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Troll Hunting: Inside the World of Online Hate and its Human Fallout

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In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled online. She received scores of hateful tweets, including a death threat. A picture of Ginger heavily pregnant alongside her husband and two-and-half year old daughter appeared on a fascist website. Understandably she was terrified, but once the attack subsided, she found herself curious. Who were these trolls? How and why did t In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled online. She received scores of hateful tweets, including a death threat. A picture of Ginger heavily pregnant alongside her husband and two-and-half year old daughter appeared on a fascist website. Understandably she was terrified, but once the attack subsided, she found herself curious. Who were these trolls? How and why did they coordinate such an attack? And how does someone fight back against a troll? Over the next five years  Gorman spoke to psychologists, trolling victims, law enforcement, academics and, most importantly, the trolls themselves, embedding herself into their online communities and their psyches in ways she had never anticipated. What she discovered was both profoundly shocking and fascinating. Syndicates of highly organised predator trolls across the globe systematically set out to disrupt and disturb. Some want to highlight the media's alleged left-wing bias, some want to bring down capitalism, and some just want to have fun. Even if it means destroying someone's life... An intense and compelling read, Troll Hunting is an important window into not just the mindset and motivation of trolls, but the history of this kind of aberrant behaviour. Ginger Gorman has gained unprecedented access to trolls, even formed strange and enduring relationships with them, and her comprehensive investigation into what makes them tick has given us a brilliant book that is impossible to put down. 


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In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled online. She received scores of hateful tweets, including a death threat. A picture of Ginger heavily pregnant alongside her husband and two-and-half year old daughter appeared on a fascist website. Understandably she was terrified, but once the attack subsided, she found herself curious. Who were these trolls? How and why did t In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled online. She received scores of hateful tweets, including a death threat. A picture of Ginger heavily pregnant alongside her husband and two-and-half year old daughter appeared on a fascist website. Understandably she was terrified, but once the attack subsided, she found herself curious. Who were these trolls? How and why did they coordinate such an attack? And how does someone fight back against a troll? Over the next five years  Gorman spoke to psychologists, trolling victims, law enforcement, academics and, most importantly, the trolls themselves, embedding herself into their online communities and their psyches in ways she had never anticipated. What she discovered was both profoundly shocking and fascinating. Syndicates of highly organised predator trolls across the globe systematically set out to disrupt and disturb. Some want to highlight the media's alleged left-wing bias, some want to bring down capitalism, and some just want to have fun. Even if it means destroying someone's life... An intense and compelling read, Troll Hunting is an important window into not just the mindset and motivation of trolls, but the history of this kind of aberrant behaviour. Ginger Gorman has gained unprecedented access to trolls, even formed strange and enduring relationships with them, and her comprehensive investigation into what makes them tick has given us a brilliant book that is impossible to put down. 

30 review for Troll Hunting: Inside the World of Online Hate and its Human Fallout

