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It's interesting that, as others have remarked, trolling is more often aimed at women than men - it seems as if confident, intelligent, outspoken women are inherently threatening to a certain sort of viewer. I've experienced some abuse online and it can be very disturbing - it's easy to say "ignore it" but it's hard not to respond emotionally, even if you don't express it. Having abuse hurled at you by strangers who've never even met you IS unnerving and unpleasant. For those who say that trolling is freedom of expression, well, perhaps, up to a point. But where do you draw the line? Surely if you wouldn't be expected to put up with hurtful, stupid, personal abuse in person, you shouldn't be expected to put up with it on the web? When it actually becomes threatening, then it needs to be stopped - with legal action if necessary. I watched that particularly Question Time (actually, I was about to switch it off until I realised that Mary Beard was on and decided that would make it interesting) and I thought Dr Beard talked nothing but sense about immigration - and in a logical, thought-through way, backed up with evidence. I applaud her for saying this will not put her off appearing on other panels.
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Apr 30, 2010