I’ve posted a short how to on responding to Internet trolls at Medium:
So, you’ve been attacked by trolls? Here’s what to expect: Your phone will vibrate incessantly with Twitter mentions. You’ll receive angry, obscenity filled emails and anonymous comments on your blog. Bloggers will take you out of context (a columnist at The Guardian compared me to a mass murderer — seriously). And maybe, you’ll receive an inappropriate package at your home as I did.
It’s easy to attack people on the Internet. Critics can act out against you at a distance “safe” for them without having to see how it makes you feel. They can say things in an instant that they would never say to you in person or in public. Twitter, especially, is a particularly easy venue for reactive people to react angrily. It’s simple to retweet or favorite a harassing tweet without reflecting on how this triggers notifications that impact an actual person.
Don’t be surprised if you feel anxiety symptoms similar to what you’d feel if accosted in the real world. When someone tweeted that I was an “abusive sh*tbag” to their ten thousand followers, my heart raced, I felt a sense of fear and I slept restlessly. I’ve even noticed small physiological responses when notifications alert me to someone favoriting a harassing tweet.
Above image: “Cancel all my meetings, someone on the Internet is wrong.” — SomeECards