  1. 5 out of 5

    Paul Bryant

    As I was reading this book it did dawn on me that I MYSELF AM A TROLL right here on Goodreads. The great majority of trolling is done for the lols, you know. Joking around, yanking people’s chains, getting a rise out of the unwary, lotsa lolz. So when I adopt the persona of an irritable 12 year old to review Gulliver’s Travels and complain that the author totally ripped off Honey I Shrunk the Kids, or I want my money back because there were no songs in Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, or I critici As I was reading this book it did dawn on me that I MYSELF AM A TROLL right here on Goodreads. The great majority of trolling is done for the lols, you know. Joking around, yanking people’s chains, getting a rise out of the unwary, lotsa lolz. So when I adopt the persona of an irritable 12 year old to review Gulliver’s Travels and complain that the author totally ripped off Honey I Shrunk the Kids, or I want my money back because there were no songs in Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, or I criticize Steinbeck for not writing enough about mice in Of Mice and Men to warrant the joint billing, that’s really trolling, and many people have eagerly berated me for not realizing that Gulliver’s Travels was written a long time before Honey I Shrunk the Kids, and that Of Mice and Men is a quote from a poem. Oh, I did not know that, I say, and anyway, who cares, lol. WHEN THE LOLS STOP DEAD The ugly end of internet trolling is very straightforward – anyone sending death and rape threats to women should be given a prison sentence, that’s as much of a no brainer as the scummy trolls are themselves no brainers. But there is a much greyer, more convolutedly complex form of trolling, and a lot of this book is clogged with Ginger Gorman’s flailing attempts to find a foothold in this soggy, sinking moral morass. Let’s take #sandylootcrew. This was a “successful” co-ordinated campaign of what’s classed as media fuckery, a type of trolling designed to expose the built-in prejudices of our beloved mainstream media, and by extension, our own prejudices. During Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, one of the trolls interviewed by Ginger, Meepsheep, explains that trolls pretended to be a horde of black looters by making “all these accounts on Twitter pretending to be a bunch of black dudes in New Jersey and…posting that we’re going around looting and robbing and whatever during the hurricane. We used the tag #sandylootcrew and just through that, it attracted a lot of media attention. We were saying totally ridiculous things”. Many media outlets seemed to genuinely believe that an army of black people were looting everything from shirts to…cats! . … the tweets were explicitly and obviously fake. The posts contained racial stereotypes exaggerated to the extent that the messages became implausible Meepsheep said : That is kind of where some of the value of trolling comes from, that it can point out some of these flaws. GG is not convinced. She says What if, in exploiting the community’s entrenched prejudices for caricature, you unwittingly create actual racism? THE ALF GARNETT PROBLEM This is not a new question. Way, way back in 1965 a British comedy writer created the character Alf Garnett in the tv sitcom Till Death Us Do Part (this became All in the Family with Archie Bunker, in the USA). He was a white working class Conservative bigot who was very frequently explicitly racist, and this was done by the leftie Speight in order to satirize his attitudes. But not surprisingly, a part of the show’s huge audience turned out to be cheering on enthusiastically all of Alf’s tirades against blacks and wogs and Pakis. Oh dear! The satire defense is always very dubious. For instance, you get all manner of gross misogyny being served up and presented as satire and black humour, supposed itself to be excoriating misogynistic attitudes, not confirming them. (See Brett Easton Ellis’ nervous explanations of American Psycho, and Nick Palumbo’s outrageous claims about his movie Murder Set-Pieces.) THINGS CAN CHANGE People used to chuck the contents of chamber pots out onto the street, they used to spit on the street and on buses (I just about remember signs on buses NO SPITTING), they used to smoke cigarettes all the time, everywhere, they also used to let their dogs poo all over the place, on pavements, in parks, anywhere. None of this happens anymore. THEY DO SOMETIMES THROW TROLLS IN JAIL 9 July 2013 An internet troll whose grossly offensive Facebook postings included threats to kill 200 US children has been jailed for more than two years after a judge heard how he spread terror in local schools. Reece Elliott, 24, left abusive comments on tribute pages set up for two teenagers who died in car accidents, and when challenged, he sent more nasty messages directly to pupils living in Warren County, Tennessee, in February. 24 May 2015 New figures have revealed that 1,209 people were convicted of internet "trolling" last year – equivalent to three guilty verdicts per day. Of those convicted, 155 were jailed for sending messages or other material which was "grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character". The offence falls under Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003, which was rarely used before the invention of social media networks in recent years. 10 Feb 2017 An internet troll who sent antisemitic messages to a Labour MP and other victims has been jailed for more than two years. John Nimmo sent messages to Luciana Berger, the Liverpool Wavertree MP, which included a picture of a knife and a threat that she would “get it like Jo Cox”. He referred to Berger as “Jewish scum” and signed off his messages with the words “your friend the Nazi”. 1 Aug 2018 A disabled woman who was hounded by a “warped” internet troll for more than a year said she can “finally breathe again” now he has been jailed. Nicky Wright never met online abuse campaigner Nicola Brookes but stalked her on an almost daily basis online between June 2016 and September last year – mocking the fact she had Crohn’s disease, making sexually offensive remarks and even publishing her address. The 39-year-old came face-to-face with his victim for the first time when he was jailed for six months at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday. Ms Brookes was bombarded by the obsessive “total stranger” who used 28 Twitter, 25 Facebook accounts or pages as well as blogs, online radio and video channels to carry out his “cowardly” campaign of hatred, the court heard. He photoshopped pictures of her, doctored comments she made, created videos about her, made sexually suggestive comments and posted hate mail. 15 Nov 2018 A "callous" internet troll who posted offensive material about a woman who was crushed to death outside a nightclub has been jailed. Paul Hind, 38, called Durham University student Olivia Burt, 20, a "sex worker" and "prostitute" on Facebook. Hind admitted he carried out his crimes when he was “bored" and confessed after an earlier court hearing "I targeted dead people because perhaps I knew that deceased people could not fight back, which is a really cowardly thing to do. "I knew they couldn't say anything because they were dead, unfortunately." THIS BUZZFEED ARTICLE IS EXCELLENT https://www.buzzfeed.com/patricksmith... Here we have the stories of two jailed British trolls, one female, who both sent rape and death threats to Caroline Criado-Perez, who was campaigning for a woman to be featured on the £10 note, and Labour MP Stella Creasy, who supported the campaign. The article interviews both of them about motive and life after jail. I thought this statement by John Nimmo was remarkable : "It was trending," he says. "I saw it was trending, so I looked into what it was about and, stupid me, I decided to join in. And I was getting, like, retweets, I was getting favourites and all that – and even the person I was sending tweets to, the person I was tweeting at, was retweeting it and answering back." Nimmo had – at best – only a vague idea who his victims were. Only after sending his abusive tweets did he see a TV news item about the £10 note campaign. CAROLINE CRIADO-PEREZ "Not feeding the trolls doesn’t magically scrub out the image in your head of being told you’ll be gang-raped till you die." She wrote an article about the whole thing which includes a handy list of the rape & death threats she got, should you be interested https://www.newstatesman.com/internet... WHERE DOES THE HATE COME FROM? It’s a large question, but undoubtedly most of the hate comes from young or youngish white men who have come to feel that they live in a suffocating liberal-left culture & that white men have been made the scapegoat for the whole world’s problems and who now perceive themselves to be the real victims & react by spewing forth unlimited hatred upon the easiest, most obvious targets, women and minorities and leftists. The cliché of the kid in the basement who’s never had a girlfriend is not that far off, according to Ginger. (Cf the modern incel self-identification.) Except that the guys she interviews (at length) aren’t like that. THE WRAP-UP I already read a similar book This is Why we Can’t Have Nice Things (great title) by Whitney Phillips. She is the sociologist, and Ginger Gorman is the emotionally committed journalist. Both books are essential reading about this whole cyberhate thing. Neither has any silver bullet solution, cause there ain’t one.

  2. 5 out of 5

    etherealfire

    Chilling.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Carly Findlay

    I received an advanced copy of Troll Hunting from Hardie Grant. I have also pre-ordered a copy from Booktopia, paying for it myself. And I am featured in Troll Hunting – Ginger is a dear friend and she interviewed me about my experience of being trolled. It was enthralling and un-putdownable, but I needed to take breaks for my own mental health. I can’t imagine the impact on Ginger when researching and writing it. Troll Hunting is about cyberhate – relentless and malicious online trolling. It fe I received an advanced copy of Troll Hunting from Hardie Grant. I have also pre-ordered a copy from Booktopia, paying for it myself. And I am featured in Troll Hunting – Ginger is a dear friend and she interviewed me about my experience of being trolled. It was enthralling and un-putdownable, but I needed to take breaks for my own mental health. I can’t imagine the impact on Ginger when researching and writing it. Troll Hunting is about cyberhate – relentless and malicious online trolling. It features stories of being the victim of trolling from many people, and perspectives from trolls themselves. These are particularly creepy to read. The justification of cyberhate is vile. Ginger took such great care in telling my story of being trolled on Reddit - five years ago now - and I know she’s been gentle in telling everyone else’s stories in the book. Ginger is angry too - rightly so. Trolling is an epidemic that costs victims their jobs, families and lives – yet police and government authorities and social media don’t take tracking down and punishing trolls serious enough. This mustn’t have been an easy book to write - Ginger’s strength and researching ability is commendable. It’s so well written and researched, and easily readable for all the referencing and dark subject matter. Troll Hunting isn’t fiction. It real life. The internet is real life, therefore trolling is real life. Troll Hunting will make your stomach churn, but also make you marvel at Ginger’s (and other victims of trolling’s) resilience, and the unlikely friendship between her and a troll. I really hope it shakes up the way cyberhate is dealt with by authorities - because cyberhate destroys lives.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Katty O'Neill

