A football player turned boxer turned suddenly on an internet troll who mocked and goaded him after he lost a boxing match.
“The English boxer lost his country’s light welterweight title to Shayne Singleton on Friday. Two days later, a troll using the handle @jimmyob88 began taunting Woodhouse, calling him a “complete disgrace,” “laughable joke” and “waste of spunk.” Woodhouse initially replied with some trash talk of his own, then took matters into his own hands in a way not yet done by anyone in the sports world’s growing list of trolled pros.”
Instead of ignoring this person or blocking this person he instead took the fight to the troll.
Woodhouse then found out the street where the troll lived/lives:
This really got the troll’s attention who then responded with:
“Chill out pal i was only doing it so you would bite back it was only abit of harmless fun.”
Woodhouse posted more tweets that read:
There were more but I can’t be bothered to post them all and there really isn’t any need. I’ll post the link to the news article at the bottom where you’ll be able to see the screenshot of every tweet.
Needless to say this caught the attention of a lot of people, many of whom praised Woodhouse for calling out the person trolling him and in such a public fashion. Publicly embarrassing him in that way was a real turn around in time when a lot of people enjoy anonymously trolling people, especially celebrities, on twitter. Granted Woodhouse isn’t really a celebrity as such but the trolls target all sorts of people.
My take on all of this is that whilst I understand the methods he took to hit back I believe it was a step too far. I understand the reason and the motivation behind wanting to publicly expose a troll however it was a step too far to not only name the person but name their road as well. Although Woodhouse may have gone to the road but not the person’s house it still meant he was extremely close to the person shortly after claiming he was going to pay him a visit. I think we all know what he meant by that.
That sort of response encourages the mentality that it’s OK to track those people down and to physically threaten them or assault them. Although he didn’t actually do it others will have seen him go as far as tracking down the persons road and they too will believe it OK to track down a person who trolls them on the internet. Who knows how far that could go.
Had I been the troll in question I would not have apologised. It was pretty cowardly for that troll to then backtrack massively and to start apologising and grovelling. I have baited people on the internet before -note I say baited not trolled- and although I have never had someone track me down or try to track me down If anyone did start saying that they would do just that I would tell them to do it and I will be waiting with my baseball bat and with the police too. Because when you actually track someone down and go to their house then that crosses the line.
I’m not saying that it’s OK to troll people in a vicious or malicious way, however I believe that a bit of harmless trolling never hurt anyone. If any person does not like trolls then there are ways to ignore it. Block people, report them, or just ignore them. Publicly naming and shaming trolls is one thing and I’m certainly not against that, however what he did could lead others to copy him who might carry out assaults or perhaps seriously injure others.
No doubt Woodhouse will be heaped with more praise by many, however caution is definitely required, as is patience.