This is an encounter for the editing game we're putting together. Visit this forum thread to join the fun.
A spiny puffer fish bobs up and down in the air in front of your head, glaring and shouting.
Flame Bait can be dropped by both inexperienced editors and trolls alike. Flame Bait screams highly controversial, rude, and often pointless statements in otherwise healthy wiki articles. The Flame Bait’s calls inevitably attract Trolls, Natter, and Bile. Flame Bait are clear violations of the Rule of Cautious Editing Judgment- 99% of this wiki is not looking for a fight.
“Um, what are you?” you ask. “Hell, can you even talk-“
"RELIGION IS BULLSHIT!” the ball screams. “OBAMA SHOULD NEVER HAVE WON THE 2008 ELECTION! THIS WAR WAS COMPLETELY JUSTIFIED! THIS MOVIE SUCKS! THIS MOVIE IS SO BAD IT’S GOOD! THIS MOVIE IS SO BAD IT’S HORRIBLE! THIS BOOK IS FULL OF NARM, AND OTHER SUBJECTIVE TROPES!”
The Flame Bait continues to yell, but this time, you drop to the fetal position and cover your ears. “Good god,” you murmur. “What is this?”
In the distance, you see large, lumbering figures moving closer and closer to your position- the Trolls are coming. Behind you, the forest suddenly catches fire- the flames are coming, fueled by personal attacks and immature ranting, seething an air of superiority and smugness. To your left and right, an inexorable wall of black approaches- Bile, made by the Greater Demons of Hate, the sworn ally of the Flamers and Trolls. The Bile advances, bringing with it the stench of offensive slurs and phrases, directed at both editors, authors...
You are surrounded.
You realize that now, you must act. You must defend the Tao of Trope, fight to preserve your wiki and your honor, and fulfill your duty as a troper.
What do you do?
- You delete the Flame Bait.
- You respond to the Flame Bait, and attempt to reason with it.
- Incensed at the Flame Bait’s insensitivity, lack of knowledge about the wiki’s rules, and overall rudeness, you decide to type out a long, lengthy response to the Flame Bait, and post it on the wiki page
(You delete the Flame Bait.)
Reaching down into your holster, you draw the Wiki Eraser. “Get some,
” you hiss, unloading your Eraser onto the Flame Bait.
The erasing beam slams into the Flame Bait, shattering it. Bits and pieces of the Flame Bait shower over you, yet the deed has been done. The Trolls, deprived of the Flame Bait, retreat, and the Flames and Bile crawl back to their demonic masters.
Your work here is done. Yet elsewhere, there may still be more work to do. You know now from this encounter that Flame Bait is “shoot on sight.” Throughout your travels, you may encounter many more Flame Baits, scattered throughout the wiki. Make sure to destroy them.
(You respond to the Flame Bait, and attempt to reason with it.)
“Look here,” you say, approaching the flame bait. “Can’t we just get along? And anyways, Obama had some good points, and this movie was actually pretty good-“
And then, as thunder crashes and lightning singes the sky, you realize what a terrible mistake you have made. You have been baited. You have angered the Wiki Gods. The article the Flame Bait is in has been doomed.
The Flame Bait screams out another response at you. Meanwhile, Trolls, Flames, and Bile dog pile you, hurling obscenities at each other, at other editors, at writers, animators, and artists alike. The article is consumed. This is the end.
The last thing you see before your eyes close for the last time is your fellow tropers, scrambling to fix the page.
(Incensed at the Flame Bait’s insensitivity, lack of knowledge about the wiki’s rules, and overall rudeness, you decide to type out a long, lengthy response to the Flame Bait, and post it on the wiki page.)
Well, this Flame Bait could certainly learn a couple lessons about the way TVTropes works. Readying yourself, you prepare your strongly worded reply.
“What an immature brat,” you sneer. “Do you seriously go around writing this stuff on wiki pages? Do you have any life?”
As you continue to ramble on, you forget about the advancing horde. Who cares about them? This Flame Bait needs to know exactly how stupid it is. “Come on, you dumbass,” you continue. “Are you honestly this stupid?”
And then you realize- you have committed two cardinal sins. You have nattered. You have launched into a personal attack- no better than the Flame Bait itself. As your head spins from the realization, you remember the words of your troping instructor- suffer not a natterer to live.
“Forgive me, Eddie, for I have sinned,” you whisper. You stumble away from the article, and fall sobbing to the ground. Perhaps you may be redeemed.
Perhaps you shall not be.