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Opinion

Extinguishing trolls  

VERBAL VARIETY - Anne Fe Perez - The Freeman

Social media giant Meta recently extinguished over 400 accounts believed to be trolls positioned to attack for the upcoming elections. They found out that they have been doing massive bullying, harassment, and proliferation of false information on the different platforms that the company owned. It’s like neutralizing humans who do not have the balls to reveal their real information yet they want their own content (unverified at that) to be consumed by netizens. If there are only 400 accounts plaguing the sanctity of the polls, there might be many others that are just out there in the internet waiting for the right time to attack.

I know people who have been victims of hate on the internet, myself included. This was during the many instances I have been vocal on certain issues. The attackers want to take me down by hitting on my personal life instead of dealing with the real issue. The claims become baseless with no facts and evidence to support it. Yet they continue to be so adamant because their identity remains anonymous. It is in anonymity where confidence of these attackers are boosted. They find no limit to their attack because they know they can get away with it so easily. What they don't know is that they look like cowards, unable to face their victims head-on. It is only the monitor screen that acts as a wall to shield them. They wallow in pride for victory, yet do not seem to see their pointless cause.

This society operates on facts that are based on paper trails and yet again, concrete evidence. This is also a factor that these attackers do not have in their hands. In the context of the elections, there are institutions that work hard to fact-check these false claims. When the truth comes out, they make the sphere noisier and attack below the belt. It is clearly unruly and unprofessional. If you ask me, it is definitely not worth the time.

We actually do not have to wait for Meta to take them down. The simplest way to extinguish trolls is to fight them back with nothing. The less engagement, the more eager they want to fight until they tire out. They look for another issue and another victim then the cycle continues. If we do not tolerate that, then they might even reach the end. I actually feel bad for these platforms that provide free networking to the world but are abused. They are equivalent to heartless humans who would rather spend precious time on the internet.

How far does an attack go? Does it change the world? Does it bring their cause justice? Or is it simply their way to please themselves? We can choose to engage with them for a little bit of fun but at the end of the day, there is no point to it. Let that online rage translate to votes instead.

SOCIAL MEDIA

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