Meeting the Troll

A couple of years after Leo Traynor opened a Twitter account, he became the victim of a troll.

It started in July 2009. I'd been on Twitter for over 2 years at that point having joined in May 2007, and I'd never had a problem. My account was followed by a fairly innocuous looking one which I followed back and within 10 minutes I had received a Direct Message (DM) calling me a 'Dirty f*cking Jewish scumbag'. I blocked the account and reported it as spam. The following week it happened again in an identical manner. A new follower, I followed back, received a string of abusive DM's, blocked and reported for spam. Two or three times a week. Sometimes two or three times a day. An almost daily cycle of blocking and reporting and intense verbal abuse. So I made my account private and the problem went away for a short while. There were no problems on Twitter but my Facebook account was hacked, my blog was spammed and my email address was flooded with foulmouthed and disgusting comments & images. Images of corpses and concentration camps and dismembered bodies.
Again, it eased off for a couple of weeks. I relaxed. Thought they'd finally tired of failing to get a reaction from me. Boy, was I wrong.

The situation escalated, as Traynor's wife also became the victim of online abuse, and then he started receiving threatening packages in the mail. A serious cyber-investigation followed, and this summer Traynor found out who the troll was. And that's where the real surprise was. And the confrontation that followed is a fascinating story. Read it all at his blog. Link -via Boing Boing


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Simply amazing story.

I too am abit awestruck at how much compassion the guy brought to the final confrontation.

I might have nuked it from orbit instead; -just to be sure.
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It was handled completely wrong. Whomever at that house was harassing Leo, is likely doing it to other people. I do not even believe that it was the kid doing it. Before forgiving, Leo should have demanded a full investigation of the whole family's computers. Evil like that will just move on to another victim and do a better job of hiding.
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I wish I could say I would have shown such restraint. Just reading it, I was afraid for his life. I'm afraid I would have demanded his eyeballs or something.
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