Floods of trolls

An early Internet party could be immediately besieged by floods of Internet trolls.

Some of them could be marketing robots, which can be taken care of by filters, and no political debate would prevent from immediate deletion.

However there are other kinds of destructive entrance.

Early in the party’s life, there is bound to be several voices who spend all their time loudly declaring that the party must take this or that position, perhaps not understanding that we are a multi-tendency party which contains disagreements, or believing that their pet issue is an exception.  They will spend most of their time just demanding people take certain positions, speaking in highly moral and denunciatory terms.  They won’t talk much in terms of helping the party actually find its legs organizationally.

For one thing, there needs to be a distinction between discussion of wider, overall social issues, not immediately connected to any party decision, and discussions immediately pertinent to what we are going to do or what formal positions we would consider taking.  The wider political discussion is necessary for a healthy party, and it’s also necessary that not every discussion about concrete action get bogged down in flame wars over the latest issue in the news.

Regarding those who insist they contribute mainly by arguing for positions…Are they actually committed to the project of expanding this party, or just abusing it as one more space to blast their views?  All this often does is increase the amount of noise that people have to sift through in order to get to the real work of building a functional, visible pole of attraction.

There also might be people who turn against the core foundational principles of the party.  People will argue it shouldn’t be socialist, it should be something else.  People will argue that it shouldn’t be electoral, but that it should be a direct-democractic organization that focuses solely on movements and not on elections.  People could question the direct democracy.  People will, as stated above, demand we abandon our multi-tendency ways by requiring the entire group to agree to one position on some issue in the news.

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Banning authority is possibly established by election, but more so by making clear rules about what gets banned.  Core principles can establish what the party is, and is not, about; people who appear specifically for the purpose of advocating against the party’s democratically-selected, or foundationally-selected, core stances.

The usual hate speech is of course a banning offense.  However this should probably not be extended to any-and-every instance of political incorrectness, because there are many widely-varying analyses of oppression and how to combat it.  We must, for example, be able to include BOTH comrades who believe in privilege theory AND comrades who do not, while expecting everyone to acknowledge and oppose oppression.

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