning an argument on the Internet is easy. Convincing your opponent that you've won is often impossible.

Re:Internet (2, Informative)

megaditto (982598) | about 6 years ago | (#24328801)

It's possible. Just watch how Eric Cartman did it:

http://www.southparkstudios.com/episodes/103946 [southparkstudios.com]

(If the link doesn't work select Season 5 Ep. 4. It's all legal)

bully? (5, Funny)

nomadic (141991) | about 6 years ago | (#24328499)

I don't know, I've had to deal with people like that but never anyone that violent or aggressive...I mean criticizing a calculator? Why hasn't someone locked him up already?

Killfile (2, Informative)

Pig Hogger (10379) | about 6 years ago | (#24328501)

Killfile him. Ban him. Ban his IP. There's many options available for that. Use them.

Anonymous Coward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328503)

"Bullies"? Just IP ban him, you idiot.

Re:Anonymous Coward (1)

Cathoderoytube (1088737) | about 6 years ago | (#24328667)

Yeah that doesn't work, we just use Tor.

Re:Anonymous Coward (1)

Atlantis-Rising (857278) | about 6 years ago | (#24328723)

Then you ban all Tor exit nodes; I know quite a few places that ban all Tor exit nodes and ban as many proxies as they can get their hands on.

Anonymity is too annoying to allow, in general.

What? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328507)

I didn't read every word of the post, it just seemed like the guy was expecting absolute accuracy from something that was never intended to be that way. I didn't at all take it as an 'internet bully'.

Did he threaten to come to your house and beat you up if you didn't fix it? Maybe that was in the part I skimmed over.

Deal with it judiciously, but carefully (4, Insightful)

Adreno (1320303) | about 6 years ago | (#24328515)

Banning their IP or username will probably be seen as an act of aggression, and if they are really intent on trolling your forums, they will find a means to do it. Really, the best way to deal with a person like this is to just ignore them... they won't find any entertainment if there's no reciprocation. Move their post off into a dusty corner of the forums if you can (make it the last to show up in searches, for example) and forget about it. There's one in every crowd =(

TREX them (5, Insightful)

Thagg (9904) | about 6 years ago | (#24328529)

What you do is you take their comments, and edit them, to make them say exactly the opposite of what they are saying. So, if they say

Rob Sucks!

You can edit it to say

Rob did a great job.

Or something like that. It's really frustrating for trolls to find that their comments become benign.

Or, just ignore them. That works too!

Finally, what some people do is a little tricky. You ban their IPs, so that nobody *but them* can see their post. They think they are posting some vicious flames, and it shows up when they view the site, but nobody else (not even you, if you want) see it.

Re:TREX them (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328657)

thats quite clever, may I suggest that it's too obvious however. The awesome version would be to slowly reduce the % of users that can see his posts to 0 thereby making him think that no one likes him. Nothing more crushing to the troll than attention starvation.

Hide his comments (3, Interesting)

mongus (131392) | about 6 years ago | (#24328531)

I'd try to set up the forum so he is the only one who can see his posts so he thinks his messages are getting through and everybody else is ignoring him.

I believe the following covers it: (5, Funny)

The Ancients (626689) | about 6 years ago | (#24328537)

...nicely [mothership.co.nz] (~50KB jpg).

I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.

--George Bernard Shaw

Re:I believe the following covers it: (1)

Cheesebisquit (1324407) | about 6 years ago | (#24328869)

Funny, but too harsh.

What did we do on AOL in the 90's (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328549)

There were these things called "punt strings". Basically, America Online's instant messaging client did not properly parse HTML. With a properly crafted chain of h1's, br's, etc... You could cause a DOS attack with a simple message.

Or, if you were a real bastard, you could "TOS" someone, i.e. send a properly crafted complaint mail to the Terms of Service general with a complaint about the person. Added points for pasting a fake IM log. You could get their parents banned from their ISP. Good times.

