Reply to post: Re: Welll that's a stupid report...

Trolls prevail because good men do nothing: boffins

Michael Wojcik Silver badge

Re: Welll that's a stupid report...

Did you actually read the paper, or just the article? I haven't, because I'm not inclined to pay $20 to read it right now and I'm not teaching this year so I don't have online access to the university library to get it for free. But I did read the abstract, and as far as I can tell, your argument has nothing to do with what Dillon and Bushman are claiming.

Certainly, you have my sympathy, as does anyone in your position. I've been observing online hostility since circa 1990; I even discussed it a bit in an article I wrote for Works and Days back in '94. I hold language degrees, and much of my theoretical work touches on violence committed through language use.

But work like Dillon & Bushman contributes toward understanding and addressing precisely those kinds of situations. They're specifically investigating whether the Bystander Intervention Model, a sociological model developed to investigate how bystanders get involved in "real-world"1 violence and injustice, works for online discussion as well. That's a useful thing to know, for people who want to study online verbal violence and for people who want to address it.

1An unfortunate term, since obviously discourse that occurs online is obviously also part of the real world.

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