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View Diary: An Open Letter to The Occupy Wall Street Movement: You Were Right All Along (160 comments)

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  •  Bob the fact is that there is a handful of (1+ / 0-)
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    persistent users trolling my diaries, sometimes postings dozens of highly insulting and disruptive messages in diary after diary after diary. Bob, people aren't blind nor stupid. They can see for themselves.

    •  Hi Ray! (3+ / 0-)
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      serendipityisabitch, poco, Lying eyes

      Agreed, people aren't blind nor stupid, and they can see for themselves. What some people see in your diaries is a persistent and aggressive tendency on your part of mischaracterizing commenters in your diaries as trolls.

      Bob's comment below links to your exchange with JosephK74, which is a textbook illustration of that behavior. I've watched you play the same game with commenters hundreds of times - it's your default response to those who disagree with you.

      For someone coming in blank slate to one of your diaries, it would be possible to interpret some of the dissenting commenters as "insulting and disruptive", but for anyone who follows a few of your diary exchanges to the end, it's clear that you're the one creating this narrative of persistent trolling, by consistently mischaracterizing commenters in your diaries as trolls.

      •  Let's just call it dickish behavour (2+ / 0-)
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        erratic, Ray Pensador

        Everyone seems to have their own definitions of trolls, depending on what side you are on.

        But we all know if posters are BAD, no matter what side they are taking.

        And there's no shortage in Ray's diaries, or other diaries for that matter, that enjoy BAD, engaging in that dickish behavor.

        I do not agree with your comment......

        For someone coming in blank slate to one of your diaries, it would be possible to interpret some of the dissenting commenters as "insulting and disruptive", but for anyone who follows a few of your diary exchanges to the end, it's clear that you're the one creating this narrative of persistent trolling, by consistently mischaracterizing commenters in your diaries as trolls.

        For our fallen solders who come home from Afghanistan to Dover AF mortuary, "God bless the cause of "The Good War" for which they died" - As if any war can be called Good in its 13th year, America's longest war.

        by allenjo on Sat Jan 04, 2014 at 10:58:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agreed, there's definitely dickish behavior (0+ / 0-)

          which I don't consider constructive. I'm curious about your perspective on Ray's exchange with JosephK74, which Bob links to in a comment below.

          Or from Ray's previous diary, where posts a comment about OWS, that Ray characterizes as "It seems to be a provocative comment meant to provoke...".

          Ray could address or ignore DBAD behavior in his diaries. Instead, he consistently frames it as "persistent trolls...posting dozens of disruptive messages in my diaries...It is relentless and very disciplined".

        •  Notice the almost desperate attempts at maligning (0+ / 0-)

          by posting unrelated links that are then mischaracterized. The same tiny group of users.

          •  Hi Ray! (3+ / 0-)

            Thanks for proving my point, I guess. Although I don't see why my link to hangingchad's comment thread in your diary, or Bob's to Josephk74's is unrelated.

            •  Erratic, there's been a lot of focus on (1+ / 0-)
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              personalities.  I think people's opinions have been expressed at a personal level.  Since you are commenting in this thread, did you happen to read the diary?  Do you have any feedback on it?  What is your opinion about the issues I brought up?

              Perhaps you and I can have a couple of respectful exchanges on the actual topic of the diary.

              One user had a perspective but the language was coarse and vulgar, which garnered him quite a few HRs; hopefully you'll understand why I didn't engage that user.

              Let's see if we can redirect the conversation to the topic of the diary.  What do you thing?

              •  Sure thing Ray, and cheers. (1+ / 0-)
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                Ray Pensador

                And just so you know for the future, I always read diaries that I comment in. I did appreciate the link to the article about Gene Sharp in your diary - I hadn't heard of him before, and enjoyed learning about him.

                The last paragraph jumped out at me, in reference to your diary:

                In the meantime, he is keeping a close eye on the Middle East. He was struck by the Egyptian protesters’ discipline in remaining peaceful, and especially by their lack of fear. “That is straight out of Gandhi,” Mr. Sharp said. “If people are not afraid of the dictatorship, that dictatorship is in big trouble.”
                I feel that this diary, as have many previous ones, seems to be committed to creating fear (eg, "There is a vast total-information-awareness surveillance network made up of global corporations and subservient (captured) governments engaging in the systematic infiltration and suppression of social justice activist groups"). I suspect that you'd argue that you're simply presenting the reality of the current situation, but I feel that you're building an exaggerated, extreme narrative of oppression by tying together data points. The result is a sort of Ewoks vs Empire narrative, where citizens unite to destroy the powerful oppressors.