Whine on Slashdot! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328551)

Pointing out that you can't just ban some twat and be done with it, but will give him entire Slashdot articles worth of attention is the best way.

After this makes him a professional troll worthy of charging consulting rates*, he'll join the GNAA and leave you alone once he heads to the big leagues.

* I was going to say "consulting rates for douchebaggery" but that's entirely redundant, as anyone who has met Highly Paid Consultants knows.

ban'em (5, Insightful)

maetenloch (181291) | about 6 years ago | (#24328555)

I've been on bulletin boards, mailing list since the 80's and usenet since the 90's, and I've found that the best strategy is to give them a private warning and then ban them if they keep up the bad behavior. Anything else just prolongs the inevitable, wastes your time, and drives away contributing posters.

Re:ban'em (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328721)

The first step however... would be to establish a Terms of Use for the forum. Lay down some basic things that the users can or cannot do. Then if someone becomes a pest by voliating the terms of use, you can safely send them a nice little warning, then ban them.

Hrm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328557)

How would you handle schoolyard bullies? You're bound to run into people who are just flat-out trolls. Since you appear to be in a position of authority, make use of it. Perhaps penalize people who are insulting you or your efforts in a manner that is not constructive criticism. I wouldn't suggest going all ban happy on everyone who says stuff that makes you or your efforts look bad. Really, its about trying to tell the trolls from the people who are simply trying to point out weaknesses or faults that may need improvement. Exercise your judgment carefully, and remember power corrupts.

Quit whining (5, Insightful)

HairyCanary (688865) | about 6 years ago | (#24328561)

That thread is really tame. You have an incredibly tiny forum with very few threads, and the first critical comments in a short 12-post thread send you running to Slashdot for help? Wow. Go over and read some forums with a lot more posts and grow a thicker skin. Seriously.

Re:Quit whining (5, Informative)

Just Some Guy (3352) | about 6 years ago | (#24328683)

No kidding! I actually RTFA for a rare change, and the "bully" in that thread actually seemed like he wanted to help improve the product.

The "criticism" included hateful words along the lines of "you might want to lower the warning threshold for propeller speed because plastic propellers often can't tolerate those forces". Again, bullying? No! That's called a bug report.

If you're reading this, creyes123, you might really want to consider laying off the caffeine. Not everyone is out to get you.

Crap. Did I just bully?

Re:Quit whining (5, Informative)

Ignis Flatus (689403) | about 6 years ago | (#24328701)

yes! mod parent up. he should thank them for their input and move on. maybe even make some changes to his calculator once he calms down and goes off the defensive. if you're wasting time arguing with someone, it's your own fault.

'tis slashdotted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328565)

someone post the articles please

Suggestions (5, Informative)

jd (1658) | about 6 years ago | (#24328567)

  1. Your first response was probably correct
  2. Your second response should have been to tell the person to move the discussion to e-mail
  3. If the bully persisted in the public forum(s) and not taken it to e-mail, your third response should have been to ban his IP address AND username
  4. If the bully returns, again ban his new IP and username, then e-mail the administrator account for his service to complain about malicious misconduct
  5. There's not much you can do after that, except maybe enabling moderation for all new users (until he stops trying to be a new user)

down (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328569)

That was a bad idea posting the url to your site. It is already down from being slashdot'd.

Re:down (4, Funny)

The Ancients (626689) | about 6 years ago | (#24328641)

Hence troll problem fixed!

A bit of a weird way to go about it, but each to their own...

Online forum for a 4x4 trucks community (1)

bubulubugoth (896803) | about 6 years ago | (#24328579)

Here is my advise..

Delete them.

The community I help to run, is packed of lots of wealthy people, alpha males type... and everybody thinks that is right, and many have the money to purchase the true...

Just erase them.

Simple as that.

Oh boy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328583)

Model airplanes! I'm so there! Prepare to be Slashdotted, flyboy!

