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Advogato post for 2000-03-02 02:58:53

Ok, so I got the answer to my question of what drives a slashdot troll. The answer, it seems, is ego, immaturity and a strange thirst of revenge for imagined damage.

Or at least, that's what it seems to me, from read­ing the thread at, I'm sure the trolls them­selves, and that new stranger fau­na, the troll fan, will dis­agree com­plete­ly, and prob­a­bly I am com­plete­ly wrong[1].

No­ticed some­thing else: the ten­den­cy to re­cip­ro­cal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion in ad­voga­to. Now I am start­ing to be­lieve that some of the peo­ple who cer­ti­fied me on­ly did that ex­pect­ing me to cer­ti­fy them in re­spon­se[2]

On the KRN side of life, it is cur­rent­ly a de­cent ba­sic news­read­er again, al­though it is much less fea­ture­ful than 0.6.11, but, boy is it smooth! :-)

Af­ter read­ing the re­spons­es to the ad­voga­to sto­ry on the /. im­plo­sion, I see Raph replied to my preach­ing against anony­mous post­ing. Well, I am against it not as a prin­ci­ple, but as an aesteth­ic judge­men­t.

Posts made by a rec­og­niz­able en­ti­ty shape my per­cep­tion of that en­ti­ty. Such en­ti­ty can ac­quire over­time fea­tures I ap­pre­ci­ate, like in­tegri­ty, hon­our, hu­mour, wit, knowl­edge, em­pa­thy.

A anony­mous post is an end in it­self, it's a dead al­ley. It on­ly con­trib­utes to the con­text of the thread, and then van­ish­es.

Anony­mous posts are graf­fi­ti, named posts are cor­re­spon­dence.

If you take the let­ters by Sartre to Si­mone, sep­a­rate them, put each in a piece of pa­per and re­move the names, you have a lot of rather nice writ­ing.

Mix them with an­oth­er 1000 let­ters by oth­er­s, in the same con­di­tion, and you have a lot of noise, with semi-in­ter­est­ing nuggets ev­ery now and then.

Take the Sartre let­ter­s, put them in a book, and you have what I am read­ing now, and trust me, it's not the same.

The whole is rarely the sum of its part­s.


[1] I don't be­lieve I have any ca­pa­bil­i­ty to un­der­stand oth­er peo­ple's mo­ti­va­tion­s, at best I can re­act to their ac­tion­s. I re­act­ed strong­ly to these par­tic­u­lar ac­tion­s.

[2] By def­i­ni­tion, those who cer­ti­fied me in that vein are cer­ti­fy­ing me wrong since they are on­ly sup­posed to cer­ti­fy me if they know me, and any­one who knows me will say I will not grant cer­ti­fi­ca­tions as a re­ward. I sup­pose I will be Ap­pren­tice to­mor­row[3] ;-)

[3] Hey, re­verse psy­chol­o­gy worked on /. ;-)

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