Trolls and Hackers

Recently I got a really offensive and illogical comment on one of my blog entries. The guy was clearly trying to get a rise out of me, and since his argument was specious at best, I could have verbally shot him down quite easily, but I didn’t take the bait. The best way to get rid of a troll, I’ve found, is to not feed it. I simply deleted the comment without responding.

Trolls always take me by surprise, because it’s not in my nature to be hostile to total strangers (or to anyone, for that matter). Apparently some people get some perverse pleasure from it. I find this behavior incomprehensible. It’s easier for me to view these people as a different species entirely. It’s as if the predatory, lizard part of their brain has devoured their entire frontal lobe, and they have no human feelings or conscience whatsoever. I can’t even imagine how sad and lonely their existence must be.

But if I don’t understand trolls, I really, really don’t get hackers. At least trolls are feeding off your pain. Although I can’t relate, I can sort of compare them to cats playing with a mouse. Hackers, on the other hand, cause destruction without even getting the “benefit” of their victim’s negative reaction much of the time.

Hackers can shut down entire networks, thus impacting all the people who rely on said networks. Thousands and thousands of people who have done nothing to you. Thousands and thousands of people who will be affected in ways you’ll never know. What’s the point? Extortion rarely works. Identity theft? How long can that be maintained? Is that really your path to happiness? Do you wake up smiling? What in your mental makeup causes you to believe that this is a good idea?

Greed doesn’t sound like a very satisfying spiritual meal to me. Nor does hostility. But then, these people probably have no spirit. How very strange to be sharing a planet with these creatures.



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