Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Coffee Party Troll

A few days ago, I joined the nascent Coffee Party USA, which was founded by Annabel Park and in less than a week has attracted over 60,000 members. The purpose of the party is to foster a return to civil discussion of issues in politics - as opposed to the screaming, hatred and vitriol which is the hallmark of the Teabaggers. It is a grassroots effort to get corporate influence out of Washington, which distorts the debate about everything from health care to climate change by allowing deep coffers to buy our politicians like whores. The goal is to return democracy to the citizenry.

Last night I got an email from a concern troll, which for those of you who don't know, is an anonymous commenter who pretends to have genuine skepticism on a particular topic but whose real purpose is to waste your time and sow misgivings about empirical facts by spouting lies and disinformation, or cast doubt upon credibility through character attacks. You see it all the time on blogs about climate change. There is a suspicion that at least some of these concern trolls are being paid to follow serious discussions on the internet and to then attempt to hijack the conversation, because they often read as though they are following identical scripts originating from rightwing thinktanks, spokesman, and shills.

Another very disturbing trend is the campaign to encourage direct assaults on individual scientists by sending them hate mail via the internet as documented in this article, "The Rise of Anti-Science Cyber Bullying."

The messages I received have the same hallmarks of a deliberate, orchestrated campaign, in this case, to derail the Coffee Party by attacking Annabel Park. Looks like the notion of returning power to the electorate has some major interests a bit worried, and this juvenile attempt to smear Annabel smells of pure desperation. I very much doubt the poseur who sent me this bile put together all those links alone, and the entire tone is of a labored, manufactured "campaigns galore!" cheery friendliness, replete with misspelled folksy "recieved" (sic). The sentence in (what I hope is) the last message, which states, "That is my only concern" is a blatant, big fat lie!

Here's the exchange:


I am addressing this email after deciding at the poor structure of the Coffee Party to do my own research. I was told by Annabel directly that she had no experience in grassroots, or campaigns. This was all so "new" to her. She didn't know what to do, where to go, and needed help.She had NO experience in this. I found out today, that is all a lie. She has a huge history in the media. This was not the first time she had been in Washington Post. She used to work for the New York Times. She has been on Anderson Cooper and Fox. She has been a coordinator for other grassroots movements and non grassroots. She is a known activist. She has inside connections with large mainstream media entities, and worked for Obama for America. She has done campaigns galore! She has way more experience than she claims to. She speaks and teach people how to create grassroots movements. And by the way I recieved all of your information off of their public google doc that is available to everyone. You can make your own decision! They title her as a concerned citizen.

I was lied to, I don't know about you.... I was told this was non-partisan group but you can see how non-partisan she has been. (she appears on the show) (Look at the top logo) (Java Jive) (9:45-11:15) (Friend on Facebook)

Yeah, No experience Annabel...... And this isn't all....

Re: Update

Tuesday, March 2, 2010 8:48 PM
"Coffee Party"
I'm delighted that Annabel has experience! She seems to me to be very smart, very well spoken. I wish her all the success in the world! Thank you for making me aware of how very well qualified she is to lead a movement that will revolutionize the way politics is conducted in this country.

We need to get the corporate influence out of our government!

Yes, I'm glad she does too. But why did she lie to us? I've asked her point blank what her experience is she didn't failed to mention any of that. She told me she had no experience. I'm just worried about why she lied to us. She was a strategy analyst for the New York Times studying how people form grassroots organizations. If that had been known I wouldn't feel lied to, but that wasn't stated upfront.

That is my only concern.


  1. "I was told by Annabel directly that she had no experience in grassroots, or campaigns. This was all so "new" to her. She didn't know what to do, where to go, and needed help.She had NO experience in this."

    That is a classic quote from a concern troll - a lie couched in terms that favour the troll.

    I've only come across such beings recently and they are vile. For people who just arrive on the scene they try to appear as a mix of concern and naivety.

    It took me a few days to figure out what was going on with one particular exchange I had on a forum. Shortly after I had them pegged I came across Eli Rabbet's post on concern trolls. I now respond very differently to the way I used to. It's best to ignore them as they are like any troll in that they crave attention. Sometimes they slip up and show their true colours and that's when you can nab them :D

  2. Richard (not a troll) PauliMarch 3, 2010 at 5:55 PM

    I am now forced to entertain the notion that sometime in the early 80's we were invaded by pods just like in "Invasion of the Body Snatchers." And they have been living among us ever since - provoking unwise behavior and sabotaging our future so they can have it all for their....pods.

    (only half joking)

  3. Just wait for the zombie attack, if you thing the Body Snatchers were can choose your weapon here:

  4. Not a zombie eitherMarch 3, 2010 at 7:40 PM

    Gasp, the spores, choke... gag. Sputter

  5. i am not concerned about the research about who better to help start a grassroots org that one who has studying about it

  6. I like the warning another blogger has posted right above his comments section: "Do not feed the trolls. It goes straight to their thighs."


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