    I was preparing myself to take a long time with Troll Hunting. Not for lack of interesting content, mind you, but for my general peace of mind. Delving deep into the world of online hate, I thought I would have to dip in and out - immersing myself into Ginger’s story and then coming up for air just for a bit of self preservation. But so far, this hasn’t been the case at all for me. I’ve been engrossed. ‘What are you reading?’ an 80-year-old woman asked me on the train to Ararat yesterday night, I was preparing myself to take a long time with Troll Hunting. Not for lack of interesting content, mind you, but for my general peace of mind. Delving deep into the world of online hate, I thought I would have to dip in and out - immersing myself into Ginger’s story and then coming up for air just for a bit of self preservation. But so far, this hasn’t been the case at all for me. I’ve been engrossed. ‘What are you reading?’ an 80-year-old woman asked me on the train to Ararat yesterday night, ‘you’ve had your head stuck in that book the whole way!’ And it’s true. There is something about Ginger’s writing as she leads herself (and in turn, finds herself being led) deeper into the world of trolling that holds you. As you read, you’ll feel despair and anger and frustration, but there’s also another feeling that will sneak up on you. Awe. Awe for what Ginger has done - putting herself on the line to lift a particularly heavy, slippery and dangerous curtain for everyone to see behind. In an age where the media (especially women in media) are being hounded from all sides, a book like this comes along and just blows your mind. Investigative journalism. Bam. Troll Hunting will make you look at cyberhate directly in the eye. But Ginger’s effective writing, humour and bravery, will help you see it for what it is and what it means. If you’re reading this post it means you’re online. If you’re online, you need to read this book when it comes out early next year.

  5. 4 out of 5

    David Sarkies

    A world of On-line Hate 27 November 2019 – St Arnaud This was a pretty disturbing book to read, though probably not as disturbing as having to research, and write, it, particularly since the writer spoke to some rather interesting people, and some rather disjointed individuals at that. The thing that stood out though is how journalists write somewhat differently to academics, since there seems to be much more personality in this work than I would get from a lot of other non-fiction books, though A world of On-line Hate 27 November 2019 – St Arnaud This was a pretty disturbing book to read, though probably not as disturbing as having to research, and write, it, particularly since the writer spoke to some rather interesting people, and some rather disjointed individuals at that. The thing that stood out though is how journalists write somewhat differently to academics, since there seems to be much more personality in this work than I would get from a lot of other non-fiction books, though it could also be an element of it being an Australian work (and the two other Australian books that I have read recently also seem to have their own style). The thing was that Gorman decided to start writing this book after she was the subject of a trolling attack over an article that she wrote for the ABC (the Australian Broadcasting Commission, not to be confused with the other ABC, that a number of people, included the Twitterer in Chief, have done). This was a story about the struggles of LGBT+ people in North Queensland, and it turned out that a couple that she interviewed turned out to be using this as a cover for some rather nefarious activities. Of course, she got the blame for that, not so much from her bosses, but from the world at large. What is interesting is how some of the most upstanding people can suddenly turn incredibly rabid once they get behind a keyboard, and in many cases, a lot of them don’t even realise what they are doing, or the repercussions that come about from it. Mind you, I learnt my lesson years ago when I sent a lady that I liked an email expressing my undying love for her – yeah, big mistake, something that I know that I not the only person guilty of. Interestingly, I have a friend who is an academic, teaches at a Bible College, and is in the process of completing a PhD. Oh, and she is a female. Yeah, there are large segments of the Christian community that do not believe that she should be doing what she is doing, and a number of them object to the topic of her thesis (I can’t recall the title at this time). Not surprisingly, she has been receiving death-threats from the Christian community over her research, and the fact that she is, well, teaching men. Actually, come to think of it, that probably wouldn’t surprise anybody, considering that many of us know how vicious and nasty some of these Christians can become, even though a lot of them hide behind a mask of respectability when they are in public. In fact, many people have accused the modern internet of creating echo chambers, but I can assure you that there were echo chambers long before the internet become a thing – the church is a classic example. I have been to numerous churches where people simply listen to the pastor pretty much reaffirming their views, and even encouraging them to be mean and nasty to certain segments of the society – and I’m not even talking about the LGBT+ community either (sorry if I missed out any letters by the way). The sad thing is that there seems to be a lot of vitriol directed against the Alt-Right – which I have to admit that there are some rather nasty people that make up that community, and they tend to attract the most amount of attention to themselves as well. However, I can assure you that there are some extreme left-wingers that can be just as bad – don’t let it fool you that all left wing bloggers carefully research everything that they write. Further, I have also noticed that they can drown out alternate views just as well as the alt-right can. One of the questions that does arise is: what are the limits of free speech. Trolls claim that they are defending their right to free speech, but in doing so they are drowning out any voices that they might not like, and unfortunately women and minorities (and especially minority women) get the full brunt of this attack. As a friend of mine said – free speech really only goes so far, and yelling ‘fire’ in a crowded cinema is certainly not going to be defensible under freedom of speech. The problem is that nobody seems to be doing anything about it. In fact, it is pretty hard to deal with, and unfortunately many in the police force just aren’t equipped to be able to handle it. Apparently one of the most common responses is to ‘stay off the internet’. Yeah, sure, that’s an easy solution – not. Then again, it seems that the younger generation are starting to move away from Facebook, and going back to chatrooms, something that was a pretty big thing before the rise of the Social Media juggernauts. Okay, Facebook has Messenger, which is basically its own means of creating a chatroom, but there are lots of others as well. The problem with many of these chatrooms is that it can be impossible to see what is going on inside. It also makes me wonder whether some of these people who are campaigning for a free and open internet really understand what they are wanting, or whether some of these organisations are run by the trolls. In one sense they fight for Net-Neutrality, which is a good thing, but then it comes down to privacy and preventing the tech giants from passing your information onto the authorities. The problem is that sometimes this actually needs to be done, but in the name of privacy, there are people who claim it shouldn’t happen. In the end it really isn’t something that can probably be solved over night. In the same way that people start behaving differently when they are surrounded by their friends, when they are alone goes a long way to understanding why trolls think they can get away with the stuff that they do. As long as they believe that they are anonymous, and that the police don’t care, they continue to do what they do.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brooke - One Woman's Brief Book Reviews

