Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

This reminds me of the old VBulletin plugin "Miserable Users"[0].

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.

* [0] https://www.vbulletin.org/forum/showthread.php?t=93258






Kinda reminiscent of advice I’ve overheard for breaking up with a narcissist: make them break up with you by being boring.

This is the 'Grey Rock' strategy:

> 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.

https://lovefraud.com/the-gray-rock-method-of-dealing-with-p...


One of the first things I recall my parents telling me is a bully wants attention. Don't react, don't engage, and they'll lose interest.

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".


I didn't know this, but I knew it as what I came to call the "Pattinson Defence": https://i.redd.it/yukn5zrxm9t31.png

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.


Can confirm this worked with an ex-friend. She was such an emotional drain, that just not responding just generated more ire. In the end, just gave a lot of boring responses and she grew tired, eventually allowing me to no-contact simply and easily.

Sounds effective, but I wonder where the author got that definition of "psychopath".

The author was concerned with true psychopaths (in the clinical sense), but I guess this timid tactic is as usable towards the narcissistic types.

Psychopath doesn't have a clinical definition. It's strictly pop-sci bollocks. (EDIT: "psychopath" does not appear as a diagnosis in ICD10 or DSM IV or DSM V. Other disorders have some overlap with the concept of psychopathy, but there isn't any dx that has a clear mapping.)

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.


Yes, agree that using the word 'narcissist' instead would have been better. Psychopaths don't necessarily feed on drama or crave attention.

Interesting that this language is gendered.

> his mind is re-trained to expect boredom rather than drama

> 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.


Should all previous content be rewritten on the internet to be PC? This is from 2012, and as far as I've noticed, this gender neutral thingy started coming up a few years after that.

In the same way that you wouldn't quote somebody on the whimsical nature of the feeble woman, you shouldn't propagate ideas that paint men as perpetrators.

In 2012, this was already well-known. The language is jarring and sexist for no apparent reason. It is not undue revisionism.


> It is not undue revisionism.

Any level of revisionism is undue.


Perpetrators are most often men, though. That's not good, no! But you do not fix that problem by pretending it does not exist.

The point of not using gendered language is to compensate for discrimination, not to hide problems.


I disagree. I did not find it jarring nor did I perceive it as sexist.

Perhaps we need a browser plugin for people to detect when ‘he’ is being used as the default gender and convert it?

‘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.


> browser plugin

They exist. I'm not sure that they can de-gender language, but they can swap word A for word B


It's not that English is sexist, it's that the passage is sexist. Using "they" as gender neutral has been around for decades.

[flagged]


How is my point any more or less valid than the one to which I was responding?

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.



I noticed the same thing. Maybe I should have got a quote from elsewhere as it's not particularly well written. Nevertheless, it still gets the concept across.

I didn't notice the gender at all.

Yeah, sounds good.

This brings back memories. I loaded this plugin as well to deal with some problem users.

This sounds pretty terrible when you think about how arbitrarily websites can determine you're a "bad user", but then again I like the idea of doing this programmatically for sites I myself want to stop using.

Either that or a plugin to encourage productivity.

Don't block social media sites, just turn them all into slow ineffective shitty websites.


If you don't already, you should browse HN with ShowDead turned on. There are people who have been banned for years and blissfully post comments several times per week completely unaware that almost nobody is seeing their comments.

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.


I don't think many people are unaware. Sometimes when I see dead comments I trace their comment history back to the point they were banned. Cause I'm curious how those subterranean dwellers got that way. Almost invariably they were reprimanded by dang, repeatedly, and refused to change their ways, or to write to HN saying they'd change their ways. I don't recall seeing someone just mysteriously banned without an obvious refusal to behave decently/put some effort into their comments. The white dead comments don't start at some random point, they start with the person being told they are banned, and what to do about 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:

  javascript:(function(){var i,x=document.querySelectorAll(".commtext");for (i=0;i<x.length;i++) x[i].className='commtext c00'})();
For other sites–on the topic of useful bookmarklets–this one, "Kill Element", is a lifesaver. On any site with an annoying fixed window thing on the screen, like a "cookies?" popup etc, just click on the bookmarklet then on the offending element and it disappears! Hugely satisfying, and instant. Enjoy!

  javascript:for(var i=0; i<(document.getElementsByTagName('a')).length; i++) {(document.getElementsByTagName('a')[i]).style.pointerEvents = 'none';}function handler(e) {e = e || window.event;var target = e.target || e.srcElement;target.style.display = 'none';document.removeEventListener('click', handler, false);cursor('default');for(var i=0; i<(document.getElementsByTagName('a')).length; i++) {(document.getElementsByTagName('a')[i]).style.pointerEvents = 'initial';}}document.addEventListener('click', handler, false);cursor('crosshair');function cursor(cur) { document.body.style.cursor = cur; }

I browse HN with showdead. I encounter very few hidden comments and I regularly vouch for comments by new accounts that were apparently caught in some kind of spam filter.

Perhaps different people get shown different dead comments?

I browse with showdead too, the few really bad ones are also usually at the very bottom of the thread, which I don't see often ;)

I've had it on for a while. IMO, there aren't that many dead comments, and most are clearly dead for good reason. I suppose I like it, as a check that the mods aren't doing anything funny.

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.


I just checked, and I have ShowDead on, so I must have had it on for a rather long time since I don’t at all remember hearing about it or turning it on. I also don’t recall seeing a dead comment, or perhaps I don’t know how to identify them.

It just says [dead] next to the time when the comment was posted or something like that.

How do you turn on the ShowDead settings? I don't see that in my settings page..

Between email and noprocrast?

It may be that you need a certain amount of karma to get that option.

It will be nice if there was an option to post underground comments on per comment basis that aren't subject to moderation :)



Applications are open for YC Summer 2020

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact

Search: