How to Escape a Flame War

They're everywhere, and you've probably seen one at least once. Trolls and mean people who have absolutely no clue at all what they're talking about tend to start flame wars. It happens almost everywhere. You almost can't avoid the people themselves, but you can avoid conflict.


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    Try not to antagonize them. Believe it or not, a lot of flame wars aren't started by the trolls themselves, but by people that fall in to their traps. Flamers set traps, waiting for someone to fall into it. This is usually how most flame wars start, and it's usually only because the person is desperate for attention.
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    Try to get out of it before it gets bad. On most sites where one can happen, a flame war can get you and the other guy banned. Try to get out of the war early, or show no hostility. If you're not hostile, chances are you won't get in trouble. They're likely going to call you a wimp or coward or something along those lines. Just ignore it. Remember at all times that they're just doing it for attention.
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    Try to end it quickly. Sometimes a flame war is inevitable and unavoidable, but that doesn't mean you can't end it. No matter how much it seems as if it's their fault or seems like it makes you weak, calmly and nicely apologize, and let it be. Don't provoke them further, it just shows your gullible enough to stoop to their level and that you are no better than them.
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    Try to be friendly and nice. Whether you can or cannot end it, being non-hostile helps. It might even change them. If you end it and they pursue afterwards, it'll just make them look bad in the eyes of other and eventually others will take a stand.
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    Ignore their efforts. If you cannot stop them, ignore them. They can't do flame forever, and they'll eventually get tired of you not replying to their pleas for attention. If you can, try to put them on an ignore list if the place has one.
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    Get help if they won't stop after the above. Some people are such jerks, that even after you've done everything above, they'll still try to come after you. They aren't going to rest because they want to win and be seen as someone with power so they can command everyone else around. Even if you ignore them, some people are hardheaded to the point no matter what you try they will keep finding ways to keep on antagonizing you. Making multiple accounts, getting others involved, attempting to frame you: these are all things they would probably attempt. But chances are that if they try any of this it's against the site's rules, and if the site has moderators, tell the moderators what's going on.
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    Try to be seen as noble and respectable in the community. Stand up for others, help new people, and be noble and respectable. Chances are if you do you'll get flamed a bit more, but other people will take notice and sometimes take a stand for you.
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    If everything else fails, take a stand. Sometimes your only option left is to take a stand for yourself. If no one else will help you, and you've tried being a pacifist, this is your last choice. Don't go insane style on them, just be stern and strict. Be sharp and sophisticated. Their only reason left would be because they think your easy to walk over.


  • Remember the phrase "Never argue with an idiot. They bring you down to their level, then beat you with experience."
  • Don't become upset because of them. Remember they're doing it all for attention. You shouldn't feel upset over one fool's plea for attention.
  • Never fight until you need to.
  • Use the block facility if the site has one. This will allow you to block flamers, trolls etc. They won't be able to comment on your threads and posts and you won't be able to see theirs.


  • If there's a flame war between two people that provocative, antagonizing, or aggressive, don't step in. It's not worth it. Don't make the mistake they are making.
  • The type of people that flame others tend to have their own groups. They'll usually enlist others to try to do the job. Sometimes, one troll will have have multiple accounts (sockpuppets) to give the appearance of having more than one person in his/her group.
  • In a few rare cases, the community mods will start the flame war, or the mods with purposely will aid and abet one that is currently going on. When you see that happens, its time to find a new community. If the mods don't respect the time you and others are volunteering to put into the site, go find another site that is worth your time.
  • Don't go too far. Sometime this will get you in trouble instead.

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