    *www.onewomansbbr.wordpress.com *www.facebook.com/onewomansbbr Troll Hunting : inside the world of online hate and its human fallout by Ginger Gorman. (2019). In 2013, journalist Ginger was trolled online. She was terrified but then curious about who the trolls were, how and why do they attack, and how can one fight back? Ginger spent the next five years researching by speaking to psychologists, trolling victims, law enforcement, academics, and the trolls themselves. This book is that journey and t *www.onewomansbbr.wordpress.com *www.facebook.com/onewomansbbr Troll Hunting : inside the world of online hate and its human fallout by Ginger Gorman. (2019). In 2013, journalist Ginger was trolled online. She was terrified but then curious about who the trolls were, how and why do they attack, and how can one fight back? Ginger spent the next five years researching by speaking to psychologists, trolling victims, law enforcement, academics, and the trolls themselves. This book is that journey and the discoveries Ginger made along the way about the trolls, their targets and the costs of cyberhate. I rarely read non-fiction but this book was highly recommended to me by a friend and sounded quite interesting. Happy to report that it didn't disappoint. 'Cyberhate' is something the majority of internet users are aware of, and a high number have experienced it in some shape and form so this book is very relevant and timely as the issue gets more exposure. The book was compelling and very informative. A few times it felt a bit dry for me, however I also think the information was clearly very well researched and referenced by the author. I enjoyed and found fascinating the author's interactions with 'trolls' and respected her compassion and willingness to try to understand the motivations behind that kind of behaviour. It was disappointing to read about the lack of support for victims of cyberhate; one can only hope that this novel assists in more exposure of the trauma experienced by people and the realisation that it isn't a feasible option for people to just 'turn it off and don't look at it'. Definitely an on topic novel that doesn't necessarily find answers but rightly points out that all of us in modern society are involved in this issue; would recommend this book for those interested in the topic and any regular users of the internet.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Peacegal

    Anyone who has spent any amount of time online has encountered the dreaded trolls. Many times they're faceless accounts spouting juvenile and puerile insults; other times, they're organized and downright scary--sometimes even inciting deadly violence or self-harm. Who, exactly, are these people? While this book didn't hook me as much as a couple other recent books on the subject of online bully culture, I'm glad it was written and value its insights about online abuse and what could or even shoul Anyone who has spent any amount of time online has encountered the dreaded trolls. Many times they're faceless accounts spouting juvenile and puerile insults; other times, they're organized and downright scary--sometimes even inciting deadly violence or self-harm. Who, exactly, are these people? While this book didn't hook me as much as a couple other recent books on the subject of online bully culture, I'm glad it was written and value its insights about online abuse and what could or even should be done about it.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jaclyn Crupi

    This book offers rare insight into the terrifying and troubling world of trolls and online hate. It’s a taxing read and Gorman repeatedly returns to how difficult it was to write. Her research is impressive and my main takeaway is most of the things you assume about trolls and trolling is wrong.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Paul Lockman

    I didn’t have this on my to read list but was in the local library and saw it on the new releases shelf and grabbed it. The author is a journalist and some years ago had innocently published an article about a gay couple raising a child, little did she know that the couple would later be exposed as part of an international paedophile ring and they both received long jail sentences. After the paedophile ring was exposed she received a torrent of vile, vitriolic online abuse, including death threa I didn’t have this on my to read list but was in the local library and saw it on the new releases shelf and grabbed it. The author is a journalist and some years ago had innocently published an article about a gay couple raising a child, little did she know that the couple would later be exposed as part of an international paedophile ring and they both received long jail sentences. After the paedophile ring was exposed she received a torrent of vile, vitriolic online abuse, including death threats. Needless to say, she was very scared and concerned for her own and her family’s safety. This trolling also sparked a curiosity – who are these faceless keyboard warriors, what makes them churn out such hateful venom? She then spent the next five years on research for this book. She spoke with other trolling victims, psychologists, academics, Government agencies and some of the trolls themselves and actually immersed herself in some of the online communities to try and come to some sort of understanding of cyberhate. My thoughts I feel this is a worthwhile contribution to the topic. Some of the important issues raised, albeit relatively briefly: - Are the big tech companies, Facebook, Twitter, Google, Amazon etc too powerful? Is there an argument for breaking up these monopolies? - Newspapers and TV stations are publishers who can be held responsible for false, misleading or malicious content. Can we or should we regard social media companies as publishers in the same vein? - How quickly does Facebook and Twitter respond to requests to remove hate speech and threats? - Is a punitive approach desirable? Pressure from the European Union and its code of conduct has seen a marked improvement in how quickly illegal online hate speech is removed. Germany passed a law that requires social media companies to take down hate speech within twenty-four hours or face the possibility of a 50 million euro fine. - What does the future hold? Will platforms like Facebook and Twitter be retro-fitted and hate speech automatically filtered out, much like junk mail is now? I did feel that the narrative was at times not well structured and overall the book was too journalistic for my liking. I just thought there was far, far too much oxygen and space given to the trolls the author met and not nearly enough time devoted to the other important issues she raised.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mehrsa

    It's an interesting premise that doesn't deliver the goods. It's not an inside look into trolling nor does it offer much in the way of a theory or a psychology of trolling. The interviews with the trolls are interesting I guess, but it seems like books like this just give these idiots a platform to provoke. They have disgusting views and maybe they believe them or maybe they are just trying to "troll" but we feed them by focusing on them like this. I did think her personal experience with online It's an interesting premise that doesn't deliver the goods. It's not an inside look into trolling nor does it offer much in the way of a theory or a psychology of trolling. The interviews with the trolls are interesting I guess, but it seems like books like this just give these idiots a platform to provoke. They have disgusting views and maybe they believe them or maybe they are just trying to "troll" but we feed them by focusing on them like this. I did think her personal experience with online trolling was super interesting and crazy.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

    “Words are a weapon - and a gateway to much greater harm.” In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman became the victim of an online witch hunt when a couple she had interviewed about the success of same sex adoption were arrested three years later on charges of producing and distributing child pornography. She was targeted by hateful tweets, subjected to death threats, doxxed, and threatened by hundreds of largely anonymous trolls. The experience was terrifying, but once the vitriol began to recede, Gorm “Words are a weapon - and a gateway to much greater harm.” In 2013, journalist Ginger Gorman became the victim of an online witch hunt when a couple she had interviewed about the success of same sex adoption were arrested three years later on charges of producing and distributing child pornography. She was targeted by hateful tweets, subjected to death threats, doxxed, and threatened by hundreds of largely anonymous trolls. The experience was terrifying, but once the vitriol began to recede, Gorman became curious about the world of cyber hate and the trolls who fuel it. In Troll Hunting: Inside the World of Online Hate and its Human Fallout, Gorman examines the phenomenon of trolling. The narrative, a mix of subjective and objective detail, research, and opinion, is accessible and fascinating, exploring its causes, and its effects. Gorman’s focus is particularly on those she identifies as predator trolls, whose motives for their actions have little to do with their target, and everything to do with their own narcissistic desire to agitate, offend and degrade. In the hopes of understanding them she spoke with several trolls, even developing a relationship of sorts with a few, and shares her interviews with them. Unlike Gorman I wasn’t surprised to learn that trolls come from all walks of life, though they seem to be overwhelmingly young white males. Some trolls claim their actions are just for the ‘lulz’, others ascribe loftier motives to their behaviour, and then there are those who delight in humiliating and tormenting their targets, sociopaths and sadists for whom the Internet is a endless sea of victims. Few of them are willing to reflect on, admit to, or take responsibility for, the psychological, physical, and economic harm they cause when the anonymity of online discourse affords them the indulgence of socially inappropriate behaviour without consequence. I have never had any doubt that trolling has real word consequences for the victims who become targets, no right-minded person should. Unfortunately it is taking too long for not only the law and law enforcement to recognise the damage it can inflict, and incite, but also many in wider society who still stubbornly reiterate the playground maxim “sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me”, despite evidence to the contrary. I was perhaps expecting a more thorough psychological profile of trolls than is explored in this book, nevertheless Gorman provides important observations about trolling behaviour and motives generally. I agree in part with the conclusions she has drawn about its causes, though I still believe other issues are also significant contributors. Providing valuable and thought provoking insights into the issue of cyberhate and trolling, Troll Hunting is a fascinating and perceptive read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Saskia

    I really enjoyed this book; as someone who is acutely interested in dark internet subcultures, it was definitely a must-read. However, I just wish the analysis had gone a bit further. I don't think the internet itself is to blame for the creation of trolls, and nor is bad parenting to blame, as Gorman posits. Society has created these people, but how, and why, and what those structures are, remained untouched in this book (although I have some theories of my own). All in all, it was an excellent I really enjoyed this book; as someone who is acutely interested in dark internet subcultures, it was definitely a must-read. However, I just wish the analysis had gone a bit further. I don't think the internet itself is to blame for the creation of trolls, and nor is bad parenting to blame, as Gorman posits. Society has created these people, but how, and why, and what those structures are, remained untouched in this book (although I have some theories of my own). All in all, it was an excellent entry-level explanation and examination of trolls - who they are, what they do - but not how they've come to be. Of course, there were definitely some shocking moments, really driving home that /anyone/ with an online voice can become a target of trolls, and lives can be ruined, in a world where the line between reality and pretend is increasingly blurred.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Alys

    An absolutely enthralling read. Engaging from the get go. Well researched and sourced. Ginger Gorman, who has long been an authority on the subject of cyberhate, goes deep into the world of trolls, providing unique insights directly from victims, experts and importantly, trolls themselves. I couldn't put it down, read it from cover to cover in a day.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Edmund

    While light in appearance, the contents of 'troll hunting' are stranger and more disturbing than meets the eye. Gorman is surprisingly open about her trials, both pre-book and during both suffering the impact of trolling and the head-spinning experiencing of researching, even interviewing and forming relationships with trolls. It's hard to capture the nature of the book simply, part biographical, part polemic, part expose the book shines a light on the most sinister troll behaviour, but also adds While light in appearance, the contents of 'troll hunting' are stranger and more disturbing than meets the eye. Gorman is surprisingly open about her trials, both pre-book and during both suffering the impact of trolling and the head-spinning experiencing of researching, even interviewing and forming relationships with trolls. It's hard to capture the nature of the book simply, part biographical, part polemic, part expose the book shines a light on the most sinister troll behaviour, but also adds a human element that surprised me: cases where so called trolls stood up for vulnerable people, supported important issues and revealed themselves to be as human as everyone else. I wouldn't recommend the book for the faint of heart, the sexist (to the point of violence) racist and harsh realities of trolls is difficult to stomach - but the journey contained in troll hunting is insightful, intriguing and eye-opening in equal measure.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Stephie

    A very enthralling and, at times, alarming read. I liked that Gorman could be sympathetic to the trolls, despite how disturbed they might be. I think people are so afraid of trolls that very few are willing to get close enough to understand why they do what they do (just for the lulz, apparently). Kudos to her for that.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Peter Stuart

    So, here's my quandary. How do you review a book about hunting trolls without needing to give it an automatic 5 stars and a cravingly positive review? If you don't, are you indeed on the periphery of, or within, the very realm of the subject of the work ? Can there be such a thing as constructive, personal interpretation and balanced review that is not solely effusive in praise ? Well, lets see. I struggled to engage with the author and the work. I quickly understood, by directly being informed, t So, here's my quandary. How do you review a book about hunting trolls without needing to give it an automatic 5 stars and a cravingly positive review? If you don't, are you indeed on the periphery of, or within, the very realm of the subject of the work ? Can there be such a thing as constructive, personal interpretation and balanced review that is not solely effusive in praise ? Well, lets see. I struggled to engage with the author and the work. I quickly understood, by directly being informed, that the author is a journalist by trade and a feminist. All good, no problem. However I found the iteration and re-iteration of these facts throughout the work tiring and seemingly unnecessary. Perhaps however they were needed to support the authors approach, selected style of writing and methods of relaying the outcomes of her extensive journalistic research. Perhaps they were required to support her all but constant use of fellow female quotations, individual research outcomes, opinions and experiences. Perhaps the approach supports the repeating laser like focus on a specific cohort of trolls to the exclusion of any other group or collective. The author states several times that friends and colleagues recommend she write on this topic due to her personal experiences which are semi explained within the opening section of the work. It is perhaps this external force, journalistic professionalism and the authors personal viewpoints on our world that primarily drove the work. For this reader however a greater sense of breadth and journalistic impartiality would have added immense value. Now these are my observations and hopefully they are taken as such and do not result in me being classed within the realm of the subject...... Or perhaps I missed the point of the authors intention on the structure, framework and planned outcomes.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lynley

    I thought this was going to be more about the psychology of trolls. I'm dubious about how much can really be learned from forming relationships with trolls themselves. The author does go into detail about the effects on her own psychology as she was writing this book, turning it into almost part memoir. The rest covers specific trolling crimes that have happened, and simply reading those is a mission. I skipped a bit of that, having run out of 'spoons', as they say.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Paul Goodman

    I really wanted to get into this because it sounded like a much-needed exploration of this world, and I appreciated the attempt to humanise and understand this dark part of the world. Having said that, the hyperbole and sensationalism was making it unreadable. It's already a serious and dramatic story without loading the prose with melodrama. Couldn't finish.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Well that was a ver educational read that was harrowing in parts but still full of hope. Ginger's passion and extensive research shows through her excellent writing and I highly recommend reading this book if you want to know more about internet trolls, cyber hate and what can be done.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Alison

    Gorman has a very personal connection to this subject. I mean, any female working in the public arena will have some experience of trolling, but Gorman has more than most, being targeted for years by a vicious, semi-organised group. This is how she starts the book, with a discussion about how she got into this. It's very much in line with Gorman's style of journalism - one that embraces the personal connection between journalist and subject, and to some extent, wears it's heart on its sleeve. Whe Gorman has a very personal connection to this subject. I mean, any female working in the public arena will have some experience of trolling, but Gorman has more than most, being targeted for years by a vicious, semi-organised group. This is how she starts the book, with a discussion about how she got into this. It's very much in line with Gorman's style of journalism - one that embraces the personal connection between journalist and subject, and to some extent, wears it's heart on its sleeve. When this works well, as in the interview with Carly Findlay, or in discussing the impact on her own family of her engagement with trolls, it can be very powerful. Gorman conveys a sense of journalism without boundaries, and excels at asking questions and developing complex empathy. However, this for me never overcame a lack of analysis pulling the book together. "Troll' is a concept I found needed unpacking, covering a range of different online behaviours with differing motivations and effects. I did feel that an approach such as that taken in Crash Override, where dynamics of online shaming, abuse, harassment and violence are unpacked would have been helpful. Gorman takes a scattershot approach to discussing themes, exploring dynamics but not in a systematic way. So, for example, she starts be iterating that trolls can come from any shade of the political spectrum. Far-right activists like weev are thrown around interchangeably with the dynamics of vigilante hacker groups like Anonymous. This approach did not focus attention on the problem at the heart of Australian discourse at the moment - the effect of intimidation on women of colour attempting to enter the public sphere. This is explicitly raised at several points by her interviewees (and reported by Gorman in the book obviously), including a Guardian editor who points out that Van Badham, interviewed by Gorman, is the only white commentator suffering the kind of attacks which are routine for women of colour; and the SBS Insight producer, who explains the program struggles to get guests because of the reluctance of non-white women to front up for abuse on an unprecedented scale. Gorman also quotes Amnesty International's Toxic Twitter report, which identifies women of colour, LGBTI, gender non-conforming and women with disabilities as the target of most attacks. Gorman did attempt to get an interview with Mariam Veiszadeh, and reprints email correspondence. Still, the scattered nature of this content means the message - of how systematic racist abuse of women is serving to change our political landscape - needed more attention. Especially given the presence of a chapter headed "White women are cancer" which features a debate between Gorman and a troll about white women specifically.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Katie (wife of book)

    I often read books about dark subject, or with bleak storylines, but this was the first time I needed to put a book down and take a break from it for a while (instead of reading it in huge gulps). Troll Hunting deals with the world of cyberhate and it's a dark topic that touches all our lives. Gorman is obviously an excellent journalist and a talented writer. This book is full of fascinating information and insights, and very well referenced, but it reads smoothly and is not dry. She deals with a I often read books about dark subject, or with bleak storylines, but this was the first time I needed to put a book down and take a break from it for a while (instead of reading it in huge gulps). Troll Hunting deals with the world of cyberhate and it's a dark topic that touches all our lives. Gorman is obviously an excellent journalist and a talented writer. This book is full of fascinating information and insights, and very well referenced, but it reads smoothly and is not dry. She deals with all sorts of issues surrounding trolls and their actions, and she reminds us that not all trolls can be dismissed as being losers in their parents' basement. She gives examples of the loner-type trolls that fit our stereotypes, but she also speaks to trolls who are "normal": girlfriend, house, normal job. Think of the Black Mirror episode Hated in the Nation and the people who we see use #deathto. We are shown how much online abuse can affect real life-many victims of trolling are told to just stay offline but in 2019 that is not possible. So many of us are online for work and socialising that avoiding it due to trolling can have a huge detrimental impact. Gorman uses various examples and case studies to show the damage trolls can do, she even uses herself as an example and tells the reader how delving into the world of trolls has affected her. This book is a great read (despite the dark topic) and I'd recommend for anyone interested in the darker side of our tech-heavy society.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Cat

    This whole book did two major things for me. It changed how I view and react to the internet as a landscape, and it gave a face to a faceless entity. I don't think I can leave a long review for this book because once I start digging into everything I want to dig into I won't be able to stop. I greatly appreciated the author's self-reflexivity. She stops and examines her own reactions and theories about the people she's writing about fairly often, which as the book goes on seems both necessary and This whole book did two major things for me. It changed how I view and react to the internet as a landscape, and it gave a face to a faceless entity. I don't think I can leave a long review for this book because once I start digging into everything I want to dig into I won't be able to stop. I greatly appreciated the author's self-reflexivity. She stops and examines her own reactions and theories about the people she's writing about fairly often, which as the book goes on seems both necessary and totally understandable. Her willingness to question herself is admirable, and gave me a bar to pass as a writer who wants to pursue journalism. There was a solid balance in her work between having a moral standard that she stuck to in bizarre and challenging circumstances, and having the ability to doubt her own conclusions and search relentlessly for evidence, alternative answers, and disparate viewpoints. This is one of very few books about trolling that exists, and after reading it, I hope more people are inspired to research and learn more about online trolling, what causes it and how to deal with it on all levels, especially legislative, technical and personal.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Corey

