A MUST-READ by Brendan O’Neill:
The reality? Well, two trolls – not a thousand, or a hundred, or even 10 – had charges brought against them and this week pleaded guilty. And these two trolls, this non-army, these completely insignificant individuals, are being crushed by the full forces of the state and the media. They’ve been named, shamed and demonised across the tabloid press, doggedly pursued by the Crown Prosecution Service and the cops, dragged before courts of law, and now face possible detainment at Her Majesty’s pleasure. What we were told was happening online – that vulnerable women in the media and politics were being silenced by a veritable army of haters – is the polar opposite of what has really happened, which is that influential women, backed by the media, the police and the courts, have successfully silenced two not-very-threatening individuals. Of all the numerous media scare stories of 2013, the troll one has proven to be the most myth-packed and warped.