Matt Forney
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A Champagne Year with Sober Months

champagne

It was one year ago today that MattForney.com leapt into existence with a flash of lightning, a thunderclap and a lot of crying pussies. I’d say it was an amazing year, but… eh, fuck it.

This has been by far the strangest and most eventful year of my life—a year in which I hitchhiked from coast to coast, raised the ire of an international hacktivist group and became the most hated man in the Pacific Northwest, among other things—but the actual act of blogging is so routine for me at this point that having a site last for one year really isn’t much of an accomplishment. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have gotten to this point and thankful for all your support, but the feeling of elation isn’t there anymore.

First things first, I have another book coming out this Friday.

Trolling for a Living (title derived from a hilarious hater quote about me) is a best-of collection of my articles and essays published in the past year, both here and at Alternative RightReturn of Kings or wherever. In this 230-page book, I discombulate the men’s rights movement, shish kabob feminists, and encourage the youth of America to become civically irresponsible degenerates, among other things.

If you want my best work in a collectible, stylish format, perfect for taking into the bathroom or entertaining yourself on a long flight, you’ll want to grab this one quick.

As with my first book, for this weekend only you’ll be able to get both editions of Trolling for a Living for half-off: the e-book version will be only $4.49 while the paperback will be only $7.99. Per usual, the sale ends at midnight EST/9pm PST Sunday April 28th.

Secondly, in Confessions of an Online Hustler, I wrote that “on a long enough timeline, the chance of maintaining your anonymity online drops to zero.” Blog long enough and get popular enough and it will happen. Ergo, the choice you’re faced with ultimately is not whether you will write pseudonymously or not, but whether you will be open about who you are; if you don’t make the choice, someone else will make it for you, good or bad.

Therefore, I’ve decided to practice what I preach and reveal the biggest secret behind this blog: I am the man who used to write as “Ferdinand Bardamu.”

Yes, In Mala Fide, the site that doxed Julian Assange’s false rape accusers, was profiled as a “hate group” by the SPLC, and who basically helped create the manosphere by linking peoples’ blog posts and pissing off all the right people? That was my baby, all the way.

Most everyone of importance in this part of the web knows the truth, either because they figured it out on their own or because I told them, but I’m putting it out there for everyone else. I initially sought to keep things under wraps; when the truth started coming out around last August, my initial response was one of panicked defensiveness. Then I realized that not only did nobody give a fuck, they actually respected me more for a) going public and b) owning my shit.

The only people who would try to hang me with this knowledge are those who didn’t like me to begin with; why should I care what they think?

In any event, even if I hadn’t made the decision to go public, I would still have killed In Mala Fide: I was so indescribably sick of writing it. In Mala Fide began not long after my 21st birthday, when I was angry, frustrated and still looking for the answers. Raw anger is normal for a punk undergrad and sustainable for a year or two after graduation, but as I got further and further away from the conditions that spawned my online alter-ego, it became more and more difficult to keep up appearances. Surround yourself with the worst humanity has to offer and it will inevitably wear on you.

To put it simply, the “Ferdinand Bardamu” stage of my life is over, and no amount of ginning up fake rage at false rape accusers and antifas is going to bring it back.

I also wanted to kill IMF for more practical reasons; the transition to a multi-user format was a massive mistake on my part. I had no experience in managing projects like that and it showed. Crazy-gluing together a bunch of people with massively differing worldviews and handing over your site to people who are not… stable (not naming names, but you can figure out who I’m talking about) is not a recipe for long-term success. It got to the point where I dreaded reading my own site because it was becoming dominated by basement dwelling neo-Nazis, MRA permavirgins and other losers I would never bother with in real life.

As much as I hate people who bitch about “hatred” and “negativity,” they were right in the end: I didn’t want to be associated with those freaks.

The only way for me to go forward to was start all over again; burn everything to the ground and return under a new identity. I wasn’t about to toss a site that got 50,000 visitors a month away so casually though, so I used the last month of IMF to publish articles under my real name. My original plan was to moderate my writing (in tone, not content) and distance myself from the manosphere initially, but around June or so, I decided fuck it; it’s no fun fighting with one hand tied behind your back.

MattForney.com represents the next stage of my life, the stage where I’m more grounded in what I believe and more measured in what I write. Where I don’t simply rant about something stupid in the news, but write content that men will find useful and informative years down the road. I’m also pleased to see other blogs like Viva La Manosphere and Page for Men taking over the aggregation aspect of In Mala Fide.

Ironically, it took killing the blog—and meeting some of the guys who were influenced by it in person—to realize how important I was.

But I couldn’t have done it without you, the readers. As arrogant as I sound sometimes, I really do wonder how people can enjoy my writing without wanting to punch me in the face. It’s the adulation and praise that in part motivates me to keep going. As of this writing, MattForney.com has just shy of 10,000 visitors a month, roughly the same amount that In Mala Fide had in its first year of operation. The cream always rises to the top no matter what, apparently.

Thanks for reading and supporting me all these years, guys (and gals).

A few call-outs are in order:

Thanks to Roosh, Colin Liddell and Bill Price for publishing my articles.

