[comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition III Pt.2 - Linux

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  1. [comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition III Pt.2

    Following are excerpts from the official FAQ, entire text is found at:


    ************************************************** ******

    [comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition III

    Copyright: (c) 2002 The FAQ and Primer for COLA Team -- All Rights Reserved

    Frequently Asked Questions and Primer for comp.os.linux.advocacy

    Edition III

    April 19, 2002

    | Beware of those who would call you a friend for |
    | many will eat your bread while working against |
    | you. They will take credit for your good works |
    | and blame you for their own misdeeds. |
    | - TheGreat Unknown |


    7 Anti-Linux Propagandists and Trolls

    The comp.os.linux.advocacy newsgroup is a newsgroup that is under siege by
    one or more factions of anti-Linux propagandists. In the past those
    factions have appeared to be confident and smug; however, as of late it
    appears that they are becoming ever more desperate. The reason for their
    desperation appears to be as a result of growth of the mind share of Linux
    and the continuing failures of their chosen cause. Besides the true
    anti-Linux propagandists there are also the occasional classic newsgroup

    It can be difficult to determine what type of person a particular
    disruptive personality is; an anti-Linux Propagandist or just a troll.
    That is because they both use some of the same tactic. What it not
    difficult to determine is what their purpose is when they post to COLA.
    They are doing it to disrupt the newsgroup and sidetrack its purpose of
    existence. Regardless of their reason for the disruption, they are trying
    to prevent: the free exchange of knowledge and support based on experience
    of using Linux that would otherwise be happening in COLA, if it were not
    for their interference.

    The free and open discussions between the experienced users and the new
    users and the would be users of Linux that is our goal. That is the goal
    of all those who would be Linux advocates as well as all others who come
    to COLA to discuss Linux. All of us, Linux users new and old, those
    curious about Linux, and others, have come to COLA as students and as
    teachers. All that is except for the anti-Linux propagandists and the
    trolls, they have come to COLA to destroy it and prevent its being an
    asset to the Linux community.

    As has been stated else where in this document, all are welcome in COLA,
    except those who come to COLA to destroy Linux, COLA, or the Linux

    7.1 Disinformation

    If COLA were a physical location like a building where those who would
    advocate the growth of the Linux operating systems and the Linux community
    gather, the anti-Linux propagandists would be raiding that building. They
    would be vandalizing the building, painting graffiti on the walls,
    defecating and urinating on the floors and furniture, breaking down the
    doors, setting fire to the building and physically assaulting the resident
    Linux advocates and the visitors who happen to be in the building at the
    time of the raid.

    COLA is not a physical location, so they have had to adapt their methods
    so that they can do an on-line version of what was described in the prior
    paragraph. A key method used by anti-Linux propagandist to attack Linux,
    its users, sysadmins, developers, advocates and those who have come to
    COLA to lean about Linux. is a form of propaganda known as disinformation.
    One of their favorite version of disinformation is known as FUD.

    7.3 A Common FUD of the Anti-Linux Propagandists

    An example of dishonesty of the anti-Linux propagandists is their common
    claim that the Linux proponents in COLA oppose the use of any other
    operating system. They also would have you believe that the Linux
    proponents in COLA oppose everyone who does not use Linux all the time.
    Those are some of the lies that they use to try to discredit Linux users
    who post in COLA.

    The truth is that a user of one or more operating systems other than Linux
    are not opposed in COLA for that reason alone. Many of the Linux Advocates
    in COLA have experience on many other operating systems besides Linux.
    Many do use multiple operating systems on a regular basis. It is due to
    this experience that any disinformation regarding the capabilities of
    Linux, or that of other operating systems are easily detected by the Linux

    It is not difficult to tell the difference between an anti-Linux
    Propagandist and a true advocates of another operating system. Occasional
    mention of other operating systems is fine. However, it is the frequent or
    continuous promotion of other operating systems that turns a welcome
    poster into an unwelcome troll or anti-Linux propagandist.

