Matt Forney
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The Manosphere vs. the Mainstream: Producers vs. Parasites

I was putting the finishing touches on a lengthy two-part post to go up at the end of the month when I had a minor epiphany.

The manosphere is primarily comprised of producers, while feminists and the mainstream media are largely parasites.

I don’t mean this in a Randroid sense; I’m talking about the very nature of our blogs. A few months back, in my article about the “death” of blogging, I wrote about the shrinking market share for “disposa-blogs” that are dependent on other peoples’ work. What I realized was that the reason for this was because the mainstream media already has the market cornered on short-term, low-value blogging. The vast majority of mainstream sites, whether it’s prestige media like ABC or New Media like Gawker, sustain themselves primarily by piggybacking on other peoples’ content.

Contrast this with the manosphere, which in many ways functions as its own self-contained universe. The major ‘sphere blogs—Roosh’s, Return of Kings, NexxtLevelUpDanger & Play etc.—generally focus on creating content that derives from the author’s own experience and knowledge. We talk about our travels, share ideas that we’ve thought about and researched, discuss great works of literature and generally do stuff that requires education, life experience and work to write. Even when we use someone else’s work in our posts, it’s as a jumping off point for ideas we’ve already worked out on our own.

Our adversaries don’t do any of this.

Just scan JezebelGawkerxoJane or any mainstream site. Anywhere from 80-90 percent of their posts consist of whining about someone or something else. Their writers don’t come up with ideas of their own and they don’t have experiences worth writing about. They don’t read books and don’t discuss anything other than trashy pop culture. They don’t use other peoples’ work to develop original thoughts; all they do is snark at and denounce them with nauseating self-satisfaction.

In particular, all mainstream sites do is fisk content. Fisking is something that I used to engage in but have become increasingly disgusted with. Replying to someone else’s article in a line-by-line denunciation is not only obnoxious to read (the very way fisking works demands you comment on everything in the article, even things that don’t merit a response), it’s massively presumptuous as well. Virtually all fiskings proceed from the point of view that a) the person you’re attacking is reading it and b) they give a shit about your opinion. I’ve occasionally read feminists’ line-by-line denunciations of my articles, and all of them are personally addressed to me in a confrontational “Whatchoo gonna do ’bout it, nigga?” tone, laughable seeing as I wouldn’t even acknowledge losers like them in real life.

Feminists and the mainstream media are inherently reactionary in that they can only react to what other people are doing, not create anything of their own.

Take Manboobz, the ultimate reactionary blog. When David Futrelle started that site three years ago, he was a failed freelance writer whose biggest achievement in life was writing puff pieces for Money magazine. (Technically he still is a failed freelance writer, as evidenced by the fact that he has to hold donation drives every other month just to make rent.) He started Manboobz because he was desperate for attention and not talented enough to earn it based on his merit as a writer.

Manboobz and blogs like it are entirely sustained by the work of others. Futrelle has no original ideas and no intellect; all he does is glom off the labor of men and women more knowledgeable than him. His writing is shallow, never penetrating beneath the surface of the “misogynistic” articles he fisks, always staying in the kiddie pool of mockery and derision. He is a parasite, a remora attaching itself to the underside of fishes far bigger than he’ll ever be.

And were it not for the “woman-haters” he denounces, Futrelle would be out of a job.

That’s what makes the moral outrage from JezebelBuzzfeed and the like ring completely false; they need us in order to stay in business. If all the evil racists and misogynists like myself died tomorrow, what would they write about? The latest episode of Girls? That’s why the left is constantly inventing new social ills out of whole cloth (“ableism,” “fatphobia,” “transphobia” etc.); without a steady supply of heretics to burn at the stake, their very existence is threatened.

This also makes the mainstream media ludicrously easy to manipulate.

Ryan Holiday wrote about this in his book Trust Me, I’m Lying; journalists and professional blog writers are lazy and unwilling to do their homework. Dangle a bit of red meat in their faces and they gobble it up like a starving Ethiopian. In fact, the MSM has become so desperate for material that they seek out crimethinkers who aren’t even looking for attention, as I’ve found out myself.

Whenever an “offensive” manosphere article goes viral, there’s always a few voices of reason who caution people to ignore it or “don’t feed the trolls.” Their warnings always go unheeded because not only does ignoring the manosphere violate the left’s directive to kill/maim/threaten anyone who causes them narcissistic injury, the mainstream media’s very business model is built around manipulating leftist narcissism for profit. When Gawker designates a new Emmanuel Goldstein for their priggish readers to rage against, they aren’t just doing it out of a sick moral compulsion, they’re doing it for money, because their writers are so vapid they can’t maintain their website without clinging to someone else’s taint.

And this business model will lead to their downfall.

A couple months back, Maddox posted a blistering takedown of BuzzFeed, which represents the logical conclusion of the MSM’s content-free, parasitical business model. BuzzFeed’s articles are designed to be as lightweight and dumbed-down as possible, designating lynch mob targets without even writing or commenting on them, just posting animated GIFs. Beyond the fact that every BuzzFeed listicle is wiping its ass with copyright laws, as Maddox points out, the site’s formula is so simple and stupid that anyone can copy it and put BuzzFeed out of business.

