Sunday, April 13, 2008

Badd Apple Meets Cyberbully

I don't like bullies, never have, never will. And I believe in standing up to them. It's been my experience that the bully you ignore will continue to harass; the bully you face will look for an easier person to bully. You'd think that once we grow up, that the schoolyard bullies would, too, but they have a way of growing into adult bodies, but not losing their bullying ways. They are everywhere, including on the Internet.
From Wikipedia:
Characteristics of bullies
Research indicates that adults who bully have personalities that are authoritarian, combined with a strong need to control or dominate. It has also been suggested that a deficit in social skills and a prejudicial view of subordinates can be particular risk factors.
Further studies have shown that while envy and resentment may be motives for bullying, there is little evidence to suggest that bullies suffer from any deficit in self esteem (as this would make it difficult to bully). However, bullying can also be used as a tool to conceal and boost self esteem: by demeaning others, the abuser himself feels empowered.
Researchers have identified other risk factors such as quickness to anger and use of force, addiction to aggressive behaviors, mistaking others' actions as hostile, concern with preserving self image, and engaging in obsessive or rigid actions.

Like dragons, bullies are self-centered, solitary, greedy creatures, kings  and queens of their own mounds, unwilling to share, demanding loyalty and deference from those they deem to be lower than themselves, and in return for all this, they may not eat you . . . if you are lucky.

From Wikipedia,
According to Canadian educator Bill Belsey, it involves the use of information and communication technologies such as e-mail, cell phone and pager text messages, instant messaging, defamatory personal Web sites, blogs, online games and defamatory online personal polling Web sites, to support deliberate, repeated, and hostile behaviour by an individual or group, that is intended to harm others.
—Cyberbullying: An Emerging Threat to the Always On Generation

I've just been banned from a forum by the owner who yesterday posted a thread in which she claimed that two rival forums were sending out trojans (Trojan: A program that appears legitimate, but performs some illicit activity when run. ) and warning her members not to visit the two sites.

word has it that 2 paranormal sites on the internet are sending out trojans from their site, and indeed i clicked on one of these sites, and my antivirus immediately flagged and killed a trojan....the 2 sites in question are...*here she named two websites* beware if you visit those sites regularly... great way to encourage people to visit your site....not... I am not even going to provide the links for you guys cuz it might encourage you guys to click on it and if you really want a trojan to attack your will have to find these sites i am not linked to them.....and for a good reason now...

Her unhappiness with me surely stems from my asking whether she had notified the owner of the site, my insistence that the owners of both named forums be notified and asking for more details of her experience. Well, apparently that just isn't the done thing. She was clearly only interested in trying to get a rumor mill going to discourage people from visiting those sites. I got in the way.

*NEWSFLASH* There are no trojans or viruses at the other sites. This was simply an effort to defame two sites with which she is in competition and her action fits the definition of cyber bullying listed above.

Another characteristic of bullies is that they blame their victims. After slandering these two sites, she took objection when the owner of one managed to get into her site long enough to lodge a protest. Here is the bully's response to the owner's complaint. This is just a snippet, by the way. She rambled on a bit. I swear, I haven't changed so much as a comma.

Here is the lowdown....NOT everyone likes you, NOT everyone will like CAN'T MAKE people like you......them is the facts....
so why dont you just take a valium, gather up the 16 different personalities in your head, and move on..... You put so much negative energy out there by attacking anyone and everyone who says something about you....its no wonder you are gettin it all back. in spades....
quit trying to police the internet, tracking down people who don't like you. Just avoid them
maybe if you put all that pent up frustration into your website, you would have more than just the ABC's of this, that and the other to offer people
Some information on the paranormal might not go amiss... But if you just carry on gossipping and slandering people....well....I said it will only get that back.

Now, if that isn't crazy, I don't know what is. She used gossip to slander this woman's website and then turned around and accused her of "gossipping and slandering." And all that other stuff in the middle, absolutely out there. I hope she was standing in front of a mirror, because this is a talk she should be having with herself, not throwing at other people who would have been ignoring her if she hadn't targeted them. Wow. For what I really think, check out this list: HERE.

And then she closed and locked the thread with,

and now that all that is said...and it being MY forum....I shall have the last word....
this topic is locked....and you and police woman judy are banned.
Can't say its been nice knowing either of ya...

