Is it ok to call another user a troll now?

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 10, 2011
10,026
2,948
I'd like clarification on this as it seems that it now ok to call someone a troll, accuse them of trolling, etc. I remember in the past that this was a violation of TOS.
 
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dejo

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 2, 2004
15,981
450
The Centennial State
No, it's not okay to call someone a troll. From the Rules for Appropriate Debate:

Name-calling. Name-calling falls into the category of insults and will be treated as such according to the forum rules, your own opinion about another member notwithstanding. You can't call a bigot a bigot, a troll a troll, or a fanboy a fanboy, any more than you can call an idiot an idiot. You can disagree with the content of another member's statement or give your evidence or opinion to dispute their claims, but you may not make a negative personal characterization about that member.
However, accusing someone of trolling, in and of itself is allowed, since the mod team considers that a comment on someone's posting and not the poster themself. In other words, we moderate the noun but not the verb.
 

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 10, 2011
10,026
2,948
No, it's not okay to call someone a troll. From the Rules for Appropriate Debate:



However, accusing someone of trolling, in and of itself is allowed, since the mod team considers that a comment on someone's posting and not the poster themself. In other words, we moderate the noun but not the verb.
Thanks for clearing that up. It seems that has changed from a year or so ago when suggesting someone was trolling would draw moderator action. So you can say "that's a stupid post" as long as you don't say the person who made it is stupid?
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,085
6,452
The Black Country, England
Thanks for clearing that up. It seems that has changed from a year or so ago when suggesting someone was trolling would draw moderator action. So you can say "that's a stupid post" as long as you don't say the person who made it is stupid?
It hasn't changed. You can post comments which are critical about the content of a post but you also have to be careful not to cross the line into trolling.

From the Forum Rules
  1. Trolling. Do not post in order to anger other members or intentionally cause negative reactions. For a given post, this can be a subjective call, but a pattern of such posting or an especially egregious case will get you banned.
From the Rules for Appropriate Debate
  1. Trolling. Posts that appear to be designed to cause argument or irritate rather than contribute to a constructive discussion are considered trolling and will be treated as such.
 

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 10, 2011
10,026
2,948
It hasn't changed. You can post comments which are critical about the content of a post but you also have to be careful not to cross the line into trolling.

From the Forum Rules


From the Rules for Appropriate Debate
I understand that, but IMO, the interpretation and enforcement of it has been all over the place and in the past year or so I see a lot more posts that are borderline but not removed.
 
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throAU

macrumors 603
Feb 13, 2012
6,333
3,778
Perth, Western Australia
If you want to make a point, criticize the facts statements, not the poster.

There's no need to call people stupid, if they're posting stupid things it should be self evident.


edit:
* may not be facts, but opinions/statements made. criticizing facts is stupid anyway. if they are FACTS they are not in dispute.
 
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SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,199
9,459
Detroit
I understand that, but IMO, the interpretation and enforcement of it has been all over the place and in the past year or so I see a lot more posts that are borderline but not removed.
The process for determining what is and isn't trolling is a subjective one and one that isn't always easy for us to decide on. Remember we're all people and we all have different views and opinions on things. We try our best to err on the side of not moderating when we can to allow free discussion of topics and only step in when something is egregious enough for action. Your definition of trolling is going to certainly be different than mine and everyone else given any borderline post on the forum simply because we are different people with different outlooks on things.

Some people think just by using the word troll it's trolling or name calling when it may not be. Its all in the context of how its used and the staff sometimes has to try to read minds to discover what the intent was behind statements and determine if we think it was trolling or not.

Being consistent in moderating trolling isn't easy. If more people could be respectful to others and at the same time have a little thicker skin, trolling wouldn't be as prevalent in some cases. Many times we see reports where someone says another member is trolling or insulting them when in reality they're just disagreeing with them. Those are easy to reject but the post reporter thinks we're allowing trolling or insults, but we're not. Its just their definition is different from the rest of us and they're upset that someone disagreed with them.

In the end, we try to refrain from moderating when we can and only do so when we have to, in accordance with our rules and guidelines, and sometimes it’s a very gray area when it comes to trolling.
 