                I'm pretty sure that you and I mostly agree on social justice issues, and the fact that powerful entities and organizations are heavily invested in maintaining their profitable status quo. I think we also agree on some end goals, eg raising taxes on the wealthy, reducing corporate influence on the political process...I believe that we both agree that these issues are best addressed by putting effective pressure on the existing political/government system.

                One area where we don't agree is on the narrative of powerful oppression. I use the same analytic filters here that I do in the real world, and I don't like being manipulated. I've followed some of the Stratfor links that you've posted, and so far I've seen college-paper level analyses of political action and speculation. It's a bit creepy, but not exactly terrifying. The same goes for the protest monitoring.

                My inclination with stuff like the Stratfor documents is to analyze them and learn how to implement stronger and more effective campaigns. In general, I feel that the best strategies are based on having a clear understanding of one's "opponents", what motivates them, what they perceive.

                So when I read about "...a vast total-information-awareness surveillance network made up of global corporations and subservient (captured) governments engaging in the systematic infiltration and suppression of social justice activist groups", and find that it's based on mostly unrelated data points, I get a bit frustrated. To break it down,

                There is a vast total-information-awareness surveillance network...
                ->I assume that you're referring to the NSA here
                ...made up of global corporations
                ->Ok, so the NSA works with private contractors like Booz Allen Hamilton
                ...and subservient (captured) governments
                ->Um wait, so I guess not the NSA, since that's a gov't agency. Since it's multiple governments, maybe you're referring to Five Eyes, but then it would still need to be a network that's running those governments
                ...engaging in the systematic infiltration and suppression of social justice activist groups
                ->and now you lost me. There's documentation in this diary of infiltration of social justice activist groups, but by local gov't agencies. FBI, DHS are likely in play as well. Targetted arrests, police actions against OWS activities, ok, that's suppression. But is it systematic? Wouldn't that mean going after all social justice activist groups, and not just specific actions? How does this tie back to the global corporations? And how strongly connected is this vast network?

                •  I'm sure you're provably aware about the letter (1+ / 0-)
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                  Senator Bernie Sanders sent to the NSA.  Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                  BURLINGTON, Vt., Jan. 3 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today asked the National Security Agency director whether the agency has monitored the phone calls, emails and Internet traffic of members of Congress and other elected officials.

                  “Has the NSA spied, or is the NSA currently spying, on members of Congress or other American elected officials?” Sanders asked in a letter to Gen. Keith Alexander, the NSA director. “Spying” would include gathering metadata on calls made from official or personal phones, content from websites visited or emails sent, or collecting any other data from a third party not made available to the general public in the regular course of business?”

                  As you correctly point out, I've written several diaries about this subject... In fact, it is something I've been following for over ten years now.

                  I've read most of the articles published by The Guardian and other publications about the NSA illegal spying revealed by Edward Snowden.

                  I've also read and reviewed a lot of leaked documents at WikiLeaks.  I've read several reports from multiple organizations about how government and corporations have basically fused the surveillance apparatus.

                  And I've read (and reported on) about how multiple corporations, PR firms, law firms, shadowy corporate spy networks (who sometimes hire active CIA, FBI, and Police officials) engage in illegal activities related to the monitoring of innocent civilians and groups.

                  There is also plenty documentation about how they deploy vast networks of trolls and sock-puppets across the social media landscape.

                  Now, I've come to my conclusions many years ago just by basic observation, and these revelations resulting from the great patriotic efforts of people like Snowden have just confirmed what I already suspected.

                  That's just myself, of course... Now there are many other respected individuals, writers, intellectuals, who have also come to the same conclusions, and argue that the reason for that is because at some level, if one pays attention with an open mind and is objective, it is pretty obvious what's happening.

                  But regardless of all that, it seems that your point of contention is that you don't agree with my conclusions; that you don't connect the dots the same way I do, and somehow you say that that frustrates you.

                  Would it be fair to say that the frustration comes from your absolute certainty that my conclusions are wrong and that you are wanting to either dismiss my conclusions out of hand, or even enforce your conclusions as the only ones that matter?

                  Now, let me be very specific as to why I say that... Let's say that you write a diary and you address all these issues but you come to a very different set of conclusions I do.

