Communications Professor Claims Internet Trolls are Privileged, White Males

Answering questions from the LA Times, Whitney Phillips, a lecturer in communications at Humboldt State University and a media studies scholar, declared that internet “trolls” are white, privileged males.
When asked what the “demographics” of the trolls are, Phillips responded, “They’re asserting power and privilege in an unmistakable pattern: They’re policing against female-gendered behaviors — anything regarded by them as soft or emotional or sentimental. The idea of “raping with logic” comes up again and again. That’s how they understand and celebrate their behavior.”

She continued, “Trolling is gendered male. With race, there’s this presumption that everyone [trolling] is white, and anyone who deviates from that has to flag themselves. And this is leisure activity. Only a certain kind of person is going to have the time or energy to devote to something that doesn’t get them anything other than enjoyment and interest.”


Founder and editor of the Social Memo

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