    7.6 Trespasser Disinformation Tactics

    This is a list of the disinformation tactics that the that the anti-Linux
    propagandists who post in COLA have been using. All of these tactics have
    been used in COLA by the anti-Linux propagandists against the Linux
    advocates and the rest of the COLA readership to further the cause of the
    anti-Linux propagandists. This list has been worded as though you are one
    of them, so that you can better see through their eyes how they think.

    [1.] Act offended or claim that opposing viewpoints are incredible and/or
    unbelievable. When you are unable to valid argument to refute a Linux
    advocate, use empty statements such as:
    * "OH PULEEEZE!"
    * "Only a Linonut would say that"
    * "And they wonder why no one takes Linux seriously!"
    * "How dare you say that!"
    * "That's the way to offend thousands!"

    [2.] Distract your opponent from the issues at hand by accusing your
    opponents of being "petty", "pathetic", "childish" or any of a number
    of other such terms.

    [3.] Put your opponent off guard by insulting him. The liberal use of
    profanity and vulgarisms can be very effective, particularly when used
    against you more dignified opponents. Your experience as a school
    yard bully can be handy here

    [4.] Be patronizing, condescending and present an air of superiority. It
    may hide your inferiority to the casual reader. Use phrases like
    "kid" or "son", to elevate your relative apparent authority by
    attempting to diminish that of the Linux advocate you are addressing.

    [5.] Discredit your opponent or his position through the use of
    inappropriate laugher and other non-verbal grunts.

    [6.] When your tactics are turned on you, call you opponents trolls. Do
    not accept the fact that by calling someone using your tactics a troll
    that makes you the real troll.

    [7.] Keep posting non-stop. Flood the group with your idiocy and nonsense.
    Some readers may equate your volume with proof of quality. You will
    tie good Linux advocates in knots trying to refute you and they won't
    have time for real advocacy.

    [8.] Brag about destroying newsgroups and threaten to do the same to

    [9.] Drive as many good Linux Advocates out of the group as possible.

    10. Refuse to admit your errors
    Never ever admit your errors no matter how blatant they are. If you
    find no way out and have to admit that you are wrong, phrase it so
    that you can accuse your opponent of being wrong.

    11. Never apologize for your misbehavior
    Never ever apologize no matter how out of line you have been behaving.
    If you should ever find it to your advantage to apologize, phrase it
    as a slap in the face of the person who you have already wronged.

    12. Blame your stupidity and lies on your opponent
    Blame your own stupidity on the Linux advocate you are dealing with.
    Such as when you have made an unsupportable claim that suggest a list
    of details and your are asked to present your non-existent list reply
    with, "I don't have to list them for you; you aren't bright enough to
    know what you're missing by using X instead of a real Y, I'm not going
    to explain it to you." Then hope that nobody reading the thread
    realizes that your statement translates as, "I lack the knowledge or
    facts needed to counter your position or your position is too complete
    and accurate to be refuted. So, I will say things to sound superior
    to avoid admitting you are right."

    13. Embarrass your opponent
    Locate or create apparently embarrassing information or detail and
    utilize it out of all proportion-trying to create a scandal around it,
    to hijack a thread or drive everyone to distraction.

    14. Blackmail your opponent
    Locate or create apparently embarrassing information or detail and
    threaten your opponent with exposure to force him to do as you want
    him to. This tactic can be combined with the "Embarrass your opponent"
    tactic if you can no longer get your way though Blackmail.

    15. Avoid answering direct questions
    Avoid answering a direct questions that you fear by claiming to not
    have seen the question then refuse to address it for other reasons.
    Keep it up along with other tactics until your opponent is distracted
    from the question.

    16. Turn a question asked of you back on your opponent
    Better yet, turn the questions back on the Linux Advocate with a
    question like: "What do you think is the `right' answer, lamer?" You
    have now taken the heat off of your ignorance and you have cast doubt
    on the credibility of your opponent.

