Troll Hunter: Inside the TV show about hunting the internet's biggest jerks


#1

[Permalink]


#2

The best weapon against a troll is Ultra-violet light. UVB rays. The
same as the sun, or a tanning lamp. Sunlight causes a Troll to turn to
stone or explode.


#3

Similar things are known to happen to Landrover electrics…


#4

You know, I don’t really care if the TV guy is a dick. He’s not out there anonymously harassing handicapped teens, so I say no, he does not resemble his prey. Not in the least.


#5

That fat jerk Robert Aschberg is actually the grandson of a fat jerk named Olof Aschberg. Olof was a creep banker, who back during the Bolshevik Revolution, helped Lenin fence gold and diamonds stolen from the Russian People to keep the Bolsheviks from going bankrupt. He founded the Nya Banken bank in Sweden, then became head of Russia’s first International Bank the Ruskombank. In other words this Robert Aschberg is scum descended from scum that has the blood of millions of dead Russian Peasants on his hands.


#6

“Troll Hunter” was such an awesome movie. It’s a pity it never got more widespread recognition.


#7

I would watch there shit out of an US show that did this.


#8

wait, so his dad was an asshole and he inherited his wealth so he is an asshole as well? “Sins of the Father”? So blood money is supposed to be given away to charity? If you inherited a bunch of money from some jerk, I’m sure you would give all the money away, I mean, why spend the money (that is already yours, no killing or trickery needed) to spread awareness about an issue you believe should be discussed?


#9

He’s an asshole because he uses granddaddy’s blood money to bully people he doesn’t agree with on the internets. If he ever tries to bully me, I’ll go down to Sweden and kick his ass. Punk.


#10

So people should have the right to bully people without being bullied themselves? Doesn’t make much sense.


#11

Troll Hunter is an awesome movie. I’ve been hearing rumors of a Part II. I hope so.


#12

So, trying to stop a shitbag from harassing someone with a physical deformity is “bullying people he doesn’t agree with”. That says quite a bit about you. Not so much about Aschberg.

What have you done to help the teen girl? Nothing? Thought so.

Why would he bother with you? Have you been terrorizing disabled people?


#13

The whole “turning into the monsters you fight” is a valid concern, but reading the whole article puts it into perspective. The main thing is that the trolls tend to be trolls only due to their anonymity, and the article points out that with the exception of the one who denied everything (and though improbable, may actually be a case of mistaken identity), spill the beans rather easily.

I think the show – no matter what you thing of Mr. Aschberg personally – serves a good purpose, to repeat the message that you are not as anonymous as you think, so you should think twice about harassing others, lest you make yourself fair game. Besides, the article only uses the show as bookends to talk about Researchgruppen, the real troll hunters. The full article mentions is how they exposed prominent politicians constantly writing racist slurs under the veil of anonymity, and how this goes beyond mere trolling.

So please, people, read the whole thing. That’s why Xeni posted just a snippet, after all!


#14

This is wrong in several ways:

  1. Justice should be administered by the state, not by private organisations. The state, in turn, should be limited by democratic oversight, by its own laws, and by human rights considerations.

  2. Justice should be done for justice’s sake, not for entertainment’s sake. Otherwise, one guy will get away because either he or the victims lack entertainment value, and another guy will get publicly shamed, because, well we’re not quite sure if we got the right email address, but boy does he look guilty, the audience will love it!

  3. Public shaming as a punishment for private individuals (as opposed to, politicians and organisations) has been out of fashion since the middle ages.

  4. Anonymous and pseudonymous speech on the internet needs to be protected; if anonymity is circumvented, it should be done by official investigators (again with proper oversight) not by private vigilantes.

  5. It’s unlikely that a TV show employs due process. Aschberg acts as investigator, judge, jury and executioner. Okay, the punishment isn’t exactly the death penalty, just like the crime isn’t exactly murder. Due process isn’t just a good idea for capital cases.

Of course, it is also right in some ways:

  1. Systematically harassing individuals from the cover of anonymity is bad. There is nothing wrong with considering it a crime and acting accordingly.

  2. When vigilantes appear, it’s a sign that something is wrong and needs to be fixed, even if I don’t approve of the vigilantism.

  3. Judging from the screenshot in the article, the suspect’s face was blurred out. Good, that means Aschberg is nowhere near stooping to the trolls’ level.


#15

You are right on most of your points, and yet…hell will freeze solid before the resources are available for any kind of official response to harassing trolling on the internet. In the meantime, it looks like something like this is the only method to ever cause problems for the sad individuals who find amusement in causing pain online. Perhaps the fear of exposure will drive a few of them back into their lairs.

