The unregulated internet has become a problem not just because of fake news and hate speech, but also because public perception has been altered drastically altered by hoards of internet savvy right wing extremists. Sites like 4chan allow anonymous right wing trolls to collaborate in large numbers to sabotage the public image of the accredited media, Hollywood and the democratic party.
So where do these trolls come from? Well, one theory is that the 21st century has witnessed many boys and young men shy away from the reasonable demands made of them by feminists, the media and general progressive society. Society simply demands that they refrain from holding extremist political opinions, support the rights of victim groups and tame their vulgar masculinity by staying away from guns, cars and violent sports. Many men have embraced this new way of life, joining womyn and progressives in shaming right wing extremists, virtue signalling about social justice topics, while being loyal to a good feminist womyn and respecting the family court system. However an increasing number of boys and young men are retreating from modern society into the gaming community and other dark corners of the internet, creating virtual spaces where they can discuss taboo topics, unacceptable preferences and extreme political believes.
It was communities like this, most notably on sites like 4chan, Stormfront and Zerohedge, that allowed Donald Trump to be elected president. These resentful and hate-filled young men collaborated from all over the world to create racist memes like Pepe the Frog (pictured below), which garnered the attention of millions and helped spread their message of hate and bigotry.
These notorious trolls also shut down Hillary’s campaign phone lines the day before the election, leading to significant loss of votes. They also routinely alter public perception by overwhelming internet polls with answers that undermine our government and promote Trump, like the one below.
Who do you believe America?
— John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) 6 January 2017
Another way that they alter public perception is by launching online campaigns to down-vote YouTube videos put out by their opposition, giving the appearance of unpopularity.
The emergence of subversive troll communities demonstrates again why we desperately need sensible internet regulations and a ban of fake news sites. If we do not tackle this issue now, progressives may be forced to engage with these trolls in this war of slander and fake news, instead winning public support with reasoned argument and fact-based accredited reporting, as we have been doing for decades. We must act now to restore political discourse, and put an end to this ugly era of Post-truth once and for all.