    17. Don't substantiate your claims
    Refuse to present evidence to support your invalid claims. Repeat your
    invalid claims and have your anti-Linux propagandist comrades do the
    same. Do the same for any invalid claims that you have notice your
    anti-Linux propagandists comrades make.

    18. Don't discuss evidence counter to your position
    Avoid examining or discussing evidence counter to your position. This
    is especially effective when combined with 3.2.8, Dancing Fool,
    wherein you change your position with every post.

    19. Present multiple personalities
    Change your position with every few article you post to
    comp.os.linux.advocacy. Appear to be supporting all sides of the
    issues. You can make a statements or opinion in one posting then
    follow it up with a another post with a contrary opinion. You can even
    get into an argument with yourself. This could cause readers to
    dismiss the subject of the thread.

    20. Narrow the scope of threads so that you can handle it. Narrow the
    scope of the issues that are being addressed in a thread to details
    you feel that you can refute, ridicule, or dismiss leaving the main
    issues unaddressed.

    21. Widen the scope of threads to swamp out the original issue.
    Widen the scope of the issues discussed in a thread to the point that
    the original issues are buried away and hopefully soon forgotten.

    22. Use invalid statistics
    Introduce statistics to try to hurt Linux, Linux Advocates, and/or the
    Linux community at large. Do not about them be valid or real. It would
    be nice if you can find those statistics on-line, but if you can't
    find any, invent them out of whole cloth. If they are discredited,
    don't let that bother you, keep citing them. If you see a fellow
    anti-Linux propagandist using statistics, cite them as well, no matter
    their lack of validity.

    23. Lie
    Lie, lie, lie, lie. If you do it often enough you may create the
    appearance of truth.

    24. Ignore dictionaries when they don't support you
    Rage against the use of dictionaries or other such documents, their
    use can only hurt you and expose your ignorance.

    25. Attack new posters who favor Linux
    Some of these Linux Advocates may be new to Linux and COLA. Show no
    mercy. Pounce upon their innocence with every single one of these
    tactics. If you are lucky you might turn them to your side, at the
    very least you may be able to drive them out of COLA and neutralize
    them as a threat.

    26. Attack typos and ignore the content of the message.
    Point out your opponent's grammatical flaws and spelling errors. By
    doing this you can concentrate on form while ignoring substance. This
    is a very handy method to discredit your opponent and by extension his
    position, without once again exposing your ignorance of the issues
    begin discussed in the thread.

    27. Use Spelling and Grammatical Errors to Distract
    Make statements like, "Why do you nea d to dbug the cernal? Is lienux
    not working agen!" When this tactic works, you have disarmed the
    supporters of Linux who have chosen to ignore you because of your
    idiot act, others may react to your style and fail to refute your
    disinformation. Meanwhile, you have posted your disinformation in
    support your cause.

    28. Start trolling threads
    Start threads with subjects like "Linsux Sux", "Linux fonts are bad",
    etc. Manufacture false evidence to back up your claims when possible,
    but don't worry that that is not important. All that is important is
    that you consume the efforts and resources of Linux Advocate as they
    try to refute your trolling threads and that you scare the new and
    casual readership of COLA.

    29. Unreasonably proclaim your reasonableness
    If your method to deliver anti-Linux propaganda is not among the more
    article style, you can try to claim to be reasonable. Of course if you

    really were reasonable, you would not be an anti-Linux propagandists
    in he first place; however, compared to your more radical comrades you
    may seem to be more reasonable. You can not be certain that the
    readership of COLA will accept your actions as being reasonable
    without your prompting them to think of you that way. So you need
    frequently mention how reasonable you are.

    30. Expose yourself on COLA.
    Post articles in COLA containing ASCII art depicting your body
    including your genitals, either in the message body or in the sig.
    Discuss your bodily functions and your bodily wastes, the more
    disgusting the better. It will tend to drive away more of the casual
    and new readers. The Linux Advocates who are frequent posters may
    become disgusted enough to avoid threads that you involve yourself in.