Post problem onto slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328597)

use a shared server and watch as your site is blown off the internetz. problem solved.

You're the one in charge (2, Insightful)

tcgroat (666085) | about 6 years ago | (#24328601)

It's like a usenet flame-war, or a telemarketer. If you continue to respond, it only encourages them to continue the exchange.

Give them one polite response, maybe two if you're feeling generous. After that, ignore their posts. Deny them the satisfaction of harassing you. If their posts continue or worsen, expel them from the forum. It's your site, and you set and enforce the acceptable use policy for your forum. If you don't have an AUP posted for your site (I can't tell; you just slashdotted your own site!) then the first step is obvious.

Modified 3 strikes (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328603)

The problem with a 3 strikes rule, is that it does not differentiate between 3 strikes in 2 days and 3 strikes in 50 years.

Take a guess as to how often you can allow someone to lose it. I would guess once a year is probably a place to start. So, we might then say that assigning a "half-life" to the incident of 6 months would be fair. Any time an incident happens, we start keeping track of this exponentially decaying strike. If we had 1 strike at day 0, one at 6 months, and one at 1 year; the first strike has decayed to 1/4 and the second to 1/2. So the "score" at the time of the third strike is 1.75. Another strike at 1.5 years would see the total: 0.125+0.25+0.5+1. At this rate, it would take a long time to attain a score of 3. If this works with your group, keep it. If people are getting out of line too much, obviously the half life is too short.

RE: "Could I have handled this better?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328613)

"Could I have handled this better?"

If you take a moment to consider that by linking your site in the question here has caused it to breal its bandwidth/cpu quota; Yes you could have!

On the other hand, there's no such thing as bad press; so 'they' say!

My personal perspective ? To quote some wise person: "On the Internet, opinions are like Assholes. Everyones got one and they all stink."

In other words, you will never please all of the people all of the time, but perhaps you can derive some satisfaction in considering that your site has made enough of an impact for this person to actually care enough to be so vociferous ...

Handle it better by... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328617)

You could have handled it better by not being a pussy and whining to Slashdot about what to do!!! Now fix the damned stall function it's broken all to hell!

Um, oh, sorry, wrong site.

The above is intended as humor and not as actual bullying. Carry on.

This is perfect (1)

gzipped_tar (1151931) | about 6 years ago | (#24328621)

1) Running a free website. Being bullied by trolls.

2) Posting to AskSlashdot for solution.

3) ???

4) Profit!

The "Male Enhancement" answer (0, Flamebait)

ChemGeek4501 (1044544) | about 6 years ago | (#24328627)

"What did I do to deserve this? Could I have handled this better?"


Grow a pair and ban his IP address. -Chemgeek

don't ever try irc (0, Troll)

toby (759) | about 6 years ago | (#24328629)

Every few months I have a nasty enough experience on irc to send me elsewhere for amusement for a while.

A couple of weeks ago I bumped into a very unpleasant individual on #erlang. Only a few days afterwards the generally abrasive op-clique on #mysql made one too many unnecessarily-rude remarks in my direction, and I decided to get my kicks elsewhere for a while. It's the channel's loss, as I enjoyed helping people there - often while nobody else was around to help.

Generally the sociopaths on irc (or anywhere, really) are Americans. There's some kind of fundamental social training y'all are not getting down there. Until you learn to socialise in a healthy way - I'll avoid you as necessary. HAND.

As Al Pacino would've done... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328639)

Have the said bully "Meet my little friend" (see Scar Face)

"My Sandbox" (1)

beadfulthings (975812) | about 6 years ago | (#24328643)

You've been more than patient with him as he's vented his spleen. You've given him a hearing. He's become abusive. He's a troll, so twit him. It's your site.

follow view askew's lead (2, Informative)

Rytr23 (704409) | about 6 years ago | (#24328647)

According to Kevin Smith, they had problem with online D-bags so they atarted charging like 99c or some pittance to get a membership + post and it seemed to take care of the problem.. Apparently Jerkoffs/trolls are not only fuckwads..but they are lazy and/or cheap fuckwads to boot.. Whether or not your site has enough traffic to merit that course of action is another story entirely..