Queen of the mound, acid drooling, sounds like a dragon to me. I got to be the police woman! w00t! In other words, I drug her deed, done in secret, visible only to her minions, out of the dragon's lair and into the light of day where everyone can see it. Badd, badd apple. I'm not going to identify any of these forums or the author of the malicious posts. But, if you see that thread or similar unfounded accusations being made against a competitor's website, tread carefully. Dragons are dangerous creatures. 

If you are a reasonable person who expects better behavior from adults, join the crowd. There are many forums on the Internet and room for them all. They are all different: different styles, different members, different topics, and different owners. Take your pick. Don't let the watchdogs, who gave this bully five bones, tell you what sites to like. Remember, you're good enough, you're smart enough, and Badd Apple likes you, but watch out for hot and heavy breathing on the back of your neck. You, too, could be come the target of a hungry dragon.


  1. if anyone is interested in viewing the complete version of the article posted here....meaning...not the creatively edited version put forth in this blog...then visit the link below...the topic is still open as others wanted to add to it.

  2. For the record, I have not edited anything. The quotes in this thread were copied and pasted AS IS, exactly as "Sara" wrote and posted in her forum. I'll leave it to you, intelligent readers, to decide what to make of them. If Sara's kick-ass style appeals to you, by all means join her forum. Birds of a feather flock together. Go where you feel comfortable.

    Sara, who has now identified herself, is the owner of Isle of Wight Ghosthunterz forum, to which SHE has directed you.

    For the record, she claimed two active and thriving forums, whose owners swear they are and have always been trojan and virus-free, as "sending out trojans." She made no attempt to let the owners know that there was a problem. Her description of how she was attacked by a trojan upon going to the portal (entry page) of one forum does not fit the way trojans are transmitted. It's hard to see this in any other light other than a deliberate attack, a total fabrication and a ploy to detract visitors from their sites and attract them to her own.

    I have a copy of the original thread, the kind that cannot be edited, because it is a picture of the post. If you don't feel comfortable going to Sara's link or would like to have a copy of the original to compare to whatever is now there, e-mail me and I'll forward it to you.

    Just click on my Profile for the e-mail link.

    Best wishes,

  3. Oh.h.h.h. You have to register to read the forums. Bummer. But I noticed a few familiar names.

    And I really like your new moniker: Police Woman Judy. You and Angie Dickinson.

    I didn't read the thread, obviously, since I'm not a member of that board, but I would think the reasonable thing would have been to notify the two site owners thought to have Trojans. (I'm sorry, I just got the most bizarre mental picture of two site owners handing out condoms. I couldn't even type Trojans with a straight face. But I did get a nice glimpse of Brad Pitt's face for just an instant...and his a short leather skirt.)

    Back to topic: As we've recently discussed, there's nothing wrong with making mistakes. However, I would certainly want to avoid making unsubstantiated claims, which, in my opinion, would be a completely avoidable mistake. That is, if the whole thing was a misunderstanding to start with. Otherwise, the reaction is not surprising.

    It's a shame. Camaraderie is a good thing.

  4. I find it interesting that the link 'sara' put up is a bit bogus. I'm new to all this, and thought I might go and see what the big hooha is about. They're not taking 'new members' right now - isn't that how a forum survives? Members new and old? Odd choice of post then sara.

    Good on you Badd Apple for bringing this to light. It's really disappointing to note that there are aggressive and immature individuals out there that call themselves 'ghost specialists', where in actual fact they are threatened by new forums that are friendly and more informative.

    Forum fighting is for children. Let the children have their bullying and tactics and leave the adults to discuss the grown-up subjects. Afterall, aren't children afraid of ghosts?

  5. Thanks for your comments. I've been told by another source, who has many years of experiencing managing forums, that he has seen this sort of thing before, where struggling forums try to get bad rumors going about other forums who are doing better than they are.

    As you say, fluffpot, the best new forums are friendly and open. I'm getting a sense that there are two kinds out there, the open ones that were created as a way to reach OUT to the world, and the closed ones, whose aim is to draw people IN, like one of those rat traps with a one-way entrance and NO EXIT.

    The internet forum experience should be fun and informative and people should feel free to move around and network without all the childishness.

    KAG, very funny as usual. I totally missed that one.

  6. Well, I myself wouldn't have bothered, with the whole 'living well is the best blah blah blah revenge of sorts', but it looks like the dragons den bottomed out and is no more, at least in this incarnation. So.. that stuff will wind up being it's own downfall in the end. Bookmarking your blog, hope to cross paths sometime.