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Original poster
Feb 10, 2011
10,026
2,948
The process for determining what is and isn't trolling is a subjective one and one that isn't always easy for us to decide on. Remember we're all people and we all have different views and opinions on things. We try our best to err on the side of not moderating when we can to allow free discussion of topics and only step in when something is egregious enough for action. Your definition of trolling is going to certainly be different than mine and everyone else given any borderline post on the forum simply because we are different people with different outlooks on things.

Some people think just by using the word troll it's trolling or name calling when it may not be. Its all in the context of how its used and the staff sometimes has to try to read minds to discover what the intent was behind statements and determine if we think it was trolling or not.

Being consistent in moderating trolling isn't easy. If more people could be respectful to others and at the same time have a little thicker skin, trolling wouldn't be as prevalent in some cases. Many times we see reports where someone says another member is trolling or insulting them when in reality they're just disagreeing with them. Those are easy to reject but the post reporter thinks we're allowing trolling or insults, but we're not. Its just their definition is different from the rest of us and they're upset that someone disagreed with them.

In the end, we try to refrain from moderating when we can and only do so when we have to, in accordance with our rules and guidelines and sometimes it’s a very gray area when it comes to trolling.
Thank you very much for the excellent explanation. I know moderating isn't easy and must be frustrating at times. I appreciate hearing moderation's point of view.
 

bpeeps

macrumors 68040
May 6, 2011
3,114
3,020
The process for determining what is and isn't trolling is a subjective one and one that isn't always easy for us to decide on. Remember we're all people and we all have different views and opinions on things. We try our best to err on the side of not moderating when we can to allow free discussion of topics and only step in when something is egregious enough for action. Your definition of trolling is going to certainly be different than mine and everyone else given any borderline post on the forum simply because we are different people with different outlooks on things.

Some people think just by using the word troll it's trolling or name calling when it may not be. Its all in the context of how its used and the staff sometimes has to try to read minds to discover what the intent was behind statements and determine if we think it was trolling or not.

Being consistent in moderating trolling isn't easy. If more people could be respectful to others and at the same time have a little thicker skin, trolling wouldn't be as prevalent in some cases. Many times we see reports where someone says another member is trolling or insulting them when in reality they're just disagreeing with them. Those are easy to reject but the post reporter thinks we're allowing trolling or insults, but we're not. Its just their definition is different from the rest of us and they're upset that someone disagreed with them.

In the end, we try to refrain from moderating when we can and only do so when we have to, in accordance with our rules and guidelines, and sometimes it’s a very gray area when it comes to trolling.
Just want to say this was awesomely informative.
 

macs4nw

macrumors 601
If we all showed a little more respect and used a little more common sense, I'd venture to say many problem areas could be eliminated and not even crop up in the first place. A little courtesy by all of us could go a long way.

I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters... :D
 

sim667

macrumors 65816
Dec 7, 2010
1,371
2,881
In short, you can't call people a trolling, but you can say someone is trolling. However in my experience, there is disparity in how the rule is applied, you may still get a ban for saying someone is trolling.
 
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pat500000

Suspended
Jun 3, 2015
8,523
7,512
If we all showed a little more respect and used a little more common sense, I'd venture to say many problem areas could be eliminated and not even crop up in the first place. A little courtesy by all of us could go a long way.

I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters...I will not insult other posters... :D
I will not insult other posters...I will not.....insult other posters.
 

Rab Simpson

macrumors regular
Feb 10, 2006
173
74
Glasgow, Scotland
If we all showed a little more respect and used a little more common sense, I'd venture to say many problem areas could be eliminated and not even crop up in the first place. A little courtesy by all of us could go a long way.
The problem you have is that 'common sense' is far from common and rarely reflects reality when it is. Additionally, how do we deal with users whose comments are disrespectful in a way which isn't impolite? For instance, effectively calling someone a gullible moron by suggesting that they read a book written by a blatant snake oil salesman. If someone suggested that I read such a thing it would tell me that they think I'd be dim enough to swallow it. They might have made this suggestion in a polite fashion which at face value doesn't appear disrespectful, but the proof, as they say, is in the pudding.
 

