Know your CiF trolls 3

The Pettifogger

The Pettifogger

It’s worthwhile stating that, as in all cases of trolling, it is the intent that decides if a post is trolling or not. When someone puts up a passionate defence of a view you don’t share, it’s not trolling unless the cubelet’s intention for making the passionate defence is to piss you off.

As such, if the opinion espoused is diametrically opposite to yours, it can be hard to distinguish a ferverent believer from a cold hearted time waster.  And this is the core of the pettifogger M.O. – it relies on the moral camoflage of being allowed to have a different opinion to those around it, but it has absolutely no  intention of agreeing, at all, ever, over its dead body.

Its intent is that of all trolls – to grab screen real-estate and try to make it into its personal fiefdom where any and all attempts at discussion are to be shut down. The methods used will be a mixture of

moral blackmail ( “As a member of such-and-such  a minority, I resent that!”)

veiled insults (“I thought you were more clued up on that, but you clearly aren’t”)

condescension (“I’m not explaining it to intellectual inferiors”)

moral grandstanding (“does nobody think of the children!”)

cherry picking or making up facts to support its argument (“eleventy billion percent of people standing outside Tescos yesterday agree”)

strawman fallacies (“you said you like dogs, ugly women get called dogs, therefor you are insulting women and a misogynist to boot”)

weasel wording (” everyone knows”, “a friend told me”, “it’s almost certainly so”)

ad hominems (“you socialist!”)

bombastic exaggeration (“That is the single worst, gi- humongously crap-tastically terminally ill-ly conceived idea I”ve ever heard.”)

intellectual dishonesty (“I never said the sky is blue, I said it was blue coloured.”)

In fact, any old crap as long as the troll gets to see most of the screen covered by its name, or at second best, more of the screen that anyone else’s.

Want to read the rest of this series?

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