The best in arts & entertainment, news, pop culture, and your mom since 2002.

[Total: 27    Average: 3/5]
56 Comments - View/Add
Hits: 7926
Rating: 3
Category:
Date: 09/18/11 08:44 AM

56 Responses to Internet Trolling: Should It Be Illegal?

  1. Profile photo of ferdyfred
    ferdyfred Male 40-49
    13631 posts
    September 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm
    Link: Internet Trolling: Should It Be Illegal? - A UK internet troll has been jailed for mocking dead teenagers on various websites. Should trolling be against the law?
  2. Profile photo of Aedran
    Aedran Female 18-29
    295 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 8:56 am
    Eh...iffy on it. On the one hand, people are genuinely being hurt and some of what trolls do violates personal security (stalking, death threats, etc.). On the other hand, freedom of speech. I think if it doesn`t cause someone endangerment...then no.
  3. Profile photo of nubblins
    nubblins Female 18-29
    1743 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:00 am
    Free speech shouldn`t be illegal.
    However, someone needs to hit these fools over the head with a crowbar and teach them some manners.
  4. Profile photo of Jowsh
    Jowsh Male 18-29
    1237 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:05 am
    Wow I can`t believe what I`m reading - Talk about a totalitarian approach to free speech! Ironic that they feature a photo of Stephen Fry, who I`m sure would object to such harsh measures.. Where do you draw the line?

    I feel for the families and the people posting this junk need to get a life -But trolling is one thing, harassment of bereaved relatives is another...
  5. Profile photo of ChrisMunich
    ChrisMunich Male 18-29
    383 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:14 am
    Tricky..I suppose this fills a fine line between freedom of speech and harassment.
  6. Profile photo of LillianDulci
    LillianDulci Female 18-29
    2674 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:15 am
    People who do poo like that are idiots, but they shouldn`t be put in jail for it. It`s freedom of speech. You can`t stop people from being non-nice individuals just because it hurts people`s feelings. I wouldn`t be happy if it was my family members, but there is a block feature on facebook for a reason.

    Now if it`s death threats or harassment, that`s a different situation. Simply making fun of someone`s death isn`t a danger to anyone though.
  7. Profile photo of Gerry1of1
    Gerry1of1 Male 50-59
    36672 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:17 am

    It`s easy to say what that guy did is bad,
    but where is the line between trolling and free speech? It can get blurry.

    The family should have just kicked the guys ass.
  8. Profile photo of Angilion
    Angilion Male 40-49
    12387 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:21 am
    Eh...iffy on it. On the one hand, people are genuinely being hurt and some of what trolls do violates personal security (stalking, death threats, etc.).

    Violating personal security in any significant way is already illegal in the UK and has been since before the web existed. The laws were written to be independent of media and they`re overly broad and vague anyway (so they can be used against protestors of any kind, if the authorities want to do so).

    What`s being talked about is actually quite different, despite how it`s being portrayed. The intent is to continue to demonise the internet for having fewer automatic controls than the real world, so that more controls can be imposed without effective objection being possible. Eventually you`ll have to verify your identity to go online at all, so everything you do can be easily tracked.

    On the other hand, freedom of speech. I think if it doesn`t cause someone endangerment...then no.[/quot
  9. Profile photo of DrProfessor
    DrProfessor Male 18-29
    3894 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:28 am
    Freedom of speech. That`s all there is to say about it--I don`t approve of your message, but if that`s the cost of having that right for everyone, it`s worth paying.
  10. Profile photo of lostinkorea
    lostinkorea Female 30-39
    3727 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:30 am
    Well, I hope not. I mean the hits on IAB would drop DRAMATICALLY! ;-)
  11. Profile photo of the_windy
    the_windy Female 18-29
    1589 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:33 am
    Did anybody catch what the charges were? Surely they can`t send a person to jail under the charge of "trolling", or "making fun of" someone.
  12. Profile photo of Angilion
    Angilion Male 40-49
    12387 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:34 am
    [quote">You can`t stop people from being non-nice individuals just because it hurts people`s feelings.[/quote">

    You can in the UK. Well, you can`t but the authorities can. Totalitarianism in the law has been quietly increased by deception for decades now.

    Public Order Act 1986

    Sections 4, 4a and 5 - note the annotated amendments which change the defence of being in a private dwelling to exclude internet use - "had no reason to believe that the words or behaviour used, or the writing, sign or other visible representation displayed, would be heard or seen by a person outside that or any other dwelling".
  13. Profile photo of Angilion
    Angilion Male 40-49
    12387 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:36 am
    Did anybody catch what the charges were? Surely they can`t send a person to jail under the charge of "trolling", or "making fun of" someone.

