February 25th 2013 | Comments

How not to be an internet troll

How Not To Be An Idiot Troll On The Internet

Our honest opinion is that the quality of gentlemanly discourse on the internet went right down the toilet the day they did away with the entrance exam. Call us snobs, but these days they let just about anybody online irrespective of whether they are a gentleman, gentlewoman or person of refined manners.

Back in those halcyon days of 1997 with our AOL dial-up and Windows 3.11 (the operating system of gentlemen), discussion was frank, formal and polite. Nowadays, they even let teenagers on the internet, along with the sort of knuckle-dragger who’d crap in your airing cupboard given half the chance.

Internet Troll

He doesn’t wear socks

And the major problem with this being you don’t know they’re there until they start blasting you with their dreadful manners, ill-formed opinions and the very worst behaviour we have come to expect from jumped-up members of the serving classes.

The temptation – of course – is to allow oneself to be dragged down to their level, and fight fire with badly spelled, grammatically incorrect fire.

DO NOT DO THIS. A gentleman rises above these so-called “trolls”, and leaves them to their natural habitat: The bottom half of the Daily Mail and the whole of YouTube.

The philosophy we follow is a simple one, and comes from the internet’s Wil Wheaton. Although nothing good ever came from our former American colonies, we are prepared to make a exception for Mr Wheaton and his guidance:

“Don’t be a dick”.

Four simple words, that sum up thousands of years of knowledge, from the words of the Holy Bible, the great Greek philosophers, the teachings of Buddha, and the satyagraha protests of Mahatma Gandhi.

Alas, a great many people on the internet these days are unable to follow this simple guidance and are, in fact, dicks.

As gentlemen, and therefore the top 1% of the internet (congratulations), we lead by example and offer others the best possible behaviour on the internet. Be it in the face of Twitter trolls, Facebook idiots, and people who leave insults in discussion forums simply because they can, we implore you not to be a dick.

Instead, there is only one course of action: Offer the cur out of a duel and be done with him.