Rise of the Troll
Memes and Trolling have stormed the internet like wildfire; they are indeed the viral sensations that mastered the recent web age.
Traditionally, a meme is a discrete “package of culture” that would travel via word of mouth, usually as a mesmerizing story, a fable/parable, a joke, or an expression of speech. Today, memes travel much faster than simple speech; they are now described as images, videos, and so on that are passed electronically from one internet user to another.
Trolling on the other hand is a more recent word. The Urban Online Dictionary defines it as: “The art of deliberately, cleverly, and secretly pissing people off, usually via the internet, using pictures and/or dialogue.” Add memes to trolling and you got yourself a clever, comedic clip art that can either make you roll on the floor laughing, or grind your teeth.
Guyana has its share of trolling, as you can imagine with the internet uniting us faster than ever before. We are now right behind the net flow… Guyana Trolling, GT=Legendz, Saint Roses High Troll, Bishops Troll and the biggest Guyanese comedic page on Facebook, GT Troll!
GT Troll was launched in March of this year and already it is leading with over nine thousand followers; most teenagers and young adults now can’t even go a week without visiting the Facebook page. The page is always up to date with news and political mimics, but don’t dare mess with GT Troll. It has been known to bombard enemies, and is the sole reason for other troll pages shutting down. GT=Legendz is hanging on a thread with only one thousand followers.
Sometimes the troll page can be critical of politicians and local celebrities; not all see it as a good laugh. Joel Ghansham once updated his status basically saying that trolling has now reached a point of being plain nonsensical and that people should find more fulfilling ways to occupy their idle time.
Trolling has stepped down from its climax but not significantly, memes are still funny and most are culturally aligned to their followers. Youth groups and school children are making troll pages that highlight their school experience – from making fun of their teachers to sharing ‘inside’ jokes.
Everything surrounding the internet has to do with responsibility and sometimes trolling can go too far. There was once a time when Facebook troll sites would take random photos of people, edit them and publically scar them for a few laughs; this act has decreased but nevertheless nothing is truly erased on the net.
We can look to the future generations to continue being humorous as this grabs people’s attention more quickly than deeper meme content, or to become more sophisticated in their thinking and expect memes to become progressively more intellectual and philosophical, dealing with current affairs and society.
For sure this is now becoming an integral part of web-culture. This internet sensation is called comedic artwork by some and idiotic trash by others; what would you call it?