    It feels like this book has been rushed through to capitalise on interest in cyberhate in the wake of the Christchurch shootings because, while most of it is good (and in some parts it is utterly rivetting), parts of it should have been left on the cutting room floor. I'd say 80% of the book is worthwhile and 20% should have been edited out. Gorman's strength is recounting specific events, and parts of this book read like a well-constructed crime thriller. Her weakness is commentary, where some It feels like this book has been rushed through to capitalise on interest in cyberhate in the wake of the Christchurch shootings because, while most of it is good (and in some parts it is utterly rivetting), parts of it should have been left on the cutting room floor. I'd say 80% of the book is worthwhile and 20% should have been edited out. Gorman's strength is recounting specific events, and parts of this book read like a well-constructed crime thriller. Her weakness is commentary, where some of her insights fall flat, and she has a tendency to over-do the citing of statistics and the quoting of experts when the points she's making are pretty self-evident and don't require corroboration. Indeed, it often feels like the author has done a lot of research and has thus felt the need to include all of the research in the text, where a stronger hand at the editing end might have sacrificed some of the unnecessary parts for a much stronger whole. Nonetheless, it's an interesting read that sheds light on trolls, their victims, the nature of the internet and its effect upon society.

  24. 4 out of 5

    S.C. Karakaltsas

    I feel as if I’ve lived under a rock. The revelations this book unfolded for me were not only eye-opening but positively scary. According to the book's blurb, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled in 2013. After doing a story she received hateful tweets, including a death threat, and a picture of her, her husband, and daughter appeared on a fascist website. Although terrifying, she began questioning who the trolls were and why they did what they did. So began her incredibly insightful investigati I feel as if I’ve lived under a rock. The revelations this book unfolded for me were not only eye-opening but positively scary. According to the book's blurb, journalist Ginger Gorman was trolled in 2013. After doing a story she received hateful tweets, including a death threat, and a picture of her, her husband, and daughter appeared on a fascist website. Although terrifying, she began questioning who the trolls were and why they did what they did. So began her incredibly insightful investigation into another world, a world of cyberhate, cyber-crime and a community of faceless trolls. Gorman talks to a realm of professionals including psychologists, academics, law enforcement agencies, victims as well as the trolls themselves. The motivation behind the troll’s activities is wide-reaching from causing mischief for fun to disturbance, disruption to individual lives or in the wider arena of political spheres. Sometimes their activities have catastrophic consequences. Gorman dips deep to get into the psyche of a troll’s mindset and one troll admitted that when he was eleven he was on the internet playing pranks for hours. “in other words: the internet was my parent.” The troll in question agrees with Gorman’s observation that for some young people, radicalisation into trolling begins at a young age. The trolls' backgrounds are varied. There are the women haters, terrorists, ultra-right wingers, and left-wingers, to categorise a few. But mostly they’re men often holding down ordinary jobs, and educated too. It's naive to think that people like this haven't been around for years and years. But the difference here is anonymity in a different dimension. It makes you think about your own online behaviour. Like yelling in the car at the mistake someone’s made on the road, our road rage is often hidden safely behind the confines of the vehicle. Online, does anyone really know who we are? And words can hurt far more than anyone realises. 'There’s good evidence to show dehumanising speech can lead to sticks and stones. … numerous academic studies … show dehumanisation is ‘associated with an increased willingness to perpetrate violence.' It’s a hard read with each turn of the page revealing something more disturbing than before. Yet so compelling is it, you find yourself fascinated. I almost reached for my social media apps to delete them all. And that is a real reaction as we wonder how safe we are in the online world. This book would have been incredibly difficult to write. The depths of Gorman’s own anguish shows through and as a reader, I was right there with her. Trolling can destroy lives and although some have gone to jail, the law enforcement agencies don’t appear to have fully caught up with this epidemic activity, and that’s scary. I’m in awe of this author’s bravery to have not only conducted incredible research but possibly put herself and her family into danger, physically and mentally. Yes, it’s an eye-opener and if you’re on social media it would be wise to check this book out.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    1) first off. This book is heavy af. 2) i don't think there's anything new here, per say. That being said. 1) the deep dive gorman does into the world of trolling is both fascinating and terrifying. These (mostly) young white dudes are a scary, listless lot. Gorman contends that they are a product of being parented by the interwebs. But what she fails to realize here is that young white men have ALWAYS been a scary, listless lot. (Yeah yeah, not all young white dudes. I know.) The difference now i 1) first off. This book is heavy af. 2) i don't think there's anything new here, per say. That being said. 1) the deep dive gorman does into the world of trolling is both fascinating and terrifying. These (mostly) young white dudes are a scary, listless lot. Gorman contends that they are a product of being parented by the interwebs. But what she fails to realize here is that young white men have ALWAYS been a scary, listless lot. (Yeah yeah, not all young white dudes. I know.) The difference now is that they have a platform. A wide open, wild, unregulated platform that gives these AWD (angry white dudes) a place to spew forth the hatred and rhetoric that works to disenfranchise women and minorities. The crux of it is we are at a tipping point. White dudes have to move the fuck over. Others are rising. And they (yes, i know, not all) don't want this. (Plese Note: I am a firm believer that a rising tide lifts all boats. And no way do i think that by others rising that white men will lose power.) I do think that this idea wasn't explored because holy shit, this is heavy enough without it. Gorman's deep dive with famous assholes, I mean, trolls was intense. She is incredibly brave putting herself in that kind of position. Hell, I am afraid to write this review b/c who the hell knows who is going to read it? I actually might make my GR profile private just in case. And that folks is being an opinionated woman on the internet. It. Isn't. A. Safe. Place. To. Be. Gorman knows this and so do i.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Grant

    A fantastic read that helps give insight into the lives of online trolls, why they do what they do and how to deal with them.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    Would give it a 3.5. Interesting and well written but not to be read when you are feeling dark.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Smith

    Well-researched, thought-provoking glimpse into the murky world of online trolls.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rosalie