LizKat

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2004
6,429
34,939
Catskill Mountains
The problem you have is that 'common sense' is far from common and rarely reflects reality when it is. Additionally, how do we deal with users whose comments are disrespectful in a way which isn't impolite? For instance, effectively calling someone a gullible moron by suggesting that they read a book written by a blatant snake oil salesman. If someone suggested that I read such a thing it would tell me that they think I'd be dim enough to swallow it. They might have made this suggestion in a polite fashion which at face value doesn't appear disrespectful, but the proof, as they say, is in the pudding.
When in doubt, reply by puting up an image of an owl or some other bird looking askance at the camera. and move on.
 

Qbnkelt

macrumors 65816
Oct 15, 2015
1,058
994
Mid-Atlantic
What I personally find extremely frustrating is when I go into a thread, completely happy as, for example, a thread about an upcoming device and I'm immediately hit with someone dripping sarcasm and staying just below the threshold of posting an actual insult. Then you get a group of people disrupting nearly every positive Apple thread using words like sheep or isheep.
Why are Apple detractors so prevalent, people whose every post, and I mean every single post, is disruptive and mocking of us who prefer Apple products? Why should I be hounded, mocked, and ridiculed, on an Apple centric site, for preferring Apple products? It's as if I'm on a Samsung site insulting Samsung instead of being on an Apple centric site expressing.....gasp....my love of Apple products and my enjoyment of their use.
There are users whose every single post is a praise of Samsung and a ridicule of Apple users. Yet this is habitual. On an Apple centric site.
 

MrAverigeUser

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2015
740
336
europe
@ Qbnkeit

disclaimer: I do not at all try to ofend you, but I am VERY astonished about your very special view on facts… so let me just explain my personal view about the problem...


There are also a sort of "militant apple apologists" who are as offending as the people you classify as "detractors"…

They are as offending as the other side and - just an actual example - people who´s iPhone is unusable for days after the IOS 9.3 release that this is NOT apple´s fault and they do even claim that the apple customers who are unable to us their business-phone are sort of guilty themselves….

And they praise apple - when apple actually admits by releasing IOS 9.3.1 that it WAS their fault - for their "excellent customer service" ….

They do the same with poor apple customers who petitioned and begged FOR YEARS repair of their barbecued dGPUs in their MBPs 2011-2013 and nMP 2013-2015 (same problem) praising apple for their "perfect customer service by extended repair program" - when in fact apple just started this after YEARS of class action lawsuit battle at court when they are some seconds before losing the case!

What do you think? Is this respectful - or with your own words:
"Why should (them) be hounded, mocked, and ridiculed, on an Apple centric site, for preferring (= having been trustful as apple customers) Apple products?

Do you think it is normal to - again with your words - "ridicule Apple users" after they lost 2,000-3,000 USD/EUR and "Welcome" them with the sarcastic apologist-standard-phrase "You are free to buy other products, nobody will force you to buy apple products" when in fact they just did the same thing as you did: being trustful in the urban legend that apple still sells reliable products and the urban legend that they care about customers?

I am one of the many customers who lost 4,000 EUR in just 5 years because I trusted in crappy apple products.
What do you think how people like me feel when they are told that they were just apple haters instead ( in fact) victims of nowadays apple greed and ignorance of customer needs?

As for you - OTHER people than me discussed with you in a thread about problems of customers who - after updating their device - for the first (since a longtime irrelevant) password which has been used by the first owner - sometimes years ago. It was YOU who wrote sarcastic comments on these poor customers. OTHER people than me explained in all patience with you that your arguments are false and why they are false. You denied.

And just at the point it was EVIDENT that you are WRONG - you have disappeared instead of just admitting that you were wrong and the OTHERS were right. Which is by the way regularly the case when apologists end up without any more pro-argument in correct and calm discussions.

And the cream on top: You came here to play the unguilty victim…

It is not always "The OTHERS" who do things wrong…. think about it.