While they are at it, I wish they would go after the scammers who inhabit Craigslist, who try to entice the unwary into responding to their phony offers. That would be a true public service.


#16

There is a kind of service the vigilantes provide. They are much more likely to tell us how they did the deanonymization, while the Official Investigators are much more likely to hide their methods under a veil of secrecy. So we all then will know how to be anonymous better.

I don’t care about what some clown in some other country said, that’s a local interest. I care about correlation of traffic tickets with geotagged photos - that’s the part of the story that’s globally interesting.


#17

That may or may not be true. There have certainly been convictions in Austria, but I doubt that there are sufficient resources for going after every case. Which may even be a good thing, as the exact boundary between harassment and free speech online may need to be tested in a few court cases before we go after all the trolls. Starting slowly is just being cautious.

If you want resources available for policing something, it’s up to voters/taxpayers to make them available. At least that’s how it works in Austria, and I assume that Sweden is similar in this respect. Naturally, police aren’t guaranteed to be competent, but waste is guaranteed. But that’s life.

But let’s assume that it’s true that this is the only way to cause problems for the trolls. So what? If the only way to get rid of a criminal is to lynch him, then you let him go.

You say I’m right on most of my points, but yet you seem to imply that this kind of TV-backed cybervigilantism is a good thing. Which confuses me - I must not have worded my five points strongly enough. Every single one of them was meant to be a sufficient reason why I think that a troll-shaming TV show is wrong.


#18

Hopefully, naming people who are abusing the anonymity of the internet is not the same thing as “lynching” them. I was simply seconding your idea that using this method judiciously is a good thing. but also pointing out that we can barely follow up on actual identity thefts fast enough, let alone allocate resources to stop online bullying. I’m not sure what the political climate may be in Austria, but if you follow US politics, you might agree that it is hard enough to get public money spent on feeding people who are starving, let alone establishing this kind of program. Surely we can find some middle ground beyond throwing up our hands and saying, “Oh, well”.


#19

Good, now I understand where you’re coming from.

As the article is about Sweden, I did not even try to adjust my post for transatlantic cultural differences.

I understand your point about public money in America; it’s obvious that as a matter of principle and long-standing political traditions there is just less of it, with the obvious exception of military spending. In Austria, we don’t have the problem that it’s hard to get public money spent; it practically seems to spend itself. We definitely have the exact opposite problem.
I’d have assumed that “fighting crime” is still something that a lot of money gets spent for, but then again, I’d assume that Americans are less likely to consider any kind of speech a “crime”. Here in Austria you can get a day in court and a fine for publicly “insulting somebody’s honor” or for “spreading bad rumors” about an individual.Those paragraphs are more-or-less automatically being applied to the online world, as well.

Of course I didn’t mean to imply that naming & shaming is the same thing as lynching. We’re talking “first world problems” here; we’re not talking about violent crime here. They’re doing something wrong, but still I don’t want those trolls sent to prison. Just as I said: “Okay, the punishment isn’t exactly the death penalty, just like the crime isn’t exactly murder. Due process isn’t just a good idea for capital cases.”

I’m still against looking for a “middle ground” here; for me, this is about rule of law as applied to small-scale problems. Punishing crime, no matter how small, and no matter how light the punishment, must be done right, or not at all. And something is either against the law, or it isn’t; and if it isn’t against the law, you deserve to be protected from public shaming on TV. Unless you’re already a public figure and the things that you are being shamed for are relevant to that.
So while you’re talking about practical ways of discouraging the bad guys, I’m trying to make this about basic inviolable principles of a civilized/free/whatever society.

P.S.: Christmas is celebrated in Austria starting in the afternoon of December 24th, so I’m unlikely to respond any more before Christmas. Merry Christmas!


#20

Merry Christmas to you as well.

I think we are largely in agreement, although I am less expectant that officialdom will ever strike the right balance on the rule of law question. In the US at least, the implementation of the rule of law is a combination of political correctness, the whims of short attention spans, the ebb and flow of authoritarianism, public polling at any given moment, and the good will or ill will of powerful political figures. Actual repeated principles…not so much.

We are rock solid on the rhetoric of ideals, but not so good on the followup. We are also easily swayed by unreasoning fears, by unthinking ideology, and very subject to emotional manipulation. Oh, and also not so great at detecting logical fallacies, as our system of education gets dumber and less inclusive.

I remain still hopeful of good outcomes, but less and less disappointed or surprised when they don’t occur. Best regards.