Trolls are no longer relegated to living out their mean lives harassing hapless travelers. Thanks to the internet, trolls have escaped their mythological homes and are infesting a website near you. Their methods have changed but their goals remain the same; to cause chaos, harass and generally just be a nuisance. This raises the question; how can I slay the troll residing on my website?
Know Your Enemy
Critics are people who will visit your website and will be very critical of the products or services that are offered. These people may have legitimate complaints that should be addressed and resolved promptly. Many times once the issue is resolved these same people will turn into the greatest asset a company can have. The happy and loyal customer who will tell lots of people. Word-of-mouth is priceless.
Trolls are people who may or may not have a legitimate complaint. A troll will consistently post negative, disruptive and inflammatory remarks with the goal of provoking an emotional reaction. They will post ridiculous or contentious questions, mocking or veiled sarcasm or anything else they can do to cause your online users to suffer.
Create a Page Rules Tab
One of the best things a site admin can do is to create a page clearly stating the rules regarding the behavior of its online users. This will help to set a clear example of the rules of conduct and make your page a more civil place for public interaction.
Don’t Feed the Trolls!
One of the worst things you can do as a site admin is to confront the troll in a public forum. The troll lives for this kind of drama and will thrive on it. Make it a policy to starve the troll by ignoring it. This, of course, does not work all the time because some trolls are more trollish than others. They may manage to get others to respond to them even if you do not. When this happens there are few other options than to ban them. If the trolls have been nuisance enough that they have been banned then it is likely that you will want to delete their posts. While deleting posts can remove the inflammatory remarks, the censorship of your website can cause a host of other problems more damaging than anything the original post could have done. Be very cautious when removing material and consider the consequences before you remove it.