The following is one sysop's idea on flame warring. It is developed over the course of one summer in heated debates ranging from anarchy, socialism to xenophobic FIDOnet sysops. Please read the with an open mind and anylize them. I claim no responsibility for anyone that choses to use the following tips, but I feel that if used the way I perscribe that no harm will result, except maybe hyperventalation from the humor or irony.
OTTO'S FLAME TIPS How to conduct a flame war or How to piss off FIDOnet sysops in 105
Note to the reader: This document is one on how to conduct a proper flame ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ war, and is in no way directed at any BBS in particular. A person that DL'd this Gfile and then UL'd onto a NET 105 BBS has been making wild accusationg about this, by titleing it "Otto's Tips on how to piss of NET 105 sysops". The only name that this document may go by is "Otto's Tips on Flame Warring" Why go through all of the troubles of renaming it and breaking a copyright law?
Introduction: This document was created over the course of a few messages. I ~~~~~~~~~~~~ found that it was in the best interest of the entire community to hear my tips on flame warring. I HIGHLY suggest that you do try a few of the tips, however: I will take no responsibility for any trouble that you get into. If anyone calls under my names, make SURE that they are me and not just some imposteur trying to use my name.
Well, after my immersion on the NET 105, I thought that it would be a good idea to write down a very simple thing about flame warring. These are all ideas, and I do not reccomend trying them.
I. The Target
Perhaps the most important thing in a flame war is deciding who to hit with your words. Depending on the results wanted, I would suggest the following as a guide, and the pro's and con's are listed:
GENERAL USER- this is the best choice if you are looking for some fun with almost no chances of it getting you burned. The only problem (if this is one) is that you will almost never get anything (if you are trying) done. I highly recommend this for practice.
SYSOP- this is the fun one. What you do is find a sysop that is very conservative and a jerk (the best ones are the sysops that are doing it for the power trip and that constanly break the rules). The problem here is that you may be thrown off of the system (oh no!) and if it is a NETed system, you may have problems throughout the net. The pro's of this target is that the sysops will notice you from now on, and will most likely want to kill you. If you are going for a cause, this is the best target.
II. The Subject
The best subject to use is dependant upon your cause. If you are trying to get a place to debate, use high risk [Ø·6®[c¹ (i.e. A.I.D.S., Government, Womens Lib.) Eventualy they will end up involved in a flame-war (the other users and the sysops) and WILL HAVE TO GIVE IN or lose all of their users.
If you are looking to shut down a few nodes, the best way to go is constant bickering. You want people to have to read whatever you are saying no matter where they go. Once the sysop realizes that you will not give up, he will give in or the people will withdraw.
III. The Way to Do It
Ok, first off you need to log in. Use a fake name (make sure that you use a name in the phone book), and make sure that the phone number is correct. You will not want to stay with an alias for too long.
In the beginning, just read. After you get the feel for the weak spots start posting. I do not suggest (and in fact will kill anyone doing this) complaining about BBS types being better or worse, or the grammer and spelling of another person. Keep the first few posts fairly civil, and slowly build up the flames. After a few days the message bases will be very hot and you will have mega-attention. Remember to post on as many bases as you can to maximize your effectivity in your cause. ( We call this the blanket / smother effect
- note: never flame about something that you know
nothing about. It is best to be very knowledgable
in whatever thing you flame about.
IV. Writing the Message
A: Check the Spelling B: Do not swear C: Quote! D: Provide sources (fake are cool too) to back up your side E: Site examples from other states and regions F: Never give in unless it is just as a ruse G: You are a psychologist H: Everyone is always out to kill you. I: Everyone is on your side, they just are so taken in by you messgages that they are at a lack of words.
- note: H and I do contradict, TRUST ME.
The above should be some good pointers on flaming. I would suggest that you always keep the words clean and do not swear, as swearing really ruins the messages and makes you look uneducated.
When the flames start getting hot the users will get mad. When the users get mad, they complain. Once that happens- the sysop is in a tough position. If he is net'd he will have to drop the NET or get dropped. There is almost NO way to completely eliminate the flame- artists from loggin in. I never went away, probably because no one ever kicked me off of their system.
The HOT topic list: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
- CENSORSHIP: call the sysop a "censorsop". Tell eveyone that the sysop
is removing messages for no reason. For proof enter a really
normal message, screen copy it..then delete the online message. Wait for a day and scream bloody murder for this injustice.
- VIOLATION OF POLICY: now this is the easiest. There are sysops and
users out there that just cannot follow the rules. Don't worry
about the users-- just get the sysop because he is supposed to be the roll model (or she).