Sometimes one has to admit to have been wrong - what is so difficult to admit this? We are all adults who can just say: "OK, you are right, this is xyz" - this is normal in scientific discussions and should be the aim in every constructive discussion in life, isn´t it?

peace

edit: As for me:

I am just a critical customer: Purchased apple products for about 20.000 EUR in the last 8 years - and I expect just that apple fulfills his OWN claims about reliability and customer service.
And I have the right to criticize them massively if I lose more than 20% of my investment because they do NOT their homework but do just the opposite they claim.

I´d call that an upright customer. Customers who invest their time to criticize are worth gold for enterprises because they push quality action and quality control without being payed.

people just always claiming enterprise x and y were perfect and god-like think they serve the enterprise - in fact the others do more by forcing the enterprise to abolish bad practise and aim for better products. That´s what apple was like - once upon a time…
 
Last edited:

Qbnkelt

macrumors 65816
Oct 15, 2015
1,058
994
Mid-Atlantic
@ Qbnkeit

disclaimer: I do not at all try to ofend you, but I am VERY astonished about your very special view on facts… so let me just explain my personal view about the problem...


There are also a sort of "militant apple apologists" who are as offending as the people you classify as "detractors"…

They are as offending as the other side and - just an actual example - people who´s iPhone is unusable for days after the IOS 9.3 release that this is NOT apple´s fault and they do even claim that the apple customers who are unable to us their business-phone are sort of guilty themselves….

And they praise apple - when apple actually admits by releasing IOS 9.3.1 that it WAS their fault - for their "excellent customer service" ….

They do the same with poor apple customers who petitioned and begged FOR YEARS repair of their barbecued dGPUs in their MBPs 2011-2013 and nMP 2013-2015 (same problem) praising apple for their "perfect customer service by extended repair program" - when in fact apple just started this after YEARS of class action lawsuit battle at court when they are some seconds before losing the case!

What do you think? Is this respectful - or with your own words:
"Why should (them) be hounded, mocked, and ridiculed, on an Apple centric site, for preferring (= having been trustful as apple customers) Apple products?

Do you think it is normal to - again with your words - "ridicule Apple users" after they lost 2,000-3,000 USD/EUR and "Welcome" them with the sarcastic apologist-standard-phrase "You are free to buy other products, nobody will force you to buy apple products" when in fact they just did the same thing as you did: being trustful in the urban legend that apple still sells reliable products and the urban legend that they care about customers?

I am one of the many customers who lost 4,000 EUR in just 5 years because I trusted in crappy apple products.
What do you think how people like me feel when they are told that they were just apple haters instead ( in fact) victims of nowadays apple greed and ignorance of customer needs?

As for you - OTHER people than me discussed with you in a thread about problems of customers who - after updating their device - for the first (since a longtime irrelevant) password which has been used by the first owner - sometimes years ago. It was YOU who wrote sarcastic comments on these poor customers. OTHER people than me explained in all patience with you that your arguments are false and why they are false. You denied.

And just at the point it was EVIDENT that you are WRONG - you have disappeared instead of just admitting that you were wrong and the OTHERS were right. Which is by the way regularly the case when apologists end up without any more pro-argument in correct and calm discussions.

And the cream on top: You came here to play the unguilty victim…

It is not always "The OTHERS" who do things wrong…. think about it.

Sometimes one has to admit to have been wrong - what is so difficult to admit this? We are all adults who can just say: "OK, you are right, this is xyz" - this is normal in scientific discussions and should be the aim in every constructive discussion in life, isn´t it?

peace

edit: As for me:

I am just a critical customer: Purchased apple products for about 20.000 EUR in the last 8 years - and I expect just that apple fulfills his OWN claims about reliability and customer service.
And I have the right to criticize them massively if I lose more than 20% of my investment because they do NOT their homework but do just the opposite they claim.

I´d call that an upright customer. Customers who invest their time to criticize are worth gold for enterprises because they push quality action and quality control without being payed.

people just always claiming enterprise x and y were perfect and god-like think they serve the enterprise - in fact the others do more by forcing the enterprise to abolish bad practise and aim for better products. That´s what apple was like - once upon a time…
First off, I didn't speak about you nor referred to you at all.
Second point, I don't "disappear." I leave threads due to several reasons, for example, I could choose to not engage further when it's obvious there is nothing left to say except go around the May Pole one more time. Frankly, the times I haven't simply walked away have resulted in more pain than had I left. In many forums there is an advice to go to another thread and to choose when to leave an argument. It's best for me when I take that advice rather than get suspended.
Third....is might simply have something better to do.