Or just ban the douche. Its your call Lynn Doyle

What's a fourm without mods? (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 6 years ago | (#24328663)

If there are people you like, grant them mod privledges and let them delete the goofball's posts. If there aren't, and you don't have time to control the forum yourself, then your community isn't viable.

Maybe he is just _plane_ stupid! (1)

gd23ka (324741) | about 6 years ago | (#24328685)

A little known fact, there actually _is_ an organization of paid and salaried environ-mentalists determined to
inconvenience the aviation industry wherever they can: http://planestupid.com/ [planestupid.com]

Re:Maybe he is just _plane_ stupid! (1)

grub (11606) | about 6 years ago | (#24328781)

Holy moly! I had no idea such a group existed. Thanks for the eye-opening.

I LOVE AIRPLANES!!!!!!!!11 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328693)

i like airplanes, they are pretty like sunshine sparkling on a dewdrop

Here's one to try (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328699)

1) Go on No Mutants Allowed forums
2) Say why Fallout 3 looks enjoyable to you
3) Enjoy the frothing nerd rage

Top non-admin poster, at five posts. (1)

LostCluster (625375) | about 6 years ago | (#24328717)

The user the site owner is complaining about is the top non-admin poster... with only five posts.

Sorry. When you open up a fourm, you have to have a thicker skin than wanting to get rid of poster who comes up critical. Next thing you know, we'll be seeing a Your Rights Online post from the user you want to ban.

What did I do to deserve this? (1)

actionbastard (1206160) | about 6 years ago | (#24328731)

You setup a website with forums for user comments. Haven't you learned anything from reading /.?

Not sure he's a "bully" (1)

grub (11606) | about 6 years ago | (#24328741)


I read the thread and it sounds to me like the fellow is just wanting highly accurate results from your software.

In any event I'd suggest, with all due respect, that this may just be a case of being pissed off at the guy. He's written about what he perceives as flaws in the software you wrote; he's calling your baby ugly.

Forum Rules (1)

rossz (67331) | about 6 years ago | (#24328757)

When I ran a forum I had a few simple rules.

If you are an asshole, you will get banned.
I define who is an asshole.
It varies depending on my mood.
Yes, I am an asshole.
My server, my rules.

Re:Forum Rules (3, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | about 6 years ago | (#24328819)

If you are an asshole, you will get banned.
[...]
Yes, I am an asshole.

So.... how long did it take before you banned yourself?

Old saying here on Slashdot... (3, Insightful)

tekiegreg (674773) | about 6 years ago | (#24328767)

Don't feed the trolls, it only encourages them. Don't know who to give credit for that originally but it always holds true. Don't look at them or even acknowledge their presence, if they find out their life draining speech is worthless they move on. If anyone succeeds at doing this, let me know...

Unforgiven (1)

Todd Fisher (680265) | about 6 years ago | (#24328769)

What did I do to deserve this?

Deserve's got nothing to do with it.

Where's the problem? (5, Insightful)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | about 6 years ago | (#24328777)

Never attribute to malice what can be explained by stupidity. Don't assign to stupidity what might be due to ignorance. The dude's questions don't seem unreasonable, and you keep posting encouraging comments like "this is good stuff" and "these really give me great ideas" so of course he's going to continue providing feedback. He's probably thinking he's doing you a great service and he's the best forum poster in the whole world.

He's more coherent than 90% of the clients I've ever dealt with, and was willing to admit where he was wrong in some points. From my outlook, this man is a model poster and what you should really be encouraging in your community rather than freezing like a deer in headlights. Communities absolutely thrive on the [conceived] ability to alter the outcome of the product that has brought them together. Machiavelli wrote a book on just this type of thing.