- AGISM: everyone knows that adults are fascist pigs, so remind
the entire BBS a few times.
- GOVERNMENT: anarchy, socialism or communism should do the trick.
Offer the Communist Witch Hunts of the '50s. This will cause an
uproar. (I have actually tried this one many a time)
The DUMB topic list: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
- CLASSES: my BBS is better than your BBS messages. Very dumb, and
a bad approach.. doesn't seem cool because you may end up
flaming a perfectly cool sysop unknowingly.
- SPELLING: this is the worst and lowest blow. DO not even BOTHER
with it. This is a sign of the other side having nothing left to
say. It is a fairly good side that you have almost won, or that the other side is out of ideas (for now..).
HOW TO CHOOSE A NAME:
- Grab the phone book
- Pick three numbers (random) 0-9.
- Go to that page
- Randomly grab a name and a phone number
- Log in to the BBS
- Use the above name
- read a bunch of messages, find one that offers
[wait for 12 hours or 24 hours.. depending if it is NET'd]
- Call back
- Repeat from  down.
Use the same name until you are discovered. Most sysops only check to see if the name exists, not if the person lives there. I would suggest that you use a name that sounds VERY real if you make up a new alias. You will need to change names periodicaly, and whatever you do: NEVER GO BACK TO THE SAME NAME or else you will be killed the first time; some BBS's have a TRASHCAN file where bad users' names are put.
TIPS ON MESSAGE FORMAT AND WRITING: Do not swear, as people with a limited ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ vocabulary must lower themselves to
this. The way to combat bordome in drab messages: a thesaurus. (dictionaries are also of use) To make the messages very interesting and use very long words, but not too long or else the people will just scan over them.
calmness, n.: quietness, tranquillity, calm.
From the above I would choose tranquillity because it sounds so ironic to find it in a flame message.
Basicaly, remember that you WANT people to read these messages, and not just pass them by. I would suggest humor through irony, a good vocabulary, intelligent writing style, and ABOVE ALL: good grammer.
- never get mad
- never try to impersonate someone
- never use your real name or number
- always keep a GOOD user on every BBS
- never form an alliance with ANYONE
- do not compromise
I suggest keeping a good user on a few BBSes because that way you can keep a constant supply of information. Never call in with both users at the same hour or else patterns will show and you will be discovered. I do not suggest alliances as they will eventualy turn against you.
COMBATTING PARANOIA: In the flame you will get paranoid. By all means combat ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ this with anything that you can find. I have never been
been able to do this. Remember that they do NOT know who you are, and they cannot come to your house and make you into a pudding that Bill Cosby will be shoving down some kid's throat.
CONFIDENTIALITY: Never believe this policy. I have been ratted on before. I ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ do not suggest letting ANYONE know who you are– even your
friends. A sysop may say that his records are confidential: but they NEVER are. I currently have my real name floating around between PDX and Vancouver on just about every OPUS (about 1000000 zillion.. hard to count because there are no identifying/charecteristic features/prop- erties) by a sysop who claimed to be confidential.
FILE TRANSFERS: When you have all of these names, make sure to use them to ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ get the advantage of virtualy unlimited DL/UL abilities.
When you first start the war (user name #1) wait until it gets bad, then milk the DL/UL areas until you are thrown off for messages and DL/UL ussage (or should I say exploitation?). When you get thrown off just start in another day or so-- UNDER A DIFFERENT NAME.
WHEN TO STRIKE: When the sysop is on vacation. If the sysop is not answering ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ his mail, chances are he is out of town for the weekend or
the holliday. If he is not there: he cannot delete your messages. This is not the best time to attack the sysop, as he will most asuradly read his mail once he gets back, and will be paying extra attention to any changes since he was gone. If you would like to play hit and run, while he is on vacation, while sticking to one alias, rape his board with massive loads of information. Once he gets back-- go on `vacation' for a week of so after.
WHY NOT TO FLAME: it is a pain in the butt if ANYONE finds out your real ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ name. If the sysop is cool, you will be wrong in doing
whatever you say, but then he may be BAD. You may also find that the flame will mean more than anything else.
WHY TO FLAME: it is about the only way that people will read your opinions. ~~~~~~~~~~~~ It is very hard to ignore a board-wide or NET-wide flame war.
It is also the ultimate in publicity if you run a BBS (trust me-- everyone that is on my net and reads VANPORT knows who I am, and what my BBS is) what they hear may not be too cool, but they will eventualy if THEY are good users (to seek adventure).
do not alter, add or remove any portion of this text without written permission from the Author.. yeah– that's right!
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