I have learned that there are two certainties when it comes to Facebook:

  • Where there are people posting about their lives, there are going to be trolls, jerks, and meanie-face-poo-poo pants who will come out of the woodwork to do their awful thing.
  • Where one of them gets blocked or eradicated, another will always rise in his (or quite often her) place.

Before I get started on it though, let’s make sure that we’re all using the same definition of Internet Troll…

Here is the Wiki definition: “In Internet slang, a troll is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in online… with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion, often for their own amusement.

And here is a much more enjoyable definition from Urban Dictionary: “Freaking assholes who try to piss you off… They’re really annoying and will keep you going back and forth for HOURS!”

Anyway, this isn’t 1993. We all have had the Internet long enough to know what an Internet Troll’s comments look like. But did you know, and I really believe this, that there are many trolls (especially on Facebook) who don’t know they’re trolls at all?

Yes, there are the true trolls who just get a serious kick out of commenting terrible things and getting reactions; they aren’t hard to spot and block. But there is a much more common kind of troll, too. I call them “Facebook Troll Dolls.” And I hope you’re not one of them, but the truth is you just might be one.

To assure yourself that you’re not, simply make sure you don’t fit any of these criteria (all based on 100% real and recent interactions I’ve seen on Facebook). If you do fit them, guess what. You’re a Facebook Troll Doll. And you need to go sit in Facebook purgatory for a while and think about things, then come back when you’re ready to be a better human.

9 Definite Signs You’re a Facebook Troll (Doll)

1You may be a Harsh Truth Troll if…

You feel that the harsh truth must be shared about anything you see on Facebook, no matter what.

Example: A Facebook friend posts a link to a song cover on YouTube that she really liked. You respond by publicly telling her it is the worst take on that song you’ve ever heard; it’s too draggy; and it sounds like the person singing it was on Quaaludes.

Guess what: She doesn’t care that you hated it. Nobody else who reads your comment cares that you hated it. She (and they) were too busy being positive and finding things in the world they liked. So keep it to yourself.

2You may be a Good Guy Troll if…

You feel that when you do share your harsh opinion, you’re the good guy.

Example: A Facebook friend excitedly tells everyone how excited she is to move-in with the love of her life after two years of dating. You respond by publicly telling her it’s not a good idea, and by the way, here are links to two different articles proving how shacking up will destroy their relationship in the long run.

Guess what: You posting that will not stop her from moving in with the love of her life. It will, however, make her like you (a lot) less. It will also make anyone who reads your comment like you a lot less. I know you expected the self-righteous moral few to have your back, but those who agree are actually quite embarrassed by your actions and inability to stay out of other people’s business.

3You may be a Right Way Troll if…

You believe there is only one right way to do most everything, and you are “passionate” about helping other people know what the right way is.

Example: A Facebook friend posts a link to a video showing an amazing way she discovered to pack a week’s worth of healthy lunches for her kids. You respond by publicly telling her the pitfalls of that plan, making sure she knows she’ll soon grow tired of doing it that way, and also telling her of a different way you tried that backs up all of your opinions.

Guess what: {GASP!} There is more than one right way to do a lot of things. And unless you’re going to buy the food, go to her house, and pack those lunches for her kids every week, get off your high horse and let her be excited about something she’s excited about!

4You may be a Text Blamer Troll if…

You constantly blame people getting upset on your text not reading the same way you would sound if you said it in person.

Example: A Facebook friend posts a selfie showing his fitness progress, announcing that he’s excited about the results he is finally seeing after so much work. You respond by publicly telling him he sounds pretentious and self-absorbed. When he (and others) call you out on it, you reply “LOL, this is proof we need a sarcasm font.”

Guess what: Everyone just rolls their eyes behind their computer screens because the truth is you were just being a jerk, and they don’t want to get into it with you. Oh, and just a heads-up… Most people who read your comment also probably think you are insecure or jealous.

5You may be a Knee-Jerk Reactor Troll if…

You leave knee-jerk comments to titles of links on your feed without actually following the link first.