    31. If it makes Microsoft or Windows look bad call it a rumor
    Claim that anything that tends to make Microsoft or Windows look bad
    is an unfounded rumor and that you opponent is being unfair. If the
    information is obscure enough claim that it is an urban legend, hoping
    that no one knows that many legends are based on fact.

    32. Promote Windows at every opportunity
    Microsoft Windows needs a lot of help to be successful in the mind
    share of its targeted user base. Point out to everybody on COLA how
    wonderful it is. Ignore the meaning of the name of the newsgroup and
    its charter.

    33. Claim false Alignment
    Remind Everyone that you are a long-time Linux user and advocate. Of
    course it is not true, so you will be accused of being what you really
    are. When that happens and you are accused of working against Linux.
    Deny! Deny! Deny!

    34. Use of false identities
    Create throw away identities to enter the newsgroup to spread discord
    and after a few days or weeks, stop using that identity. If you are
    losing an argument create a new identity to support the position of
    your main identity. If things are getting slow, create a few
    identities counter to your primary identity. Start a n-on-1 argument
    with your primary identity being outnumbered. Then have each of your
    new identities be convinced by your primary identity to the error of
    their ways.

    35. When thing get too hot go away
    When all else fails and things get too hot, disappear from the group.
    This is not as drastic as it sounds. You might stay away for a few
    months and then return hoping that the other wintrolls have softened
    up the field a bit. If you don't want to stay away at all. Create a
    new primary identity and drop the use of the other one.

    36. Enter COLA as a sleeper.
    If you are a new anti-Linux propagandist, or at least your current
    false identity is new, then make your entrance as a dedicated Linux
    user. After a little while, claim to have seen the light and "convert
    back to Windows". Then you can promote Windows all you want for a
    while, before your true nature is commonly known. Sometimes this works
    for several hours before you are shouted down and have to move on to a
    new identity or continue on as "normal" anti-Linux propagandist.

    37. Enter COLA as a false disgruntled Linux user.
    Create a throw away false identity to enter the newsgroup in order
    claim to be short or long term Linux users who "have had enough of
    Linux and are returning to Windows." Stir things up for a day or two
    and disappear forever.

    38. Never leave a Linux positive thread unchallenged.
    If there is a thread developing that is positive for Linux, hijack
    that thread at all cost. Even if it means sacrificing your current
    identity. One method to do this is to ramble on about other topics,
    with or without the use embedded insults. Even if you fail to hijack
    the thread, you may be able to derail it enough to cancel the
    positive-for Linux-impact that it could have had.

    39. Lie about what you know
    Claim credit for experience, knowledge, or education that you do not
    have. It will impress readers who are not knowledgeable on the topic
    of the moment. Be careful to not engage someone who is truly
    knowledgeable on the subject in conversation or your actual ignorance
    will be exposed.

    40. Avoid providing any help.
    Because you claim to be such an expert so often, you may from time to
    time be asked for assistance. Don't provide it, you would only
    destroy the image you have lied so long to create. Treat an honest
    request based on a real situation as an argument: Restate the request
    for assistance in a real situation as a hypothetical situation that
    you can argue against.

    41. Use of Undefined Terminology
    Use terms such as "indoctrinated" as a substitute for "educated" or
    "experienced" when referring to a Linux Advocate. Use "pedantic" in
    place of "correct", "precise", or "accurate" when referring to a Linux
    Advocate. Create and use personal definitions such as "commercial
    quality" for impressive sounding terms to mislead the unwary. But
    never share your definitions for your inappropriate terminology. This
    is commonly known as Troll-speak.

    42. Use fake email addresses.
    Use a fake email address, not just a de-spammed address like real
    advocates use, but a completely fake and made-up one. If you feel the
    need for the appearance of normality use a real appearing email
    address-maybe not one of yours, but you can try to explain your act of
    identity theft as an accident.