    They can in the UK. Public Order Act 1986, as amended 1994 and 1995. Also Criminal Justice Act 2003.
  14. Profile photo of Angilion
    Angilion Male 40-49
    12387 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:39 am
    Off on a tangent...are trolling and flaming really considered the same thing nowadays? They were quite different when I started online.
  15. Profile photo of HalfPintRoo
    HalfPintRoo Female 18-29
    2765 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:47 am
    When it comes to trolling, I think there is a nice clear line from that and "free speech". Debating about a hot topic or personal (even offense) opinion is free speech. Saying "I fell asleep on the tracks lolz" on a memorial page for a dead teenager is trolling, not a matter of free speech. Creating online identities is one thing, using them to torment someone (such as a 13 year old girl) is trolling!
  16. Profile photo of MrPeabody
    MrPeabody Male 30-39
    1920 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 9:53 am
    Q.Did anybody catch what the charges were?

    A. Duffy pleaded guilty to two counts of sending a communication of an indecent or offensive nature.

    Source
  17. Profile photo of lukas1051
    lukas1051 Male 18-29
    3426 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 10:14 am
    There`s a line. Pointless or stupid comments are annoying. Linking an unsuspecting person to lemonparty can be pretty hilarious and won`t cause any long term damage. Even tasteless jokes can be funny, if not largely due to the shock value. However, directly targeting the grieving families of dead people "for the lulz" makes you a real piece of sh-t, anyone who does that should really get a life.

    I think the punishment was a bit extreme, but maybe it will act as a deterrent.
  18. Profile photo of Silverflame
    Silverflame Male 18-29
    90 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 10:51 am
    If so, i want to be a internet cop
  19. Profile photo of Oldfrt
    Oldfrt Male 50-59
    750 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 11:11 am
    The definition of `trolling` in the article is way too broad. I always thought it was being intentionally offensive to provoke a reaction, more the fishing reference than the monster reference. Including cyber bullying though, makes no sense to me.

    But to the question at hand. People found ways to handle people who are rude face to face, I suspect it won`t be long before society will find a better way to correct those who are rude on line. I would not want to see that happen through criminal prosecutions though. We have too many laws as it is.
  20. Profile photo of Listypoos
    Listypoos Male 40-49
    3069 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 11:16 am
    It`s the thin end of the wedge... I think the UK government has been waiting for a case like this to come along so they can justify tighter controls over the net, all whilst giving a veneer of only doing it to protect the vulnerable - wno don`t really need their protection in this way.... the site owners could have blocked the guy`s IP address at any stage, could have just removed any offensive messages, had the site self policing with all the other people just calling the guy a dickhead and making him look silly for trolling. But none of those easily imposed measures would have made headlines or got any sort of support for the government stepping in and taking more control of the web... the freedom on it frightens the life out of governments and I doubt there is one government out there that wouldn`t censor to the level of the chinese if they thought they`d currently get away with it with the electorate.

  21. Profile photo of Listypoos
    Listypoos Male 40-49
    3069 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 11:18 am
    Besides, the courts can`t really do any worse to that guy than nature`s already done... he`s not only a trolling dickhead, he`s a really drating ugly one. Which I guess is why a lot of trolls do it... it`s not like they must get lots of positive attention in real life social interactions.
  22. Profile photo of Anger
    Anger Male 18-29
    218 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 11:28 am
    trolling families who lost someone is pretty low
    but making a facebook memorial is stupid

    a regular memorial will do just fine
  23. Profile photo of Justahuman
    Justahuman Male 18-29
    109 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 11:54 am
    No its not against the law to be a cowardly non-nice individual.
  24. Profile photo of Solvent
    Solvent Male 18-29
    2842 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 12:14 pm
    Welcome to the future, where having a sense of humor will get you arrested.
  25. Profile photo of Baelzar
    Baelzar Male 40-49
    1399 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 12:41 pm
    Of course not. This is even a question?

    It`s dangerous to start categorizing free speech.
  26. Profile photo of xiquiripat
    xiquiripat Male 18-29
    2422 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm
    George Orwell approves. If the UK wants to be a totalitarian nanny state (the lamest kind of totalitarianism ever invented) that`s fine. But in the U.S. if the WBC protesting funerals is protected speech then so is "trolling"(whatever the legal definition of that is).
  27. Profile photo of garprice05
    garprice05 Male 30-39
    11 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 12:59 pm
    4 south wales minors died last week and some tasteless drat made a facebook group mocking them causing offence to thousands. shove your free speech up your ass
  28. Profile photo of Listypoos
    Listypoos Male 40-49
    3069 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 1:01 pm
    @Baelzar "It`s dangerous to start categorizing free speech."