That’s the problem with the reactionary business model of the mainstream media; anyone can do what they do, thus anyone could potentially overtake GawkerxoJane et al. and consign them to the scrap heap. That’s another reason why leftist sites are constantly trying to out-victim each other by inventing new “-isms” and “phobias” to rail against: to stay one step ahead in the Outrage Olympics. Being anti-misogynist isn’t enough anymore; now you have to be against cissexism as well! Opposing homophobia is so 2006; attacking transphobia is all the rage now! When you join the Pity Party, you’re stuck in a never-ending game of one-upsmanship, where the loser ends up mercilessly crushed between the tank treads of progress!

There is a way to avoid this, however: actually write original content that people want to read.

This is why I’m not worried about the future of the manosphere or whatever. I’ve proven time and time again that my writing is good, intelligent and that people want to read it. I’ve acquired a large readership precisely because I produce original articles, books and the like that can’t be found anywhere. I don’t need to rely on my enemies to propel my brand; I can do it on my own.

And so long as I keep producing quality content, I will always have an audience.

That’s the key to survival as a writer or artist; create content. If you rely on other people to do the heavy lifting for you, you will be left out in the cold. The future belongs to those strong enough to forge their own paths.

P.S. I have a new book dropping on Friday. Check back then for details.

Read Next: When ABC Met the Manosphere… and Me

  • I hadn’t heard the term “fisking” before, but it makes sense now. I’ve always been annoyed by people who have to do a line by line “refutation” of somebody else.

    I remember back in elementary school, when for homework I would have to answer questions by summarizing the question in the answer, ex. “What color is the sky? The sky is blue”. It seemed like a pain in the ass to me at the time, but I know understand why they made me do it: so I can be a good enough writer to not have to “fisk” like the mainstream writers.

    I’ve considered Gawker the kiss of death to any website acquisition. I remember when Lifehacker was cool, relevant, and interesting. Once Gawker bought it, the quality of the content was reduced to “How to change your Windows desktop wallpaper”, “How to work a light switch”, and “Remember to breath”. I unsubscribed years ago.

  • baguazhang

    Victimhood is an industry. Without complaining, what else remains of leftism?

    Fisking is basically how 14 year old girls deal with conflict. Tells you something about American society, doesn’t it?

  • Exactly.Nailed! Well done,Matt.

  • What you describe *is* the Randian sense.

  • Rotten

    Matt, what you are describing is a good thing.

    See in the past, it was concerned conservatives who would notice something, denounce it, and, by doing so, elevate that something to the national dialogue.

    Fox News tool Bill O’Reilly built a lucrative career on exactly this: find something outrageous and profit from the outrage. Nevermind that his huge platform just mainstreamed whatever he criticized.

    This is your “in,” to the national dialogue.

  • Women Produce children…

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  • Mina

    Here’s a great example from today:
    I left a link to here over there.

  • AnonymousBosch

    I noted this on the RVF a while ago, and it’s worth repeating:

    The Universal Declaration of Human Rights by The United Nations:

    Note point (2) of Article 27.

    “(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.”

    Every Buzzfeed article with a sassy Jennifer Lawrence or snarky Mean Girls gif used as punctuation is violating the human rights of everyone involved in the production of the creative work.

    The Social Justice Crowd will never recognise this, because of the reasons you outline above: they’re uncreative, unthinking individuals who need to ignore copyright violation to fuel their desperate media consumption habits, because they’re incapable of doing anything but unquestioningly-adopting dictated thought, or reacting against those who do form their own opinion about things.

    It’s why internet art and music is so currently godawful: pictures of Morrisey in the style of Dick Bruna; Game of Thrones mashed up with The Smurfs; The Walking Dead as a 90’s family drama. No original though in their heads, just a combination of two or more things they’ve passively-consumed.

  • I just went on Manboobz for the first time in a while… what I’m really surprised about is how those unoriginal articles all seem to get like 400 comments each from the same 6-7 people that always devolve into something about cats. Oh well. Stay up, you’re doing good work!

  • While I mostly agree, there is a time and place for everything. In the case of fisking, it does matter if the author is right or wrong. And it also matters whether the original material is important or not. There are cases where a well done fisking can take a rising idea and put it in the dustbin where it belongs.

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  • Jan in Alberta

    So looking forward to the leftist ‘fisking’ of this article. The shower of propelled spittle will be glorious. lol

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  • MattW

    I’m with you about three-quarters of the way. The online feminist-sphere is absolutely a group of leaches. However in all of the gender studies and women’s studies and sociology and psychology departments around North America I’m sure there are plenty of feminists who are producing stuff. Not that I think that stuff is useful, but there is a productive subset there.

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  • Robert

    Very pithy article. It also can be applied to society at large. Parasites are a part of life for every organism – and society is an organism. Things generally work out as long as the number and strength of the parasites don’t overwhelm the host. If that happens the host and the parasites die. Our society seems to be getting close to that tipping point where the host is in danger of being overwhelmed by the parasites: whether they are hipster slackers on food stamps, or crony capitalists or government bureaucrats (particularly the unionized kind). One would think that some of the parasites would realize the danger to themselves if the host dies or becomes too weak to produce, but honestly, I don’t believe they think that deeply.

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