troll : Java Glossary


A post on an Internet Newsgroup containing a deliberately false statement trashing some sacred cow cherished by members of the majority of members of the Newsgroup. A brat makes such a post simply to get a rise out of people. A paid propagandist may make it to spread FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt) about the product trashed. The Usenet group alt.folklore.urban gives two definitions:
  1. To utter a posting on Usenet designed to attract predictable responses or flames; or, the post itself. Derives from the phrase trolling for newbies which in turn comes from mainstream trolling, a style of fishing in which one trails bait through a likely spot hoping for a bite. The well-constructed troll is a post that induces lots of newbies and flamers to make themselves look even more clueless than they already do, while subtly conveying to the more savvy and experienced that it is in fact a deliberate troll. If you don’t fall for the joke, you get to be in on it.
  2. An individual who chronically trolls in sense 1; regularly posts specious arguments, flames or personal attacks to a newsgroup, discussion list, or in email for no other purpose than to annoy someone or disrupt a discussion. Trolls are recognizable by the fact that the have no real interest in learning about the topic at hand — they simply want to utter flame bait. Like the ugly creatures they are named after, they exhibit no redeeming characteristics and as such, they are recognized as a lower form of life on the net, as in, Oh, ignore him, he’s just a troll.

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