We also had a community suffering from this problem (during the early 2000's). Bans would take care of a lot of problem users, but would just give energy to those truly out for blood, troll, bored, or very immature.
We had one user get banned over a dozen times while we tried banning IPs, name regex or anything else we could think of. Finally, like you, we found that if we annoy them first, they get bored and shuffle off to some other, lower barrier place.
Some of the nice features from that plugin (via the site) were:
1. Slow response (time delay) on every page (20 to 60 seconds default).
2. A chance they will get the "server busy" message (50% by default).
3. A chance that no search facilities will be available (75% by default).
4. A chance they will get redirected to another preset page (25% & homepage by default).
5. A chance they will simply get a blank page (25% by default).
6. Post flood limit increased by a defined factor (10 times by default).
7. If they get past all this okay, then they will be served up their proper page.
*  https://www.vbulletin.org/forum/showthread.php?t=93258
> So, how do we escape this parasitical leech without triggering his vindictive rage? Gray Rock is primarily a way of encouraging a psychopath, a stalker or other emotionally unbalanced person, to lose interest in you. It differs from No Contact in that you don’t overtly try to avoid contact with these emotional vampires. Instead, you allow contact but only give boring, monotonous responses so that the parasite must go elsewhere for his supply of drama. When contact with you is consistently unsatisfying for the psychopath, his mind is re-trained to expect boredom rather than drama. Psychopaths are addicted to drama and they can’t stand to be bored. With time, he will find a new person to provide drama and he will find himself drawn to you less and less often. Eventually, they just slither away to greener pastures. Gray Rock is a way of training the psychopath to view you as an unsatisfying pursuit you bore him and he can’t stand boredom.
I did this at my old workplace where people would get enraged. I learned not to interrupt and not even try to be empathetic no engagement at all.
People are like cats they only react to stimulation.
Even for love today being Valentine's Day I recall a saying, "the opposite of love isn't hate it's indifference".
It worker really well -- although not perfectly -- when I was being constantly annoyed by someone. I explicitly told them I didn't want to deal with them, but they kept coming. They stopped once, to their "how are you?", I replied with how I really was.
That's a good thing, because it avoids stigmatising a real diagnosis that's given to a group of people who are already deeply stigmatised.
> he will find a new person to provide drama and he will find himself drawn to you less and less often
> he can’t stand boredom
Unnecessarily gendered language is jarring for the reader and also, (possibly) unintentionally, sexist. The singular they/them/their is generally acceptable to use in cases such as these.
In 2012, this was already well-known. The language is jarring and sexist for no apparent reason. It is not undue revisionism.
Any level of revisionism is undue.
The point of not using gendered language is to compensate for discrimination, not to hide problems.
‘He’ worked as the default pronoun for a long time in many languages all over the world. (And still does in many languages) I find it curious how many people can be sold into the idea that a language can be considered sexist.
They exist. I'm not sure that they can de-gender language, but they can swap word A for word B
I was simply offering that I don’t perceive the language as sexist. You do. That’s fine.
Similarly, I would offer that I don’t find your sarcasm productive in a civil discussion.
Either that or a plugin to encourage productivity.
Don't block social media sites, just turn them all into slow ineffective shitty websites.
Often, the comments they're posting into the black hole are indicative of why they were banned in the first place but if I see a comment that is dead and it does add to the conversation then I vouch for it which un-deads it.
Although I did see a fairly new account the other day with every comment dead, from the very first one, with no visible mod intervention; I figured it was from being a sockpuppet or someone with a track record.
p.s. I wouldn't want showdead on all the time! I use this "HN ungrey" bookmarklet to see whited-out comments on a page. Also it's useful to read comments that have just been voted down enough to be hard to read:
Then again, it's always possible that there's another, deeper "dead" in there, and only the really lousy spam shows up on "showdead". But that way lies paranoia.