|Original Photograph from Archives|
This following quote from host Leo Laporte gives a succinct example of how online communities begin, the role they can serve, and how they end:
The WELL was a... very early social network. It was started by The Whole Earth catalog folks. And it was a wonderful community. It descended, like every Internet community does, into flame wars, baiting, and trolling... I think it might still be around – but it's not in the same form...
Copyright infringement and trolling are two sides of the same coin. But currently, more people have criminal convictions for [willfull] copyright infringement [by for-profit websites] than trolling by orders of magnitude.
- Leo Laporte (Yale), This Week In Tech.