Thanks to Keoni Galt, Aaron Clarey, Rollo Tomassi, Chuck Ross, Rob Fedders, Frost, Elusive Wapiti and other bloggers for promoting my site.

Thanks to Nate, Bronan, Jack Donovan, Trevor Blake, Davis Aurini, Suzy McCarley, Greg, Solo, Danny from 504, Ulysses Dr. Eric Stratton, Remy Sheppard, the Danger & Play admin, Tim @ Spootville and countless others for providing moral support. Special thanks to Bronan and everyone else who’s had to put up with my drunken ranting.

And thanks to everyone else I forgot (and I’m certain that I forgot a bunch of people, because I always do).

I have big plans for the near future. I can’t reveal what they are, only to say that I will be in the Midwest this summer and will be hitting California at the end of August. Thanks for being a part of everything, and stay tuned: it’s only going to get better.

Read Next: Re-Review: Around the World in 80 Girls: The Epic 3 Year Trip of a Backpacking Casanova by Neil Skywalker

  • Congrats on the milestone!

  • Congrats.

  • Awesome post! Keep up the good work!

  • Tim

    Cool.

  • AK

    Congrats, Matt!

    That you were Ferdinand Bardamu was certainly news to me. I had no idea. That said, I hadn’t been a regular reader or subscriber to IMF, so that’s not surprising.

    Best of luck on your forthcoming projects. I am looking forwards to reading your book on your hitch-hiking journey. And I’ll still probably be in California this August, so feel free to drop me a line closer to the time.

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  • Anon

    Wait, there were people out there who didn’t know you were Ferd? I thought you two sounded suspiciously alike when IMF was still up. Still, that website changed my fucking life. Thank you for all that you’ve done.

  • Suz

    Seriously? You’re Ferd? I see similarities, but it would never even occur to me to wonder. I would NOT have pegged Ferdinand for a brash college-aged “kid.” As Tim said – Cool.

  • raliv

    I figured you were Ferdinand Bardamu. You came on right as IMF was going out. Both from Upstate NY, both angry trolling sonsofbitches. My suspicions have been confirmed!

  • josephkay

    The fact that you were Ferdinand Bardamu took me completely by surprise. I never really liked _In Mala Fide._ It was just so bleak and venomous, and I was cheering for Ferd to break through to something else and not be Ferd anymore.

    I’ve enjoyed the current blog from the beginning. It struck me as an earnest guy trying to figure things out for himself. Also, there’s real journalism here. What’s it like to hitchhike across the country? What’s really going on in the Bakken? The people who experience these things can’t write or aren’t astute observers or just aren’t very smart. In fact, what I like about the blogosphere and the manosphere in particular, is watching generally smart people try to figure things out on their own.

    Anyway, I think you have a great future ahead of you. As much as I disliked _In Mala Fide_, it had an enormous impact on the manosphere and you have some real organizational and journalistic talents.

    I’d like to see more autobiographical posts. How did Matt Forney become Ferd and how did Ferd become Matt Forney again?

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  • Retrenched

    So you’re Ferd huh? Well I’ll be damned. You were one of the guys who got me hooked into the ‘sphere back in the spring of ’10 after I discovered it through The Misandry Bubble.

    Funny, when I read the first articles you published under your real name I thought you sounded a bit like a Ferd “rip off”, that you were trying real hard to write like “him”. And when IMF shut down I thought “Ferd” was bowing out because the SPLC heat was getting to be too much. I couldn’t have been more wrong about that. So…. yeah, count me as one of the ones who were too dumb to make the connection.

    Anyway, thanks for the work you put into your blogs, and best of luck to you in the future.

  • Theodore Logan

    As IMF was closing up shop and MF was going up, it was kind of a dead give away for the astute amongst us that your present site had the same set up and layout design style as IMF.
    To be honest, I actually enjoyed the chaos of the final months of IMF. It was like watching a microcosm of the apocalypse to come. I fully understand why you pulled the plug on that operation, but goddamn it was one of the most beautiful malevolent creations I’ve ever seen.

  • In Male Fide was a serious slap in the face to me when i first found the manosphere. I hated it at first. Being a woman coming in and reading the stuff there was an enormous slap in the face, but in the end, it help me a lot to see what was really going on with a lot of men and women in the world today. So, thank you for it.

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  • Glad you are back!

    IMF was one of the four pillars for my reading list.

  • dude, i had no idea. congratulations on the switch. i never got fully into IMF, i was more focused on actually learning game and learning to understand chicks and their cute, crazy ways haha, but it’s true, IMF was freaking legendary, and i remember whenever you would like to my old blog, i got tons of hits. you’re the man. will write more later.

  • For the sake of sentimental value let me call you FERD.Thank you: I learned a lot from writting in IMF; best days of my early blogging days, now I think I also found the niche I am more comfortable with. thanks for the revelation
    ¡Que tengas un buen viaje!

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  • Tiago Guerra

    Keep writing, Matt.

    It’s always a pleasure reading your words.

    You red pilled me in many, many, many ways.

    Thank you.

  • We were big fans back in the IMF days and still are.

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