Monday, March 7, 2011

How to Troll - To mimic or not to mimic

Here I'll make a somewhat specious suggestion for beginning the fine art of trolling: choose a template to follow in your procession through the intertubes. The best examples of trolling are XL's infamous post and some of Brucelovely's old posts alongside Metro's "Give Illidan Glaive Throw" of yore (all faded into non existence since the forum rolls over every 2 years or so). I never directly ripped off anyone's posting habits but I did try to find a way to post within the confines of their system. Of course you don't want to write something exactly like another would or it would defeat the purpose of trolling, surely they are superior at it and needn't be troubled with those who follow. Firejoemorgan, that wondrous sports troll land, was perfectly fine on its own and basically never needed anyone to follow their very easy method of humor, though now that they're gone you sort of wish someone funny would start doing it again.

In some regard you tend to realize that by reading others you are increasing your own acumen, and this is also quite true of trolling, browse various forums and determine whether something is funny or merely deemed funny by the confederacy of dunces. Obviously larger forums are more likely to actually have funny people present as opposed to a small forum which has the problem of too many people agreeing with each other and violently disagreeing with anyone else. In some regard the Warhammer forum was actually like this, though not entirely and more often than not they agreed with me so it sort of worked out in the end, but I do try to actually be funny from an objective standpoint instead of just pleasing a crowd that already likes me.

This is a well known issue with comedians as well, they are actually funny for a while but eventually going with the same old conservative jokes draws better crowds and ratings than continuing to "push the envelope," it's why Dave Chapelle stopped doing his show and it's why everyone hates Jay Leno for being a "sell-out." Of course, Leno still demolishes Letterman in the ratings even with all the NBC scandals, and the internal comedic train of thought is ultimately irrelevant to the comedic capitalist. Still, I have my pride for sticking with lost causes and so we stick with being humorous instead of pleasing the crowd. Frank Caliendo is another stellar example of continuously stale comedy, while his impressions are funny the first few times the 30th and 40th times you hear them get to be just a tad tiresome.

It's difficult enough as is trying to be funny, use others' previous efforts to your own advantage and improve your knowledge of the trolling fields. Eventually just by sheer practice you may troll well without even thinking about it, and that is generally when the funniest random stuff comes out. While it is easy for me to make someone look like an idiot I still have a grand challenge in improving upon comedic methods and actually attempting to be funny. Though I do recommend sticking with one or the other it's nice to know that you'll eventually be able to do both somewhat well. Remember your training, Leonardo's here with you. I am the best extractor.

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