Seeing as discussions have begun about trolls, it's as well we all have a common definition to work with.
The author is "a forensic psychologist having spent the last 20 years working with criminal, addicted, psychopathological and cybercriminal minds..."
I recommend the site from which this definition has been extracted.. Internet Troll Defined
An Internet Troll is a colloquial expression used to define an online user who uses Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to purposely and actively provoke, defame, anger, tease, flame, or incite other online users.
More often than not, the Internet Troll does not know the target recipient(s) of their vitriolic statements and behaviors.
Internet Trolls regularly appear in all forms of online mediums ranging from online video gaming gatherings to chatroom and forum discussions.
When the Internet Trollís inflammatory statements and actions do not include a direct or implied physical threat to the target(s), their behavior is categorizes as cyber harassment.
If the Trollís verbal assaults include direct or implied physical threats to their target(s), their actions are then defined as cyberstalking.
The motivations for an Internet Trollís provocative, and often times, bizarre behaviors are numerous.
Despite the variations in modus operandi,
the vast majority of Trolls are seeking attention, recognition, stimulation pseudo-notoriety and retribution for some unknown perceived injustice.
Although there is no hard evidence or clinical research validating the psychology of the Internet Troll, it is commonly believed that the ďVeil of AnonymityĒ afforded to every online user inspires some to engage in egregious behaviors.
Those who have begun to investigate the etiology of the Troll suggest that the anonymity of the internet contributes to what has been called, disinhibition effect.
It has been postulated that internet anonymity leads some to behave in asocial ways coupled with a lack of guilt or remorse for the harm they cause not being in the targetís physical presence or even knowing their identity.