Man. This has been a heated tourney so far. We’ve had two debaters taken out on stretchers so far and another suffered a viscious papercut from what I’m being told. TheBigShowAtUD, saintvi, and seedsower have all done fantastic jobs hosting so far. Here is my second of two first round debates.
I bring you now a battle between the 4 Seed and the 13 Seed. The topic-
Are trolls good for xanga?
We’ve had 1 upset already. Will 13 be lucky? Read and let me know which seed had the stronger argument. Please keep in mind that we are voting on who had the more well structured argument and not which stance you agree with. The participants were not allowed to choose their topics or which side they were arguing.
4 Seed (Pro) – Trolls encourage solidarity and a sense of protective cohesion amongst Xanga; as much as trolls are hateful and detrimental to a constructive blogging atmosphere, commentors also bond over a sense of outrage at one of their own being personally attacked, often without provocation. In this way, trolls encourage blogging solidarity in a way that surpasses kind words and friendships – when faced with malicious trolls, we protect our own. In addition, trolls also encourage us to critique one another by pointing out the sort of logical fallacies most people are willing to overlook from a blogger. Trolls are the first to point out hypocrisy in a blogger, and a self-aware writer will recognize this and amend their views as such. While I don’t deny they are a nuisance, trolls do serve their necessary purpose.
13 Seed (Con) – In this orchestra, we all have a part—- Xangan at the conductor’s stand, commenters at the violin, and friends at the drums— all together, we play the music of an entry’s intent and its ideas.
Trolls jack up their own noise— maybe Garth Brooks, maybe Flavor Flav— however it is, Trolls don’t belong.
By refusing to play the part, they hijack the symphony. In vigorous pounding, trolls hurt feelings. They take our precious time and finite attention away from someone more deserving, someone more substantive, and someone nicer.
On balance, Trolls are bad for music: Trolls are bad for Xanga.
4 Seed – Xanga, as an inclusive community, needs to make room for everyone – trolls and serious bloggers alike. In claiming that there’s no part in our symphony for trolls, we leave room for what is essentially a thinly veiled “We don’t like yo’ types ’round hurr.” Who are we to say who belongs and who doesn’t? In order to maintain a legitimate sense of community, we don’t get to say “You’re annoying and hurtful, so you have no right to be here”.
Yes, trolls hurt feelings. But regular bloggers hurt feelings, too. In fact, I know many popular Xangans who make a point of hurting feelings, so it can’t be argued that intent to be hurtful is just cause to boot someone from the ‘symphony’.
As for taking attention away from people who deserve it, trolls only get as much attention as they’re given. They can spam your comment box ’til they’re blue in the face, but until someone acknowledges a troll, that troll has no power. Has no voice. We choose to give them what they want.
Thus, I argue that trolls, as with any other blogger, have their place within the social confines of Xangaland; whatever their function, they must be included with our sense of ‘community’.
13 Seed – The question here isn’t the censorship of Trolls, but whether they’re bad for Xanga.
Trolls have their charm, but in responding to the pro’s arguments, I will show that while her points are true, do not outweigh the presented harms of Trolls.
Trolls wound, and seed-4 is correct in arguing that they build solidarity, but the healing of the wound does not justify the slashing. Here, she feeds my point: The very act of having to confront the troll distracts from the substance of the actual entry.
Trolls carp, and my opponent is correct in saying that some Trolls check hypocrisy. Two responses: 1.) Most trolls aren’t this substantive 2.) Regular commenter are just as smart and observant as the troll, but without the attitude and combativeness.
The opposition ends her rebuttal with a bit of self-contradiction: Yes, trolls only get as much attention as we give them, but in her very opening, she presents all the goods of Trolls while ASSUMING attention handed to the troll.
Trolls are quaint, and some even cute, but on balance, they are bad for Xanga. In ringing their cowbells, and beating their drums, they destroy the very purpose of Xanga: Our blogs as self-expression. Our blogs as our own music.
Alright everybody. Who takes it?