Selling the MRM

The comments here often prove to have as much or more substance and relevance than the feature articles. They are also a vetting ground; a place where we hash out ideas and test their tensile strength under the pressure of heavy scrutiny.

As has happened before, the subject has once again surfaced regarding how we present this site and men’s issues to the mainstream world, especially as it relates to the desire to expand by having more average people embrace the agenda we serve.

All we have to do is figure out a way to overcome 3,000,000 years of human evolution, an equally longstanding tradition of male disposability, the past 50 years of demonizing anyone as a woman hating pig who disagrees with the feminist narrative and a general population of people programmed by their corporate masters to be so ignorant and disconnected that they spend more time worrying about their Cheese Covered Wacky Fries™ than the litany of civil rights that are being stripped away by feminist governance right under their ignorant noses.

So I think from the outset that we may need to question whether a broad reaching effort to appeal to these guys is in our best interest. In fact, I am betting the farm on the idea that this is not the way. I note that I encounter regular dissent to this notion, not only from Cheese Covered outlets like reddit (aside from the MRA’s there), but right here at home.

Reddit I could care less about, which was part of my point, but as we are still struggling with this at home, it rates an article from me.

Recently Keyster has questioned what he sees here, and expressed his concerns about how to introduce this site to the afore mentioned mainstream.  He is an insightful MRA asking important questions and making points that need to be addressed. Doing so affords me the opportunity to more fully explain our “marketing plan” for those that are not aware of it, and to explain why I offer Keyster’s perspective a respectful but less than exuberant reaction.

I am going to use a couple of clips from one of his comments, as well as offering him the opportunity to write and post a rebuttal to this piece. Yes, I do think it is that important.

First, we have this statement from Keyster:

IMHO the litmus test of a solid narrative is to be able to direct my neighbor or a friend to it and they’ll at least be able to grasp the basic assumptions. And then there’s the potential benefactor.

My response to this is simple. The litmus test of a solid narrative, especially given the overwhelming nature of our opposition, is whether it is getting any traction. Results, period. And those results cannot be measured one acquaintance at a time or in our gut level comfort with exposing “decent folk” to this crowd of misfits.

AVfM is now very, very close to becoming one of the top 100,000 websites on the world wide web. There will be ebbs and flows, but we will find a nesting place there without question. Indeed, over the last 30 days AVfM has had more traffic than Feministing.

My money is on the idea that along with the generally increased interest in men’s counter-theory, our strategy is the reason. In fact, I will be so bold as to say I know this to be the case.

We set out on a plan that breaks from old school marketing strategies (that have also become ineffective for mainstream organizations). Is anyone buying stock in print media, lately?

It was a given from the outset that this was going to be an internet based message. The only question was how that message would be delivered, and to whom.

Those questions were answered for me a long time ago in this video. If you have 15 minutes to spare, please watch it carefully.


I do not claim that it is the be all and end all of modern marketing, but every organization needs a guiding philosophy. And this concept – that of being remarkable and speaking to our own enthusiasts – is our plan. There is no other. We can neither be remarkable, nor speak credibly to our enthusiasts, with an eye on the mainstream and an ear listening to the admonishments and sensibilities of the people that represent the very problems we fight.

They need to come to us, not the other way around. I know, it’s counter-intuitive, at least until you look at our traffic trends.

We aim to speak directly to converts, and pretty much only converts, with the intent that our message would be spread through them, and that they would act as the benefactors to our operations.

So far, that is working, too. They have come through in spades and the support grows almost daily.  I am sure you have noticed a sharp influx of talent here as well.

Keyster also has concerns about the comments. I have to admit that I have shared those concerns on more than one occasion. Consider what he says here:

But when the first line of a comment reads, “As a group, women are weak and pathetic.”. There’s absolutely no way I’ll do that. In other words if I say “I’m a men’s rights activist and belong to an organization called “A Voice for Men”, there is no way in hell I’m directing them to this web site if they wanted to know more. Sadly, this isn’t the place for that.