    43. Citing vapor postings
    Cite the statements that you had "intended" to include but never
    actual written into your past posting. Gamble on the possibility that
    nobody will remember what you posted and that nobody will do the
    research to determine what you have posted. If you loose that bet, use
    another disinformation tactic to deflect the results of your using
    this tactic.

    44. Use being an idiot as an excuse
    When you are criticized for using disinformation tactics, claim
    ignorance of the disinformation tactics and use your apparent idiocy
    as an excuse for your actions. Do the same for your comrades, when a
    Linux Advocate corners one of your fellow anti-Linux propagandists
    tell that advocate something like "What are you doing? It's only John
    Doe for goodness sake!"

    45. Criticize Linux Advocates but ignore anti-Linux propagandist
    Always criticize the behavior of Linux Advocates, but, ignore the same
    and even worse transgressions are being committed by your fellow

    46. Accept the claims of other anti-Linux propagandists as face value
    Always treat other anti-Linux propagandist's statements as being true.
    Accept their interpretations without question, don't bother verifying
    their statements. If they claim something against a Linux advocate
    always side with the anti-Linux propagandists.

    47. Don't do your own homework
    Make your opponent do your research for you. Depending on who much
    credibility you still have will determine how successful you will be
    at this tactic.

    48. Don't let your ignorance stop you from posting
    No matter how little you understand of the issues being discussed in a
    thread, post anyway. If you don't know what you are talking about just
    pretend that you do.

    49. Restate the issues to support your preconceptions
    If the issues being discussed in a thread are not exploitable by you
    for your purpose, restate the issues to support your ability to attack
    Linux Advocate opponent.

    50. Claim god like attributes
    Claim god like attributes, such as being all knowing. If you don't
    want to make that claim, behave as though you are, any way.

    51. Claim only you understand what the issues are.
    Claim and other wise present the attitude to imply that only you know
    what the issues really are. Attempt to project the attitude that would
    tend to discredit your opponent at the same time.

    52. Invoke the mythical average user
    Always use the mythical average users as your yardstick for usability.
    No matter what is being discussed about Linux, restate the abilities
    of the average users to fall short of that needed.

    53. Use extortion to build an army
    Use extortion against a group to generate an army of flunkies to do
    your bidding and do you fighting for you. Such as when things are not
    going the way you want in COLA, crosspost a threat in another
    newsgroup a thread of your intention of making thing miserable for
    them if they don't take up your battle for you. This is a dangerous
    tactic for you the anti-Linux propagandists. If they don't react the
    way you wanted them to, you will either have to forget it or you could
    carry our your threat. If you forget it, you will loose even more
    credibility. If you carry out your threat you will still loose
    credibility and you could open yourself up for reprisal from those
    your are hurting by carrying out your threat. Even if you do form your
    army, you will be held responsible for the results of their actions on
    your behalf. A recent case (as of this writing) of this tactic being
    used by a anti-Linux propagandists can be revived by reading the
    thread that resulted with the crossposting of Message-ID:
    ozub8.40974$Wf1.7452626@ruti.visi.com to comp.os.linux.advocacy and

    54. The devil made me do it
    When you are caught in a situation for which you can not explain you
    actions without a confession of your dishonesty and your alignment,
    blame it on someone else. Create a boogyman to take the blame. A
    variation of this tactic was used in the thread cited above, in which
    the failed extortionist blames all the Linux Advocates in COLA for
    forcing him into attempting extortion.

  2. Re: [comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition III Pt. 2

    High Plains Thumper writes:

    > 7.1 Disinformation
    > 7.3 A Common FUD of the Anti-Linux Propagandists
    > 7.6 Trespasser Disinformation Tactics

    Hilarious. It's like a text book case of a serial schizo. Is everyone
    out to get you High Plains Hypocrite?

