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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.

INSERT #1:

   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: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  1. 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.
  1. 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).
  1. AGISM: everyone knows that adults are fascist pigs, so remind

the entire BBS a few times.

  1. 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: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  1. 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.
  1. 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
    1. read a bunch of messages, find one that offers

flame possibilities.

  1. post
  2. post
  3. post
  • Logoff

[wait for 12 hours or 24 hours.. depending if it is NET'd]

  • Call back
    1. read
    2. post
  • 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.

MISC tips:

  1. never get mad
  2. never try to impersonate someone
  3. never use your real name or number
  4. always keep a GOOD user on every BBS
  5. never form an alliance with ANYONE
  6. 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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