If you need him to temper down his comments, simply remind him that you're a small shop and appreciate his patience as much as his input. Tell him that you don't check the board as often as you check your emails, and you would appreciate it if he were to continue this thread via email with you -- like telling someone to bypass your secretary with a direct line, it can be very flattering.

If that's the worse... (1)

s0litaire (1205168) | about 6 years ago | (#24328795)

Then consider yourself lucky! Most forums i've been on end up in the "Troll" bad mouthing everyone and anyone's parentage within 100 miles of the forum hosts location! Just remember Trolls get off on creating discord (one hand typers!!). Answer their questions within the realms of possibility then ban their ASS when they start bad mouthing people. Simple.. :D Also move their posts in a private forum for a select few to laugh at :D:D

Advice (1)

CaptainTux (658655) | about 6 years ago | (#24328803)

My personal advice is to just sit by and allow him to do it. Reply to one of his post (probably his most recent) and explain your side of the story but let him know you're not going to waste time with his endless tirade of complaints. Let him know that, if he wants help, email your support team privately and you'll try to resolve his problem but you're done with him publicly.

By allowing him to continue to post unhindered, your other visitors will see through his crap and it won't have any power and, eventually, when he realizes he isn't getting your ire up like he wants, he's going to either go away or bring up a legitimate concern.

You're also going to demonstrate to your visitors that you're open to criticism and don't try to stifle your critics. It's a win-win situation.

Good luck!

It's YOUR site - nuke him. (2, Insightful)

rueger (210566) | about 6 years ago | (#24328817)

Despite some people's half-baked concepts of "Freedom of Speech" you are not obliged to let anyone post anything that you don't like.

It's your site, not his. If he feels moved to flame your work he can go start his own site and do it there.

Delete him, delete his posts, and if he comes back delete him again. He'll give up fast enough.

IronBits (1)

IronBits (859023) | about 6 years ago | (#24328825)

It's really simple, ignore the poster. Others will/do see it for what it is. Some folks have made it their personal goal to ensure that everyone is more unhappy then themselves. If it's irrelevant then ignore it.

the best defence is offence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24328833)

Ban his IP. Or the entire subnet belonging to his ISP. Or the whole country of his. Heck, you can ban everybody altogether! Now that would be one hell of a preemptive strike.

Welll... (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | about 6 years ago | (#24328841)

I do realize dude is a total fuckwad, but having been in software development for a lot of years, I find that 9 out of 10 times I feel like blowing someone off for being that way or banning them, I'm better off actually listening to what they are saying, because if one person thinks a thing, many more do, too.

Ideally, software should not need documentation.  So, while your criticism of his criticism is perfectly valid, you don't seem willing to accept the possibility that your application could use some user interface improvement.

Just saying.

Check out my game.  Tell me what you really think--plenty of people have, and in the end even the assholes I value for their honest criticism, since they are not my friends or family and they feel VERY free to say what they really think.

Poisonous People (1)

chris_sawtell (10326) | about 6 years ago | (#24328847)

What did I do to deserve this? Could I have handled this better?

  1. Nothing whatsoever. The world has always had a dose of 'Poisonous People'. For reasons of 'Human Rights' they are much more visable these days. One of them has just happened to bumble into your forum.
  2. Yes. It's so simple. You just don't feed them, ever.

    If your forum users are getting annoyed, then a single big notice "Please don't feed the troll." usually works wonders.
    ( The antique unix 'banner' utility program is useful to generate the notice. )

See this 55 minute Google Talk [google.nl] on how to survive these horrible individuals. Although this video is about PPs in a free software setting, the principles are the same for your forum.

Troll ignore (1)

mark72005 (1233572) | about 6 years ago | (#24328873)

Many forums have the ability for a moderator to put someone on universal ignore.

This is advantageous to a traditional banning because the troll does not immediately know they need to re-register under a different username.

You'll never be able to get people to ignore a troll any other way.
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