How Donald Trump Is An IRL Internet Troll

The following is an opinion piece that does not necessarily reflect the views of Rise News. It was originally published in Rise Miami News.  

By Fred Russell

In watching the almost continuous news coverage of Donald Trump’s recent gaffs, I started to notice a pattern developing. There was a word for how this man was acting.

I had my suspicions about what he may have been doing, but I couldn’t be sure. It all started when he made openly bigoted statements about Mexican immigrants, suggesting they were “rapists” and “criminals”.

Then, at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, he disrespected Senator John McCain by suggesting that he was not in fact a war hero, because he had been captured. At this point it was starting to become clear that Mr. Trump was saying these things purely to gain attention from anyone who would look in his direction.

This type of behavior is known among some internet users as “trolling”. At least that’s what it seemed like to me. Urban Dictionary defines the word “Internet Troll” as: “Someone who posts controversial, inflammatory, irrelevant or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum or chat room, with the primary intent of provoking other users into an emotional response or to generally disrupt normal on-topic discussion.”

I woke up a few days later, flipped the television on to watch the news with some coffee. My suspicions were confirmed in such spectacular fashion, I did a spit-take and sprayed Mr. Trump directly in the face with my morning cup of joe. Donald Trump had publicly listed the cell phone number of a U.S. Senator, and encouraged millions of viewers on live television to give him a call. A video surfaced the next day on the internet of Senator Lindsey Graham destroying his cell phone by throwing it at a wall.

So there it was. Doxing. Wikipedia defines doxing as: ”Doxing (from dox, abbreviation of documents), or doxxing, is the Internet-based practice of researching and broadcasting personally identifiable information about an individual.”

They go on to explain: “Doxing may be carried out for various reasons, including to aid law enforcement, business analysis, extortioncoercionharassmentpublic shaming and vigilante justice.”

In this case, I would say that Donald Trump had doxxed his fellow Republican presidential candidate for the purpose of harassment. In true troll form, he had inconvenienced someone simply because it garnered attention for him.

I am sure some will suggest that if I know he just wants attention, I should probably refrain from writing about him and stop giving him what he wants. However, anyone familiar with the garden-variety internet troll knows that in any argument, there will be one person who points out the troll and makes a great suggestion. I am that guy.

Most internet message boards and social networks come with a special option, which allows users to break contact with anyone who bothers them. Hit the block button. Ignore him, America. Put this bigoted, antagonistic ass behind you. That is where asses belong.

Cover Photo Credit: Sarah Russell

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