Monday, April 5, 2010
One half of one percent of commenter handles, 80, belong to an elite group. They are handles each associated with over 1000 comments posted throughout the lifetime of HA.org. I posted the top 10 a while back.
Browsing the list of 80.. All the names are quite familiar to me, troll and hero alike, and as the picture above shows, they account for over 62 percent of the comments posted. They represent HA.org's hard-core community of political junkies and hanger-ons and they include the most dedicated and unrepentant of right wing trolls.
A somewhat broader community of 306 handles have posted somewhere between 100 and 999 comments each but they only account for a little over 22 percent of all comments. Quite a few of them may one day soon pass the 1000 mark. Many of them enjoy participating in the HA brouhaha but are either fairly new to it, have dropped away or HA is far from a priority for them.
A modestly more numerous bunch have posted between 10 and 99 comments. I speculate that many of them are again new to the community or they may have started, felt lost in the crowd (or disgusted) and then quickly dropped away.
Lastly there's a very interesting group to me. They account for over 88 percent of the 15,078 handles recorded and yet each handle accounts for fewer than 10 comments over the life of the blog. Quite a few of them if not most of them for sure are just spammers. Many others are just hit and run commenters, responding to a provocative blog post that's gotten some traction in the wider blogosphere and elsewhere.
But this group also contains some of the most vicious, nasty and vindictive trolls of all.
This group includes the HNMT and members of The Hit Squad.
Late thought: the big lesson to draw is that if I concentrate on 1,748 handles and tag them, then I've in turn categorized over 94 percent of the comments. Pretty useful little report. And I just picked the brackets on a hunch.
Bit of an update: The 88 percent group of handles mentioned above also includes a lot of people making fun of the trolls by doing a variation on their handle. Goldy calls his comment threads "the cesspool". Sue me, I'm a part of it. But this 88 percent group of handles which accounts for less than 6 percent of all the comments I call "the swamp". There's some fun to be had there but only as long as you don't wade in for too long.