What Would You Do If You Came Face To Face With Your Internet Trolls?

28 January 2016, 17:08 | Updated: 8 May 2017, 17:09

em ford
Katie Louise-Smith

By Katie Louise-Smith

'Troll Hunters' was an important conversation we needed to have.

If you had the opportunity to come face to face with one of your internet trolls, would you? YouTuber Em Ford, from mypaleskinblog did exactly that on BBC3's Troll Hunters documentary. 

Last July, she posted this video highlighting cyber abuse and bullying online - as of today, it has over 18 million views. If you're not familiar with it, take a minute now - we'll wait!


The BBC3 documentary, that aired on January 27, focused on Em's history with harassment and the rise of online abuse in Britain. The doc helped victims track down and unmask their anonymous internet trolls face to face, and gave them a chance to ask them why they continue to harass people online.

Maybe the most interesting argument that stood out in the documentary was one that many of your fave internet stars might disagree with. Em met with Milo Yiannopoulus, or as he describes himself, 'the most fabulous super villain on the internet', and she asked him advice on how to deal with internet trolls as seen in the video below.

'Toughen up'? And 'Learn how to laugh it off'? Some might argue they are very valid points but in a world that relies on social media - it's unrealistic. For some people, switching off completely is not an option. And for those that have already been subject to harassment, it might have already gone too far.

But for a lot of people, it can go very very wrong and even though these may be funny comments, to the person receiving them, they might not be a joke. And I think that’s really important to remember.

Em Ford, Troll Hunters.

Em visited a mother whose daughter took her own life after being tormented by online teen abusers, and also met with writer Louise Mensch who managed to confront her 40-year-old male harasser. In both cases, neither abuser showed any kind of remorse from their actions - and that's a terrifying thing. Would you be willing to sit down and have an honest conversation with your apathetic troll?

As internet trolling becomes an increasingly prevalent and dangerous phenomenon, it’s an area in dire need of serious conversation – and Troll Hunters kick started a great discussion surrounding the topic.

So, do you think Milo was right, or do we need to start developing serious punishments for all online abusers?