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Ken M: The internet troll named as one of Time's most influential people online

Ken M has been exasperating commenters for years 

Heather Saul
Friday 18 March 2016 15:10
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You may be familiar with Ken M in the comment sections of Yahoo
You may be familiar with Ken M in the comment sections of Yahoo

An online troll once declared "the Rembrandt of Yahoo trolling" has been named as one of Time magazine's most influential people on the internet.

Kenneth McCarthy, or Ken M as he is better known, has become infamous for the poorly written comments he leaves underneath news stories and articles. But unlike the trolls who are synonymous with the darker, aggressive side of the internet, Ken M has become something of an online celebrity and even has a Reddit AMA thread tracking his comments under headlines such as “Ken M on the Clooneys” and “Ken M on pie”.

“There are trolls haunting every comments section on the Internet, but none are as beloved—or perhaps, as prolific—as Kenneth McCarthy,” writes Time.

McCarthy says his aim is to transform "toxic spaces" such as comment sections into spaces of “belly laughter” by exasperating other commenters with his completely misinformed, apparently totally uneducated responses. He describes himself as a “professional dirt pig” on his Facebook page, where he now has a burgeoning following of over 40,000.

Comments include his response to a story about Curiosity rover taking pictures on Mars by suggesting it “refrain from sight-seeing and stick to its job” and adding underneath a baked potato recipe “also you get more vitamin if you eat the shell”. On a Bloomberg article entitled: “Peak everything - why everything costs more”, he replied: “When I was a kid a dollar was worth ten dollars - now a dollar couldn’t even buy you fifty cents”.

Upvoted claimed to track down the real Ken M to Brooklyn, New York, where he works as a copywriter for Comedy Central.

“I wasn’t that internet savvy. I didn’t even know what trolling was,” he said. “I just started doing it. I thought, ‘I wonder how idiotic I can be, but still be believable.’ It turned into this weird exercise.”

“Yahoo has the most beautifully gullible people. The people on Huffington Post are humorless and pedantic. I tried it with Fox News, but that group is such a furious wasp nest.”

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