    "Let the body stay buried wherever he put it, maybe it'll get
    found some day, maybe not. "
    -- "Bo Raxo" in alt.true-crime, comp.os.linux.advocacy

  3. Re: [comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition IIIPt. 2

    Hadron wrote:
    > High Plains Thumper
    > writes:
    >> 7.1 Disinformation
    >> 7.3 A Common FUD of the Anti-Linux Propagandists
    >> 7.6 Trespasser Disinformation Tactics

    > Hilarious. It's like a text book case of a serial schizo. Is
    > everyone out to get you High Plains Hypocrite?

    No, it is what was agreed upon by the community here. If you do
    not like it, you have the freedom to leave. Following are
    guidelines from your ISP:




    Most hierarchies of Usenet have their own netiquette and
    guidelines. Users should pay attention to the relevant policies.
    Per the official FAQ posted at


    Netiquette for c.o.l.advocacy is summed up as:

    1.4 The Charter of comp.os.linux.advocacy

    The charter of comp.os.linux.advocacy is:

    For discussion of the benefits of Linux compared to other
    operating systems.

    That single sentence is the one and only charter of the
    newsgroup comp.os.linux.advocacy. The newsgroup's charter is for
    the newsgroup as a place for supporters of Linux to gather to
    discuss Linux, for the betterment of the Linux community and the
    promotion and development of Linux. It supports this as a place
    for those who would like to learn more about Linux to come to
    learn from those who know Linux. It does not call for it to be a
    place where the anti-Linux propagandists to gather in order to
    discredit Linux.
    From Motzarella.org Net Abuse FAQ:


    Q: Will we terminate an account for trolling?

    A: No. It takes two parties to troll, one to post a troll message
    and one to reply. Both those that post the initial message and
    those that reply are responsible for the trolling. Nearly every
    time we have investigated a complaint it is nearly impossible to
    tell who is trolling who, so we do not involve ourselves in these

    However, if one of our users is in a group primarily to cause
    disruption above and beyond what looks to us to be normal for the
    group, we will warn our user and term the account if the behavior
    continues. We support freedom of speech to disagree, not to just
    be disruptive.

    Q: Will we terminate an account for posting racist messages?

    A: No. One of the things we promote is freedom of speech.
    Although many find some views offensive, it is just a viewpoint.
    It is when that view becomes an action that causes harm that it
    should not be tolerated. Harm does not mean someone getting
    converted to that view.

    If you are being attacked or harmed, it has crossed into a legal
    issue, then you should be pursuing this in a legal forum. We will
    comply with a subpoena for our logs.

    There are instances, however, that we feel cross bounds and we
    will act on, e.g., deliberately posting racist messages just to
    stir things up rather than debate.

    Q: Will we terminate an account for posting against the charter?

    A: For the most part charters are a guide, especially in the alt
    hierarchy. We will not terminate an account for posting against
    some FAQ someone decided to post as rules in an alt group nor
    will we for posting off charter in an alt group. We are more
    strict regarding the big 8 and may issue a warning if someone
    refuses to abide by the charter when the majority in the group do.
    Even Motzarella.org has rules, and although they afford the
    poster maximal freedom in posting, there are limits.

    C.o.l.advocacy is a part of the Big 8 news groups. We are not an
    alt group. If you have no respect for the FAQ as approved and
    filed on behalf of the community here and the charter for which
    the group was originally commissioned, then recommend finding a
    suitable group for your style of posting.


  4. Re: [comp.os.linux.advocacy] FAQ and Primer for COLA, Edition IIIPt. 2

    Moshe Goldfarb. wrote:
    > Hadron wrote:
    >> High Plains Thumper writes:
    >>> 7.1 Disinformation
    >>> 7.3 A Common FUD of the Anti-Linux Propagandists
    >>> 7.6 Trespasser Disinformation Tactics

    >> Hilarious. It's like a text book case of a serial schizo. Is
    >> everyone out to get you High Plains Hypocrite?

    > The other faq that goes around here is actually more accurate.
    > I suspect HPT looks over his shoulder a lot.

    Recommend you look over your shoulder at my reply to Hadron, same

    Message-ID: <48dd96c0$0$17066$6e1ede2f@read.cnntp.org>


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