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HOW TO

Managing Trolls
By: Katie Gatto
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    2009-09-23

    Table of Contents:
  • Managing Trolls
  • Registration
  • Take the venom out of your trolls
  • Setting up a policy

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    Managing Trolls - Registration


    (Page 2 of 4 )

    The people who post comments on your site may have the right to express their feelings, but no one ever gave them the right to do so behind a shield of anonymity. People online often feel like they are allowed to post things that they would never want attributed to them in real life. It is the sense of being able to hide behind the word "anonymous" on a comment that plays a mental game on many people, who then feel like the concept of manners is gone.

    Making the people on your site attach their comments to a name, and an email address, is one way to show them that others will know who is making the comments. It will also be a handy tool for you as a site manager. If you find that a particular member (or members) of your community is stirring up all of your trouble you can issue a warning, or ban them from posting comments completely, should they ignore you.

    Just be sure that you also use a policy in conjunction with this method. If you don't, you could end up with complaints about unfair site administration practices. The policy is your safeguard, because it allows you to point to a policy by which your users should be abiding, and a clear violation of it as your reason for booting them from the site. If you don't know how to set a policy, then you can check out the section later in this article.

    Allow the community to moderate via a vote

    If your site has a large or a very active user community, then you may be able to get your community to push out the hate from your site. How exactly do you get them to do this? By making it fun of course. Allow your readers to vote on comments made by the other commenters on your site. When a comment achieves a certain rating, it can either be deleted by default or go into moderation.

    Each option has a good and a bad side. If you allow the comments that are unpopular to be deleted by default, then any comment that is in the minority could be eliminated, even if the content is valid. The good side is that you will not have to do as much work once the system is up and running.

    If you send unpopular comments back to moderation, then you will have to do a bit more work in order to check these comments. This way, however, you will be sure that you are not allowing any comments that are merely unpopular to be deleted. What you decide to do is up to you; just be aware of the consequences of each decision.

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