    Trouble is, this isn`t the UK starting it, we started a while ago, for instance what the wesboro baptist church get away with over there could be classed as a hate crime here - so this is just another step in that direction of putting ever increasing caps on freedom of speech.

    on one hand it`s sometimes nice to see dickheads shut up.... on the other, it shouldn`t be the state shutting them up it should be their peers.
  29. Profile photo of Essersmith
    Essersmith Male 18-29
    275 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm
    No, if we ban it, what would guys like TrollrJak do all day then? productive things? hah.
  30. Profile photo of Fatninja01
    Fatninja01 Male 30-39
    25420 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 1:17 pm
    His tact was not cool... trolling can be fun when your only keeping it like you would around friends. But he pro-actively made fun of dead people in a very fowl way and did deserve what happened.
  31. Profile photo of Kaleotera
    Kaleotera Female 18-29
    472 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 1:50 pm
    This guy is scum, plain and simple. However, on the issue of should trolling be illegal..I don`t think so.

    Instead, if you excessively troll, 2 government agents come to your house and bitch slap you for 20 minutes.(and post pics on a website so we can all get a laugh.)
  32. Profile photo of Angelmassb
    Angelmassb Male 18-29
    15511 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 2:19 pm
    I hope it becomes Illegal but then again we would lose like 80% of IAB users then
  33. Profile photo of SilverThread
    SilverThread Male 30-39
    3431 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 3:15 pm
    Don`t make trolling illegal, make severe ass kickings legal and do away with anonymity. Shoot man, Trolling can be great for a laugh, but that guy wasn`t a troll, he was a worthless arsehole.
  34. Profile photo of Exithops
    Exithops Male 30-39
    14 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 3:51 pm
    The unfortunate nature and junk byproduct of relative freedom of speech. Hardly surprising that anonymity breeds toxic self-indulgent posting but the alternative "cure" is worse than the disease IMHO.
  35. Profile photo of Cajun247
    Cajun247 Male 18-29
    10732 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 4:27 pm
    "I disagree with what you say, but I`ll defend to death your right to say it."
    -Voltaire
  36. Profile photo of SmilinSam
    SmilinSam Female 18-29
    3599 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 5:28 pm
    Instead, if you excessively troll, 2 government agents come to your house and bitch slap you for 20 minutes.
    ^^^THIS!!! YES FOR THIS!!!^^^^
  37. Profile photo of SlothOfDoom
    SlothOfDoom Male 30-39
    2033 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 5:51 pm
    There are two sides to every story, and the BBC has definitely skewed this one. I recommend you get the otherside of things before passing judgement.
  38. Profile photo of Jade_Phoenix
    Jade_Phoenix Female 18-29
    407 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 6:17 pm
    That`s just pathetic.
  39. Profile photo of jamie76
    jamie76 Male 30-39
    2345 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 6:36 pm
    the UK has so little freedom left anyway this does not surprise me. This is total and utter bullpoo still and no one should ever be arrest for trolling.

    everyone that does not like that can sucks balls...now go call the police and have them arrest me for trolling.
  40. Profile photo of HalfPintRoo
    HalfPintRoo Female 18-29
    2765 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 8:32 pm
    @jamie76- thats exactly what I meant by offensive opinions. Nothing wrong with what you said at all... but again, "I fell asleep on the tracks, lolz" on a teenagers family memorial page is trolling... Surely you see the difference
  41. Profile photo of OldOllie
    OldOllie Male 60-69
    15841 posts
    September 18, 2011 at 10:06 pm
    We often forget that the UK does not have a Bill of Rights.
  42. Profile photo of CrakrJak
    CrakrJak Male 40-49
    17514 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 12:03 am
    Essersmith: You`d likely go back to harassing people crossing your bridge.
  43. Profile photo of Essersmith
    Essersmith Male 18-29
    275 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 7:32 am
    Dont be silly, i only harass you.
  44. Profile photo of pocketmoron
    pocketmoron Male 18-29
    191 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 7:51 am
    They set up a facebook page and allowed anyone in the entire world with a facebook account to post on it. Someone posted on it. And then went to jail. Sounds drating stupid. The fact that it was "offensive" is extremely relative. Like is pointed out in the article, comedians more often than not make fun of people in order to get a laugh. If the people were really that up in arms about the post, then they shouldn`t have opened the facebook page to comments. Seriously. I fear for society when bullying on the internet is this big of a deal. We`re setting up the next generation to be nothing but whinny emo bitches.

