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Hypocrite Trolls

Remember last week?

It turns out that Roger Ebert was not a meanie.

Instead, someone was even more low and left a comment in Mr. Ebert's name that was trollish, thereby casting Mr. Ebert in a bad light. And that's something else that I didn't include in my post on Friday about various possibilities of Trolldom.

And this scenario shouldn't have slipped my mind. In fact, it was only a few weeks ago that one of my friends left his Facebook account open at school and later discovered that his classmates had used his account to post "indecent content" and change his sexual orientation (among other things).

That is all moderately legitimate fun with little lasting damage (overall). It's a prank, but it's not exactly malicious.

But using someone else's name/identity as a cover for your bile is just plain nasty.

That's the worse application of hypocrisy out there. That is purposefully lying about who you are so you can damage others under the name of someone else.


That's disgusting and very destructive in this online world where reputation is one of the only things we have available to us. We are again far too removed from those with whom we interact to be able to contact them and get at the truth.

It's almost like we're back to an age when transportation was miserably slow and people stayed within their little areas. Today we stay in our houses and cubicles and only catch rumors of those around the globe with whom we interact and work.

There is little chance of face time with many of these people.

And so, much like The Crucible, we have little more than our good names.

Don't be a hypocrite.

~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Expectant Father

P.S. ...and perhaps this is another reason Anonymous comments can be so bothersome: We can't gauge where the person is coming from, and we can't tell how honest they are being with us.


Anonymous said...

Yeah... kinda figured that wasn't the real Ebert... and found it kind of silly they took that at face value...

Luke Holzmann said...

I'm not shocked it wasn't the real Ebert either.

On the other hand, I've read enough very nasty posts and rants from "professionals" that it made perfect sense (with what limited experience I have had with Mr. Ebert).

And you touched on one of my main points in the post: We take stuff online at face value because we have so little else to balance it against.


Anonymous said...

Perhaps it's just been one too many trips to after untrue stories kept hitting my inbox from people I trusted... I'm very wary of anything being true when it comes from an online source (even if it is only one generation away from someone I trust). So I'd wager our inboxes are something to balance it against.


Anonymous said...

Ryan, it was, in retrospect, foolish of me not to do at least an ARIN WHOIS search to find out the location of "Roger Ebert."

However, in my 3+ years of blogging, my experience has been that, with that particular subject matter, people with viewpoints which oppose my own have absolutely no reservations about vilifying me or those who think/believe like me. One guy who used to regularly post to ridicule me actually kept (probably keeps) the subject matter on his RSS feed, simply so that he can track down those who disagree with him and blast them on their own blogs. Then, he (and others like him) go back to their own lairs, proclaim the foolishness of the newly-discovered blogger, and they all come, en masse, to criticize. THEN, they all go down my blogroll and proceed to vilify my blogfriends who may (or even may not!) agree with me.

That whole turn of events has happened to me more than once.

And, I knew that Ebert had (truly) recently posted a strident article stating his own beliefs, which are oppositional to mine, and in which he ridiculed those like me (i.e., those who happen to be creationists and/or believe in God).

So, when Ebert's name started popping up on my blog as a commenter, I wasn't surprised. Obviously, I should have taken more caution in my belief that he was Ebert. But, given my history with the topic, and with previous dissenters, I wasn't as careful as I should have been.

Hope all that makes sense.