A troll is, of course, someone who goes online to pick a fight, for whatever reason: to push a political agenda, to dump on someone he or she dislikes, to vent on a topic he or she feels strongly about, or very often just for the “lulz” (laughs).
In recent years, however, trolling has come to dominate public discourse on social media.
Go online and there’s no avoiding the spectacle of “Dutertards” spitting venom at their real or imagined mortal enemies, the “yellowturds” and vice versa, each drowning out any kind of rational discussion of the issues with the sheer volume (in both quantity and noise level) of their spew.
It’s now generally accepted that social media was a critical factor in deciding the outcome of the last election. What is less clear is why, even after Rodrigo Duterte’s decisive victory at the polls, the online war between his die-hard supporters and more vocal critics hasn’t abated.
If fact, it seems to have heated up even more as pro-Duterte keyboard warriors transition seamlessly from campaigning for him to attacking any and all who dare criticize the newly-elected president or his policies. In particular, Sen. Leila de Lima, the Liberal Party and “traditional media” have been singled out as favorite targets of this troll army.