The straight dope on the world’s greatest internet troll
Ken M turns the humble comment into an art form- See more at: http://www.mercatornet.com/connecting/view/the-straight-dope-on-the-worlds-greatest-internet-troll/18038#sthash.e14qeAL6.dpuf
Here at MercatorNet we take a great interest in nurturing a Comment Community. However, as on most sites, it is sometimes more like a cage fight between professional brawlers than a community. Following the comments can be more entertaining (if less informative) than the article itself.
But, if skilfuly used, there is gold in those threads. One person who has realised the comedic potential of comment threads is "Ken M", who is reputed to be the world's most famous internet troll. Vox interviewed him in the video above.
Ken M is the avatar of a Brooklyn comedian named Ken McCarthy who is a scriptwriter for Comedy Central. A few years ago he was dismayed by the toxic atmosphere on Yahoo News comments -- but then he realised that he could turn the hyper-aggressive nastiness of some contributors into laughter. His alter ego is a bumbling clueless grandfather who enrages people with his stupidity. It's a subtle and novel medium of humour. He has his own subreddit with more than 150,000 fans, plus Facebook and Twitter pages.
Here is a typical interaction with some of his fellow trolls:
It's a bit like being a judo master: turning weakness into victory by flipping a charging opponent onto his back:
Michael Cook is editor of MercatorNet
Following political news can be a depressing occupation. Our lead story today is a rather negative look at the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. But for all his boorishness, The Donald has been trumped by the election of Rodrigo Duterte as president of the Philippines, who has promised to end crime, mostly by killing the criminals. His remarks about women eclipse any of Mr Trump's more colourful remarks.
In search of some light relief, I discovered the author of a new art form, Ken M, who has been hailed as "the most epic troll on the internet". He has become an internet celebrity, profiled in Gawker, Gizmodo and other geeky online magazines. His subtle but hilarious ploy is to play dumb and allow other commenters to criticise him. But he always seems to have the last laugh. “What I do is turn a toxic space into a source of belly laughter, so it’s not gross anymore,” he once explained.
It's an intriguing approach to humanising the internet. Sometimes it pays not to be too serious. See the article and video below.
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Sarah Smith | FEATURES | 10 May 2016
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|The straight dope on the world’s greatest internet troll|
Michael Cook | CONNECTING | 10 May 2016
Ken M turns the humble comment into an art form
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Carolyn Moynihan | ABOVE | 10 May 2016
A new study points to anti-Christian prejudice in English schools.
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Nicole M. King | FAMILY EDGE | 10 May 2016
80 per cent of American mothers consider staying at home or working only part-time as ideal.
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