    Ginger Gorman began investigating cyberhate after she was viciously trolled in 2013. Two years earlier she had published an article concerning the discrimination experienced by some minority groups in Far North Queensland and in order to research her topic, had put out a request within the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community asking for people to come forward with their stories. Two of the men who were featured in her article, were a gay couple who agreed to be interviewed in their h Ginger Gorman began investigating cyberhate after she was viciously trolled in 2013. Two years earlier she had published an article concerning the discrimination experienced by some minority groups in Far North Queensland and in order to research her topic, had put out a request within the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community asking for people to come forward with their stories. Two of the men who were featured in her article, were a gay couple who agreed to be interviewed in their home with their five-year-old son. Gorman’s life changed dramatically in 2015 when the two men, Mark Newton and Peter Truong were imprisoned after pleading guilty to conspiring to sexually exploit a child and for conspiring to possess child pornography. Ginger Gorman’s article was recirculated by trolls and used to humiliate and abuse her by insinuating she supported the exploitation of children. Troll Hunting narrates Gorman’s tightrope walk as she and her family suffer the horrendous repercussions of constant trolling and how she managed to endure it and move forward. Her decision to investigate the trolls was not made recklessly and the investigation put even more strain on herself, her partner and their relationship but the subsequent book is absolutely riveting and amazing. In Troll Hunting Gorman divides her book into three sections that focus on firstly describing what is trolling, secondly the targets who are trolled, and thirdly the trolls themselves who she tracks down and interviews. Trolling is nearly as old as the internet - the word troll was used in the late 1980’s to describe someone who was intentionally disruptive, yet during this century it has morphed from caustic taunting to outright hate speech, violent threats and even doxing (when a target’s private contacts and home address maybe disseminated by the trolls). The book comes across as brutally honest because Gorman reflects on her dubious role as researcher who finds herself “liking” some of the trolls with whom she communicates over a long time. As she says “When you’re on line you are only the inside of you…the trappings of the outside world fall away…maybe that’s why trolls form close bonds with each other”…And “gets into the world of the trolls and some of the boundaries are blurred…”how can you as a journalist hold someone to account when you have erased the perimeters?” The section on Targets is illuminating and disturbing from a woman’s point of view because of the vast number of online misogynists who target any woman who has a high profile especially media personalities, politicians and/or any woman who regularly comment on social media platforms. Men are also the victims of trolls but sexual harassment and stalking is highest against women. The worst aspect is also the notion that ‘she was asking for it’ and that if they want it to stop being abused they should get off line – which is not a useful consequence if your employment is dependent on your social media presence. Gorman discusses how the harassment effected several women including Vanessa "Van" Badham whose suffered relentless toxic trolling and stalking and was forced to move house. Van Badham has been attacked from the left and right, but essentially the trolls resent their perceived powerlessness which serves to increase their hatred. Van Badham since writing for the Guardian, thinks that her attackers are threatened and scared because she is discussing topics such as economics and industrial relations etc that were traditionally male concerns. Nevertheless, the abuse directed at her is obscene and out of proportion. Sherele Moody, a journalist and founder of the Red Heart Campaign is the target of relentless misogynistic and homophobic predator trolling. The online attacks have been sexual and show an underlying hatred of women. Her property has been invaded, her Great Dane poisoned with acid and her horse stolen and killed. Gorman also included a male target who was a school teacher who hated the racism that was escalating in the early 2000s. After creating an anti-racism blog he was relentlessly targeted, his home address was located as was his mother’s. Fake profiles were created on Facebook and he was accused of being a paedophile. His abuse and harassment continued for over 10 years and his life was effectively destroyed. The other frustrating aspect about online abuse is the apparent ineffectiveness of the law enforcement bodies in Australia to protect the targets of abuse without putting the onus back on the victim to avoid being online. Nevertheless “there have been instances…when requests to remove posts from social media have been declined by Facebook on the grounds that Facebook did not believe the material published on the page breached community standards”, thus the Australian police and community are at the mercy of overseas based companies. The section ‘Hunting Predator Trolls’ analyses different trolls and their motives and reads like a detective novel/thriller as Gorman relates her associations with the troll hunter Luke McMahon, another target - the lawyer Josh Bornstein and her troll “advisor” Meepsheep. Gorman exposes many contradictions and grey areas about internet trolls such as the idea of ‘free speech’. The troll MoonMetroplolis – was adamant “that free speech was his thing” and gave him the right to say whatever he wanted but he could not see the irony that his actions could result in the liberties of others being impeded. ‘Media Fuckery’ is another favourite tactic of trolls and may include inventing news and paying for social media ads was – for example Russian trolls bought Facebook and Instagram ads during the 2016 US elections which aimed to sow discord and division peddling messages, the ads were anti-Clinton, anti-Muslim, anti-immigration. The trolling is not done just by one person but groups of people who call themselves a syndicate such as GNAA (Gay Nigger Association Of America) who have “elected office bearers and a president. Meepsheep is the president of GNAA and tells her that “young white men are struggling as they are falling behind socially and economically, they are at risk of isolation and disenfranchisement. …The alternative-right point of view is to blame all women for their problems…Trolls manifest their hurt and anger in a different way." The young trolls often bond online and this bonding can create a sense of collective power so that they can get back at the world. The groups deliberately use words like ‘nigger’ ‘fag’ and symbols like swastikas as they are sure to offend, then those who react with outrage will become the next targets. They will disparage their detractors as being those who ‘can’t take a joke’ as they see themselves as harmless pranksters and the idea that words can harm is objectionable to them. Thus trolls won’t accept that words might incite because they are not forcing people to take actions "off line” However it can be seen that dehumanisation is associated with “an increased willingness to perpetrate violence”. This book is certainly thought provoking.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ian Lambert

    4.5 stars, though I can't think exactly what would make it better. Gorman has been through a harrowing time to write this book and there could be no better time than now for a New Zealander to read it. Anyone who has some vague ideas about the mindset of the perpetrator responsible for the recent horror in Christchurch will find this interesting. There ought to be an intense, non-partisan, public debate about the role of social media in our society and the ways in which it at the very least faci 4.5 stars, though I can't think exactly what would make it better. Gorman has been through a harrowing time to write this book and there could be no better time than now for a New Zealander to read it. Anyone who has some vague ideas about the mindset of the perpetrator responsible for the recent horror in Christchurch will find this interesting. There ought to be an intense, non-partisan, public debate about the role of social media in our society and the ways in which it at the very least facilitates serious personal damage , especially to vulnerable people, through unregulated postings. The ability of ISIS to publish deeply offensive material, the proliferation of chatrooms dedicated to vile world views and hate speech plus the trolling of individuals by apparently amoral and anonymous internet users all require close examination and discussion so that something may be done to at least limit the damage. The uploading of real-time video from Christchurch and the sharing of such video should not be possible and filthy rich companies like Facebook need to spend some money and change their business models. Gorman has done us all a favour by giving us some uncomfortable insight into what's going on. Read this book!! Thankyou Ginger Gorman.

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