So thanks for singling me out when I've done nothing of the sort with you. And in fact, I don't remember you at all. I remember the tnread, but not you. And the threads that I was thinking of wasn't even the one you mentioned.

So have a grand day.
 

MrAverigeUser

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2015
740
336
europe
First off, I didn't speak about you nor referred to you at all.
Second point, I don't "disappear." I leave threads due to several reasons, for example, I could choose to not engage further when it's obvious there is nothing left to say except go around the May Pole one more time. Frankly, the times I haven't simply walked away have resulted in more pain than had I left. In many forums there is an advice to go to another thread and to choose when to leave an argument. It's best for me when I take that advice rather than get suspended.
Third....is might simply have something better to do.

So thanks for singling me out when I've done nothing of the sort with you. And in fact, I don't remember you at all. I remember the tnread, but not you. And the threads that I was thinking of wasn't even the one you mentioned.

So have a grand day.

You missed completely the point of what I wrote.

I never claimed that you even mentioned me in that thread. It is more a general analysis of the daily discussions with some actual examples to show that I am not talking about nothing.
I mentioned myself only to explain that it is easy for me to understand people who are "not amused about apple at all" and who are often enough more or less insulted by the radical ones of the apple-apologist-fraction here, because they often lost a lot of money - and I understand them very well because I lost a lot of money too due to crappy hardware as well ..

I cannot imagine that it is so difficult to understand what I tried to explain. Perhaps it is sometimes less the ability to understand what I wrote in my posting above but more the lack of goodwill to understand it or admit that it might be worth thinking about what I wrote - I don´t know.

I talked about the "other extreme" tof what you talked about: the "apple apologizers" in a general way.

And - by coincidence - I gave you some very actual examples how apologizers offend (maybe not willingly, but often even willingly) people who just criticize apple for more or less important failures or real-existing crappy hard-/software.

Read my above posting again and again until you - perhaps - get finally the point of what I aimed to explain… and read the mentioned thread with your discussion again as well….
 
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Qbnkelt

macrumors 65816
Oct 15, 2015
1,058
994
Mid-Atlantic
You missed completely the point of what I wrote.

I never claimed that you even mentioned me in that thread. It is more a general analysis of the daily discussions with some actual examples to show that I am not talking about nothing.
I mentioned myself only to explain that it is easy for me to understand people who are "not amused about apple at all" and who are often enough more or less insulted by the radical ones of the apple-apologist-fraction here, because they often lost a lot of money - and I understand them very well because I lost a lot of money too due to crappy hardware as well ..

I cannot imagine that it is so difficult to understand what I tried to explain. Perhaps it is sometimes less the ability to understand what I wrote in my posting above but more the lack of goodwill to understand it or admit that it might be worth thinking about what I wrote - I don´t know.

I talked about the "other extreme" tof what you talked about: the "apple apologizers" in a general way.

And - by coincidence - I gave you some very actual examples how apologizers offend (maybe not willingly, but often even willingly) people who just criticize apple for more or less important failures or real-existing crappy hard-/software.

Read my above posting again and again until you - perhaps - get finally the point of what I aimed to explain… and read the mentioned thread with your discussion again as well….
Look, I'm not going to get into it with you. I have zero problems with Apple and that's why I buy their products. I feel no need to defend myself or my reasons. Nor will I apologise for my satisfaction. So if you find my expression of my experience with Apple products offensive, that's on you.

Have a great evening. I'm out of this thread.
 

Meister

Suspended
Oct 10, 2013
5,456
4,309
Look, I'm not going to get into it with you. I have zero problems with Apple and that's why I buy their products. I feel no need to defend myself or my reasons. Nor will I apologise for my satisfaction. So if you find my expression of my experience with Apple products offensive, that's on you.

Have a great evening. I'm out of this thread.
I love :apple: and hate windows with a passion, but there are some very legitimate reasons to critizise :apple: products.
 
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