Trawl vs Troll
Posted: 09 September 2007 11:41 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Can someone please tell me if these two words are synonyms of each other in the context of fishing?

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Posted: 10 September 2007 03:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I consider them to be different: trawling is dragging a net through the water, while trolling is dragging a baited line through the water.

Wikipedia seems to agree with me, but I have no access to OED until tomorrow so the irrefutable argument from etymology will have to wait :)

As an aside: in my NZ pronunciation these are quite different words, and I’m curious as to whether they are homophonous for those poor souls amongst us who suffer from the “cot/caught” merger?

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Posted: 10 September 2007 05:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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The OED concurs. Trawling is dragging a net; trolling is trailing a baited line.

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Posted: 10 September 2007 06:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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There’s a coincidence! I’ve just been having a debate with my editor over one of our contributors who wrote about ‘trolling’ the (inter)net. My editor thought he meant ‘trawl’ I argued that he’d written exactly what he meant to write. Though there is more difference in the internet sense - to my ears ‘trolling’ is specific bit of net jargon whereas ‘trawl’ is a general word that can be applied in the same sense as the fishing sense.

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Posted: 10 September 2007 01:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I’ve heard both words used in an internet sense. Trolling is using bait to see who will take it. Trawling is gathering information in the sense of doing wide searches and hoping to catch something relevant in the process.

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Posted: 10 September 2007 09:19 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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OED’s amendment dated June 2006 lists the internet meaning of troll.  And the OED latest on trawl:

ADDITIONS SERIES 1993

trawl, v.

Add:  [1.] d. intr. fig. To engage in an exhaustive or extensive (sometimes indiscriminate) search for something; spec. to search for a suitable candidate by sifting through a large number.

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