    The conspiracy theorist inside of me is also sounding the alarm bells. This sounds like a convenient excuse to allow the government to silence anyone who says things that they don`t like. Like groups who use facebook to organize protests against unpopular governments. Far-fetched, maybe, but something to keep in mind.
  45. Profile photo of HalfPintRoo
    HalfPintRoo Female 18-29
    2765 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 8:34 am
    There is a huge difference in making fun of someone for a comedy sketch and going on a memorial page for a dead child (public or not, who cares) and posting something hateful and unfunny just because you can. My head is spinning in shock that so many of you don`t see the difference between freedom of speech and hateful trolling. What he said is not expressing opinion, he said something completely out of line on a page were those filled with grief visit to support one another through a hard time.
  46. Profile photo of HalfPintRoo
    HalfPintRoo Female 18-29
    2765 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 8:39 am
    I suppose the case where trolls were emailing leaked pictures of a beheaded accident victim directly to her parents is ok too. After all, your rights and freedoms would have been violated if you weren`t allowed to do that, right?
  47. Profile photo of pocketmoron
    pocketmoron Male 18-29
    191 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 9:02 am
    So emailing pictures to people is illegal? Oh, well then I think nearly every internet user is at fault and should be thrown in jail. The recipient of the email took offense at the picture? I think nearly everyone on the internet has taken offense at at least one picture, and for every picture that`s uploaded to the internet, at least one person takes offense at it. Does that mean everyone who uploads pictures to the internet should be thrown in jail?

    The point is that "offensive" is a relative term. What one person finds offensive, other people find hilarious. For example, I nearly always laugh at comical depictions of muhammad, whereas muslims take offense at any depiction of muhammad, humorous or otherwise.
  48. Profile photo of pocketmoron
    pocketmoron Male 18-29
    191 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 9:02 am
    What`s the difference between making fun of someone on a comedy sketch and making fun of someone on the internet? Both are meant to be funny. People took offense at both. What`s the difference? You personally didn`t take offense at the comedy sketch, but you took offense at the internet sketch? I`m sorry to break it to you, but the last time I checked, no one person was king of the world.
  49. Profile photo of HalfPintRoo
    HalfPintRoo Female 18-29
    2765 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 9:52 am
    I hope you never experience what those families have experienced. I hope your mother never has to either.
  50. Profile photo of Arcval
    Arcval Male 18-29
    304 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 10:25 am
    Free speech includes hate speech.

    You ban non-nice individuals saying this poo you both make everyone unaware that they`re non-nice individuals and you set the dangerous president that the government can determine what you can and can`t say.

    Free speech is an intrinsic and inherent right and cannot be removed by any man or institution.
  51. Profile photo of Midarc
    Midarc Male 30-39
    26 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 10:54 am
    Well, there`s a difference between the flash of vitriol on a public forum and determined, continued pursuit and harrassment of an individual over a period of time.

    Given that sensitivity to comments can differ wildly between individuals, it`s a hard to judge when a person has gone too far and I find myself leaning towards advocating the ignoring of morons over pursuing litigation or legal procedings.

    Of course, directly emailing an individual, as highlighted by HalfPintRoo (and especially considering the content specified), is a step too far towards harassment to be permissable.

    Freedom of expression in the UK is less a right and more a series of types of expression you have a right to be protected from.
    Insulting and harrasment are two of them.

    How this interacts with the internet, whether the location of the poster, target or the comment is primary in enforcement of law, is an area deserving of scrutiny.

    Buggered if I know.
  52. Profile photo of ZsaZsaGoar
    ZsaZsaGoar Female 18-29
    144 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 11:07 am
    It should be legal to punch someone in the face if they instigate it.
  53. Profile photo of CrakrJak
    CrakrJak Male 40-49
    17514 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 11:11 am
    Essersmith: You must really love me then, to give me that much attention. I must disappoint you though, because I`m straight.
  54. Profile photo of MikeyNiv
    MikeyNiv Male 18-29
    697 posts
    September 19, 2011 at 12:36 pm
    Trolling isn`t bullying. And I mean by definition.
  55. Profile photo of jimbobsthebe
    jimbobsthebe Male 18-29
    639 posts
    September 20, 2011 at 7:56 am
    This post is stupid... anyone who reads it is clearly an idiot.

    Sorry, I just couldn`t resist ;)
  56. Profile photo of Essersmith
    Essersmith Male 18-29
    275 posts
    September 20, 2011 at 8:30 am
    How do you know? i mean you dont get out much..

Leave a Reply