(not satire – it’s the UK today!)
It’s a dubious boast I know, but it would be hard to find someone more experienced than me at being abused on-line.
I’m not complaining – I don’t just criticise people on this blog – I take the p*ss out of them which is of course much worse. So I shouldn’t be surprised if sometimes one of my targets or their supporters decides to bite me back.
During the short time I’ve been writing this blog I’ve been criticised, attacked, insulted, abused, threatened with libel, violence and even death.
However, in just the past few days I’ve noticed a real sea-change in the type of trolling I’ve been getting.
While I still get attacked, the threats of violence and bad language have completely – I mean completely – disappeared. My critics – I can’t call them trolls any more – are having to resort to finding real reasons for criticising me instead of just resorting to the usual mindless abuse.
This is great. I don’t mind being criticised – I like it even. I just don’t much like being abused or threatened with death and violence.
I put this change down to the recent publicity about the revolting trolling of high-profile women like Stella Creasy and Caroline Criado-Perez and the arrests of some of the perpetrators.
So a big well done to those and other women for achieving what’s starting to look like a real victory against trolling – a victory which benefits everyone, men, women, the famous and the unknown alike.
However, there are trolls out there who are busily hurling hurtful untruths and lies at anyone they don’t like which have resulted in suicides and wrecked lives and they are still yet to be brought to heel.
If I were to insult the dead victims of a terrible tragedy like Hillsborough on Twitter or Facebook or my blog – I would quite rightly receive a visit from the police – and possibly jail time.
Yet we still have a situation where tabloid journalists can do and say what they want about anyone they want in the national newspapers and still think they can get away with it.
It’s not Twitter users, Facebook users and bloggers who are the main problem when it comes to trolling.
It’s tabloid hacks on newspapers like the Express, the Sun and the Mail.
We regularly allow journalists in the pay of a handful of rich oligarchs to personally attack and abuse – to troll – to their heart’s content the sick, the disabled, the poor, the helpless, the unemployed and the innocent and they know there will be absolutely zero consequences for their actions.
It’s time to bring the Tabloid Trolls to heel.
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