I am tempted to be snarky here and ask Keyster if he refuses to refer people to a Times article because some of the comments there come from actual nut cases, but that would be avoiding the point.

He is saying. I think, that pitching this message is hard enough and we are sunk the moment a fence sitter comes in here and reads something like that.  Now in that case, I did down vote the comment and express my disagreement with it, but that is not really the point, either.

Remember our plan does not involve selling the MRM to fence sitters. Watch the video. Absorb it. Our plan does not require us to be concerned with individuals that will go into the comments and say, “Gee, I better disregard everything on this website because some dude named The Chartreuse Fly said something silly or stupid in the comments.”

Undoubtedly there are many good MRA’s that are hesitant to refer people they know here for exactly the same reasons. I do understand. But it has not stopped us from growing in the least.

We have not failed to acquire benefactors either. AVfM is partly funded by many who make small contributions. All of them are greatly appreciated. But honestly, what keeps us afloat is a small group of men and women who ante up larger donations on a regular basis. I have no reason that to think that will not continue to improve as the site grows.

And I argue that what we are doing is working. The public dialog about all this, at least online, has changed dramatically since websites like AVfM and The Spearhead have come online.

That brings us to the second part of the flaw in your argument. You might as well get used to it Key, ANY message of men’s rights will only be absorbed by a distinct minority of the population. There is not a way to present it to mainstream western culture that will make a large scale impact. That is where I think you have a major flaw in your understanding of the big picture.

With all respect, Keyster, this is the path of your prescription; an intellectual high road that offends no one and leads nowhere.

AVfM is working, and will continue to work well into the future because, IMO, I have studied the course of these things very well and mapped out a strategy built on Harry’s excellent prognostications about the internet and activism.

We have, all of us, officially changed the public discourse online. Feminists across the world wide web are getting contentious, aggravated and afraid, because everywhere they go they see the spotlight of our ideas is shining on every one of their lies. Almost every time a misandrist piece of shit article comes out in a mainstream online rag, our people are there. Not at all just MRA’s, but average men and women, now exposed to the counter-theory and the idea that speaking up is alright. They are finally doing so. There was a time very recently that I could identify most of the people commenting in dissent of feminism on any given mainstream site. Now they are crawling out of the woodwork, from all walks of life, calling bullshit with all the abandon of your average MGTOW.

The only thing the truth ever needed was a voice and an audience.

We are seeing more and more antifeminist slant emerge in the mainstream. You can even look at what is happening now over at GMP, where Hugo Schwyzer and Amanda Marcotte have jumped ship. The real intentions are still a matter for the jury, but Tom Matlack is without question challenging feminist hegemony in his own front yard.

Getting pounded with the truth 10,000 times over, in a not so friendly way, will do that to a man.

And eventually this will change the pulse of the entire public at large; enough, say, that even a politician could put his finger on it and feel a change in rhythm.

And that is what we do.  We are a machine that cranks out the truth and regularly bitch slaps people with it. We do it just hard enough to make them wince before they open their mouths again. And when the ringing in their ears quits, the first thing they want to talk about is us. It is happening all the time now.

But the important part of that purpose is to validate the experiences of our readers, who are the ones that have lived this shit enough that they don’t care about offending people in order to get the message out.

It is those men and women, the ones who don’t need to be told that there is a problem, that we need to keep in mind when we publish; not the hapless masses who don’t realize they are bleeding till the blood starts dripping on their Cheese Covered Wacky Fries™. For those that don’t like the friction involved, I hope they can take solace in the success.

{addendum 1/11/14. I am updating this post in order to declare it conclusive. We have accomplished everything I predicted in the article and much more. AVFM is now by far the largest, most influential website of its kind on the internet. Our work has increasingly spilled into more “real world” environments, attracted  national media attention and effectively changed the dialog across the board on sexual politics. Our work is not near done, but even feminist ideologues are no longer able to deny the issues explored on this site; issues that are becoming a part of the cultural consciousness.  Our trend of growth and expansion is clear and convincing, and we have attracted an incredible array of supportive talent and expertise from a highly diverse group of writers, technology professionals and activists in this field. PE]

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