Example: You see a Facebook link from a fabulously sexy bearded blogger with the title “I gotta say, you never looked so sexy.” The image accompanying the link features said fabulously sexy bearded blogger smiling. You respond by publicly telling him that he is too full of himself, he’s not that sexy, and you would never date him.

Guess what:
Had you actually followed the link, you’d have realized it was a letter to the year 2016. Had you grasped this, you may have thought it was clever or uplifting. You probably still would have had a need to tell him he’s not sexy and you wouldn’t date him, but hey. You just can’t control yourself (refer back to #1).

6You may be a Stupidville Troll if…

You find yourself constantly using any of the following phrases online:

Phrases: “That is just ridiculous.”
“How stupid can some people be?!”
“This conversation just makes me so mad.”
“Why the heck can’t people just see that…”
“I want to shoot myself in the face right now.”
“Did you fall asleep on the Dum Dum Bus and wake up in Stupidville?”

Guess what: All of those phrases mean only one thing. Trollville. Yep. They all declare two underlying sentiments: “I am smarter than everyone in the world!” and “I need the world to recognize that!” Oh, don’t worry. The world recognizes you when you say stuff like that. They recognize you as someone they don’t want to see more of in their lives (or feeds).

7You may be a Sorry But Troll if…

You find yourself constantly using this one single phrase on Facebook: “I’m sorry, but…”

Example: A Facebook friend posts a status update with a selfie and says, “just because I feel pretty today.” You respond by publicly telling her, “I’m sorry, but what is the point of this except to make everyone look at you? Just be you and don’t try so hard. It’s not becoming.” (Yes, that is an actual quote I pulled off an actual friend’s post; a friend who I happen to know struggles with self-esteem already).

Guess what: You’re kind of an awful human. Any time you start a phrase with “I’m sorry, but…” you are simply saying, “So… I’m about to say something really offensive and terrible, and it will hurt your feelings, but you can’t be mad or get offended because I started off with an apology.”

8You may be a Misunderstood Troll if…

You often have end Facebook threads with, “nobody seems to get me.”

Example: A Facebook friend posts something. Anything. You respond in any of the ways mentioned above. The Facebook friend gets (rightfully) offended. Other people get (rightfully) offended on behalf of the Facebook friend. And you get… frustrated. You argue your point. And you tell everyone why you’re right. And when everyone still thinks you’re a jerk, you brush it all off as everyone else’s fault by saying, “nobody seems to get me.”

Guess what: You are 100% right. The rest of us don’t get you. We don’t get your strange intrinsic need to be contentious, or bring others down, or put others in their place. We don’t get the way you look at life or other humans. If you don’t get that, then maybe try being a smidge bit more positive and see if people get you a smidge bit more.

9You may be an Unfairly Labeled Troll if…

You get angry as you read articles like this because you feel like you’re being unfairly labeled.

Example: That same fabulously sexy bearded blogger from above writes a blog post just like this one. And he shares it. And you read it. And you can barely make it to the end because it ticks you off and makes you feel like you’re being labeled unfairly. You may even huff and puff things at your screen like, “what does he know?!” or “how stupid can some people be?” or “people just don’t get me!” Then you may even comment on the blog post something like, “I’m sorry but…”

Guess what: I don’t care. You’re a Facebook Troll (Doll). Be a better human and stop hiding behind the perceived anonymity of the Internet.

Most of you will not fit those criteria. Some of you will. If you do, there is good news! It’s not too late for you! Go here to get started on your path to Mega-Awesome-Human.

Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing

PS. I am 100% all for everyone sharing this post in a beautifully passive-agressive way any time you encounter a Facebook Troll Doll. In the mean time, just sharing it on your wall might help get things shifting in the right direction for some. Just don’t be surprised when #9 happens on your post…

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Dan Pearce is an American-born author, app developer, photographer, and artist. This blog, Single Dad Laughing, is what he's most known for, with more than 1.4 million daily subscribers as of 2017. Pearce writes mostly humorous and introspective works, as well as his musings which span from fatherhood, to dating, to life, to the people and dynamics of society. Single Dad Laughing is much more than a blog. It's an incredible community of people just being real and awesome together!