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White Hat Troll Guidelines

Updated: Oct 19

This is about the two rules, among others, with which white hat trolling may be measured or weighed.

Christopher Wylie. Photograph by Chatham House

Mental Models


First, white hat trolls are clear about their mental models, their philosophies.


This means white hat trolls need to be clear about their style of reflection or thinking, their intellectual presuppositions and, finally, their belief systems at large.

White had trolls have basic knowledge of how mental models affect everyone. Indeed, expected at some point in time, white hat trolls become experts at how mental models work.

Much has been said about mental models on a handful of occasions earlier in this blog site. Please go through them.

Everyone uses terms to refer to his concepts. Each term is, one way or another, connected to every other term via the rules of syntax of our languages. The end result of these connections is what can be referred to as some conceptual framework.

Everyone, thanks to his conceptual framework, is capable of constructing sentences, many of them rules or principles. Principles that everyone carries are connected to every other principle he knows via the rules of reasoning, rules of inference. The end result of these connections is what can be referred to as some theoretical framework — statements, principles, being treated as theories that are expected to be revised or rejected as one gains experience across time.

A mental model is a dynamic system with which everyone predicts what may or may not happen in the future. Conceptual frameworks and theoretical frameworks compose everyone’s mental model. These frameworks are constantly benchmarked against some collection of experience embedded in some memory, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Mental models give everyone the capacity to have control over his future. The more accurate one’s prediction, the more one can adjust accordingly, the more control he has.


Contradictions in one’s mental model present occasions of confusion. From a contradiction, one can imply any statement whatsoever. If Yao Ming is a dwarf, I must be Darth Vader.

Ergo, the need for attention to coherence that is itself a measure of how many contradictions one’s mental model contains. The more contradictions one carries, the less likely he gets his predictions on the dot. The less contradictions one carries, the more likely he gets his predictions on the dot. The less contradictions one carries, the more coherent his mental model is.


To be a white hat troll is to be someone who pushes for more control over the life of anyone on the basis of his own reasoning. Ergo, to be a white hat troll is to be someone who bats for everyone so he gets more reliable predictions, so that his mental model becomes more coherent.

CONTRADICTIONS


Second, white hat trolls are hypersensitive to contradictions, addicted to coherence.

Contradictions are pain points. They need to be overcome.


They are, however, also indicators of the possibility of creativity, the possibility of innovation or invention.


“Contradictions are pain points that indicate challenge. Someone produces a vacuum and lights up a candle. He observes that light can travel through a vacuum. Contradiction is noted. How can light travel through nothing? Same with electricity, how can electricity travel through nothing? In Physics, for example, such contradictions pose challenges to become creative. In this case of the behavior of light and the behavior of electricity, these have led to reinvention of the concepts of Physics as a discipline and has led to invention of Einsteinian Physics.” (This is from one of this author's books.)


Contradiction, in its most general sense, come in many forms. Contradiction per se. Paradox. Antimony. Anomaly. Irony. Bottomline, it confuses by way of ambiguity or vagueness.


Humans naturally react to contradictions. Reason why comedians employ it often in the form of verbal ironies or situational ironies. It, as a tool, is what is employed by the White Knight as he talks to Alice in Lewis Caroll’s Alice in Wonderland.


Contradictions as pain points, however, are not so familiar to many. For some cultures, for example, contradictions are mysteries to be embraced with faith.


It is the white hat troll’s most important tool, the concept of contradiction. It gives him the opportunity to tell anyone, something is wrong. Something is so wrong, it loosens one’s grip on his own future. Thanks to the white hat troll’s hypersensitivity to contradictions, he makes his readers laugh while at the same time calls attention to one’s loosening of his grip on the future.


With the invention by the Ancient Greeks of democracy, reasoning has come to be highlighted. As the Ancient Greeks have come to be more and more embroiled in debates, thanks to democracy, they have become addicted to debates. They have debated about everything and they have written about important occasions of debate -- students are required even today to read about these debates. Highlighting reasoning, the Ancient Greeks have ended up inventing natural philosophy that, later, has come to be reinvented as science.


In a similar fashion, white hat trolling highlights reasoning, coherence and awareness of one’s capacity to have a grip on his own destiny -- what being human is all about.


There is no need for white hat trolls to use hate speech and there is no need for him to lie, Identification of contradictions in someone's reasoning is more than enough. Entertaining and certainly helps the individual — helps society at large, too.


Kudos to the new net, new social media, heroes.

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