                  The first thing is that it is very likely that I will not read it because if I remember correctly I've never visited one of your diaries... But even if I were to visit for the first time and read your diary and see that you reached a set of conclusions which I find totally off base, it is even less likely that I would challenge you head on in your own diary.  In the unlikely case I do post one comment, I would take care to do so in a respectful manner.

                  But either way, the likelihood is that that won't happen because I just to visit diaries of people with whom I know I have serious disagreements, and I think it's not polite to barge in and get into a confrontational mode in somebody else's diary.

                  Now, that's just me.  I fully understand that others don't operate that way and feel that they have the right to visit any diary they want and post as many comments the feel like posting.  And I don't object to that, of course; that's the nature of a blog like this where people can comment at will.

                  But be that as it may, and this question is key, I do find it a little perplexing that some folks claim to find my conclusions extremely disquieting but they keep reading all my diaries and sometimes post dozens of messages per diary, in dairy after diary after diary.

                  And sometimes the invective can get very crass, coarse, vulgar as it happen in this very diary.

                  That's the part I don't understand...

                  Maybe you can help me understand it better... Is the purpose of the folks who assert that they vehemently disagree with my conclusions but who nevertheless keep appearing in all my diaries, to change my mind?  Is it to change the minds of others who are reading my diaries?  When the invective gets into name-calling and allusions of paranoia, narcissism, and the like, a character assassination tactic?

                  What do you think it is?  It seems you are quite perceptive about these things...

                  Now, addressing the elephant in the room, when it comes to trolls, sockpuppets and bad-faith actors, what I usually focus on is on behavior.

                  You are familiar with the little box I put at the end of my diaries where I put a link to the 15 Rules of Web Disruption.

                  I argue that those web disruption tactics are pretty easy to spot and then I suggest to readers that if they believe a user is engaging in web disruption tactics that maybe they should not engage so they can instead focus on meaningful discussion of the issue at hand.

                  Is that the part that some user find objectionable?  What do you think?

                  Actually, what do you think about the content of that link in general?

                  Do you think is is impossible to tell troll from not troll?  That there are no tell-tale signs, behavior that may lead a reasonable person to conclude that someone is acting like a troll?

                  Anyways, I'm working on my next diary which I will publish later tonight.  You are welcome to participate and I'll be sure to answer your inquiries which I assume you'll be presenting in good faith.

                  •  Hi Ray! (0+ / 0-)

                    I thought you wanted to address the topic of the diary. Are we focussing back on personalities now?

                    On the topic of identifying trolls, did you notice hangingchad's follow-up comments to his post in your previous diary, which you described as "It seems to be a provocative comment meant to provoke..."?

                    You recced RocketJSquirrel, who mocked him. These were his responses:

                    Ask MinistryOfTruth who got him his laptop
                    I helped them as much as I could as I could not be in the street with my health issues.

                    I have major vision issues
                    and cannot see the sidewalk etc.. I have been in my apartment alone with two cats for almost 8 years. All I have is this 56 inch screen as my outlet to the world. I do what I can.

                    And btw I did march in Tampa
                    due to my Type I diabetes I ended up with blisters and gangrene. I am not healthy and only can do what I can.. Some people here at Dkos make some assumptions they should stop doing.

                    •  No, I hadn't seen the follow up comment. Either (0+ / 0-)

                      way this type of interaction could go on forever once it becomes adversarial.  I see I posted the rec on a comment I agreed with before the issue of his disability came up.

                      I stayed out of the thread after the rec and my initial comment.

                      Let me ask you something... My impression every time I've tried to engage you in discussion is that things quickly deteriorate into a very personal clash.  Do you see it like that, or do you see it in another way?

                      That's why I don't usually engage with you when you post in my diaries.

                      Hopefully you don't see this as an attack or anything like that; I'm just trying to point out the dynamics of the interactions.

                      But you understand what I mean about endless back-and-forth once these types of dynamics take hold, right?

                      Either way, we tried.

                      •  Here's the thing Ray (1+ / 0-)
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                        You wrote a diary in support of OWS. hangingchad shared his opinion, and you suggested he was trolling, because his opinion didn't align with yours. When I pointed out that hangingchad had apparently contributed significantly to OWS given his limitations, your response was basically, 'well, I didn't know he was handicapped at the time, and I didn't say anything after that'. What about an apology?

                        My question is, what kind of a movement can you build, if you're treating people like hangingchad as trolls? How receptive would you expect him to be to your message in the future?

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