The Myth of Free Speech in the Realm of Online Trolling: Exploring Cyber Shadows Through Psychological Lens

Authors

  • Aqsa Farooq BS English student, Department of English, University of Central Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan Author
  • Rahat Bashir Lecturer, Department of English. University of Central Punjab, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan Author https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9494-2215
  • Sadia Asif Assistant Professor, Department of Linguistics and Communication, University of Management and Technology Author

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.33195/

Keywords:

Instagram post comments, hate speech, free speech, deindividuation, dark triad, psychological

Abstract

The emerging time of the internet has made people across the globe collide at the same point with very different yet inquisitive mindsets. Meanwhile, it is observed that most social media posts are bombarded with online trolling. The purpose of this study is to untie the complex knots of the free speech notion that people on social media use as their right to share opinions, but they inject hate speech through their contributions, which can be examined by the support of Instagram's comment section which has the focal significance in my data collection. Data is collected by purposive sampling, by taking the comments from the recent viral posts mainly of two categories, one of political figures and the second of celebrities. The data is then analyzed through a psychological lens, examining the psychological factors behind such destructive involvements with the assistance of dark triad theory, which was coined by researchers Delroy L. Paulhus and Kevin M. Williams in 2002, and deindividuation theory by social psychologist Leon Festinger in the 1950s. The qualitative data shows how people on social platforms have become cyber shadows to engage in such anti-normative and disruptive behaviours. The results show that social media post comments portray the personalities of online trolls as having a shield of anonymity and factors of dark personality traits of Narcissism, where they give excessive importance to themselves only, Machiavellianism, because of their manipulative behaviour they can mould their grudges into honest opinions, and Psychopathy because of their apathetic view towards one's self-destruction and depression, tempt them to involve in such situations. Researchers should also reflect upon how people in our surroundings are misleading the very essence of free speech by using its negative connotations. In conclusion, the analysis shows that this is not what they call free speech; rather, it is utter hate speech with the intent to disturb and disrupt human living and social peace.

References

• Brink, D. O. (2001). MILLIAN PRINCIPLES, FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION, AND HATE SPEECH. Legal Theory, 7(2), 119–157. https://doi.org/10.1017/s1352325201072019

• Buckels, E. E., Jones, D. N., & Paulhus, D. L. (2013). Behavioral confirmation of everyday sadism. Psychological Science, 24(11), 2201–2209. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797613490749

• Buckels, E. E., Trapnell, P. D., Andjelovic, T., & Paulhus, D. L. (2018). Internet trolling and everyday sadism: Parallel effects on pain perception and moral judgment. Journal of Personality, 87(2), 328–340. https://doi.org/10.1111/jopy.12393

• Castaño-Pulgarín, S. A., Suárez-Betancur, N., Vega, L. M. T., & López, H. M. H. (2021). Internet, social media and online hate speech. Systematic review. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 58, 101608. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.avb.2021.101608

• Golf-Papez, M., & Veer, E. (2017). Don’t feed the trolling: rethinking how online trolling is being defined and combated. Journal of Marketing Management, 33(15–16), 1336–1354. https://doi.org/10.1080/0267257x.2017.1383298

• Gylfason, H. F., Sveinsdóttir, A. H., Vésteinsdóttir, V., & Sigurvinsdóttir, R. (2021). Haters gonna hate, trolls gonna troll: The personality profile of a Facebook troll. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(11), 5722. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18115722

• Hopkinson, C. (2013). Trolling in online discussions: From provocation to community-building. Brno Studies in English, 39(1), 5–25. https://doi.org/10.5817/bse2013-1-1

• Howard, K., Zolnierek, K. H., Critz, K. L., Dailey, S. L., & Ceballos, N. A. (2019). An examination of psychosocial factors associated with malicious online trolling behaviors. Personality and Individual Differences, 149, 309–314. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.paid.2019.06.020

• John Stuart Mill and the “Marketplace of Ideas” on JSTOR. (n.d.). www.jstor.org. https://www.jstor.org/stable/23559183

• Lepoutre, M. (2019). HATE SPEECH LAWS: EXPRESSIVE POWER IS NOT THE ANSWER. Legal Theory, 25(4), 272–296. https://doi.org/10.1017/s135232522000004x

• Lopes, B., & Yu, H. (2017). Who do you troll and Why: An investigation into the relationship between the Dark Triad Personalities and online trolling behaviours towards popular and less popular Facebook profiles. Computers in Human Behavior, 77, 69–76. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2017.08.036

• Manuoğlu, E., & Öner-özkan, B. (2022). Sarcastic and Deviant Trolling in Turkey: Associations With Dark Triad and Aggression. Social Media + Society, 8(3), 205630512211260. https://doi.org/10.1177/20563051221126053

• March, E., McDonald, L., & Forsyth, L. (2023). Personality and internet trolling: a validation study of a Representative Sample. Current Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-023-04586-1

• Molenda, Z., Marchlewska, M., Rogoza, M., Michalski, P., Górska, P., Szczepańska, D., & Cislak, A. (2022). What makes an Internet troll? On the relationships between temperament (BIS/BAS), Dark Triad, and Internet trolling. What Makes an Internet Troll?, 16(5). https://doi.org/10.5817/cp2022-5-11

• Nitschinsk, L., Tobin, S. J., & Vanman, E. J. (2022). The disinhibiting effects of anonymity increase online trolling. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 25(6), 377–383. https://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2022.0005

• Nitschinsk, L., Tobin, S. J., & Vanman, E. J. (2023). A functionalist approach to online trolling. Frontiers in Psychology, 14. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2023.1211023

• Papapicco, C., & Quatera, I. (2019a). “Do not Make to eat to Troll!”: The Dark Side of Web. Communication and Media Technologies, 9(2). https://doi.org/10.29333/ojcmt/5764

• Papapicco, C., & Quatera, I. (2019b). 2019.1 - The Lab’s Quarterly, 4. Concetta Papapicco, Isabella Quatera, La fabbrica dei Troll[5694]. ResearchGate. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/333995393_20191_-_The_Lab's_Quarterly_4_Concetta_Papapicco_Isabella_Quatera_La_fabbrica_dei_Troll5694

• Paulhus, D. L., Curtis, S. R., & Jones, D. N. (2018). Aggression as a trait: the Dark Tetrad alternative. Curr Opin Psychol, 19, 88–92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.copsyc.2017.04.007

• Reynard, L. (2020). Troll farm. In IGI Global eBooks (pp. 230–265). https://doi.org/10.4018/978-1-7998-1684-3.ch010

• Volkmer, S. A., Gaube, S., Raue, M., & Lermer, E. (2023). Troll story: The dark tetrad and online trolling revisited with a glance at humor. PLOS ONE, 18(3), e0280271. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0280271

• Yong, C. (2011). Does freedom of speech include hate speech? Res Publica, 17(4), 385–403. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11158-011-9158-y

Downloads

Published

04/07/2024

How to Cite

Aqsa Farooq, Rahat Bashir, & Sadia Asif. (2024). The Myth of Free Speech in the Realm of Online Trolling: Exploring Cyber Shadows Through Psychological Lens. University of Chitral Journal of Linguistics and Literature, 8(I), 139-149. https://doi.org/10.33195/

Similar Articles

1-10 of 54

You may also start an advanced similarity search for this article.

Most read articles by the same author(s)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 > >>