“He seemed to want to be glorified for his ability to be right, not quantify his method. It wasn’t a battle with anyone in the group, it was with himself. I don’t think he had the emotional maturity to use mindfulness to have that discussion with himself. Not faulting him, but it’s much easier to cling to delusions than admit you’re wrong. I’m speaking from my experience on that one.” -Matthew Smith

If you have been on social media long enough, you have probably run into Internet trolls. They are energy vampires and add no value to the conversation. Here are a few types that I have had the (dis)pleasure of meeting:

  1. Mr. “It’s Complicated”: This trader loves to have the most complicated and elaborate charts with as many signals as possible. He has the most complex trading method imaginable, and he needs it all: macro economy, currencies, unemployment, inflation, theories, graphs, charts, volume, option chains, “big hands”, “small hands”, open interest, FED minutes, and on and on.
  2. Naive Trader: This is the newbie trader that wanders into a group of seasoned traders and begins educating others on what they learned in college. They think they are experts in trading, although they have yet to trade any account worth more than a few thousand dollars. Their naivete makes them primarily a danger to themselves because they don’t know what they don’t know.
  3. The Permanent Bear or Bull: No matter what the market is doing, this troll is uber bearish or uber bullish, all the time no matter what. They watch and wait, twisting the facts to meet their storyline. The first time it looks like they are right, they gloat relentlessly until they are wrong again.
  4. The Flame Throwing Troll: This guy likes to cause drama and frustrate others for his own amusement. If nothing particularly nasty is going on, he’ll whip out his flamethrower and burn everyone in his path.
  5. The Whiny Baby Troll: If someone corrects, questions, or points out flaws in their reasoning, this troll will become hysterical and swear they are leaving the group never to return. Of course, you’ll see them three days or three months later.
  6. The Infinity Troll: This troll is ALWAYS right and will waste all the time you want to prove it. There’s no point in trying to fight them. If they can’t back something up with reality, they will just make something up.
  7. THE ALL CAPS TROLL: This troll tries to use all caps to somehow give their writing more credibility. They think that all capital letters makes the invalid thing they are saying suddenly valid and urgent. This has been disproved.
  8. The Master Trader that Never Ever Loses, Ever: This troll knows everything about everything. He can, and does, instantly expound on any chart in any market, macro conditions, options, futures, and Forex because he has mastered them all.  He has a special affinity for sharing pictures of luxurious homes and expensive cars.
  9. The Drive By: This ever elusive troll posts spam on social media, often trying to sell something, doesn’t interact with anyone and then vanishes.
  10. Mr. Make Believe: An imaginary online persona, this troll uses fake information to build the online life they wish they had. They hide behind imaginary accounts and trades, never admitting that it is all make believe.

[Tweet “Ignorance and arrogance flee at the sight of its own shadow.”]