Tucker Max and Geoffrey Miller have created a new blog: The Mating Grounds, which purports to teach men the truth about sex and dating. Here is the official story of how Mating Grounds was ideated:
At dinner, Geoff told Tucker’s how he’d heard of his books, and explained that he had to spend hours explaining to his nephews that they were not advice books.
Tucker “Well of course not, my books are just funny stories about the really stupid, ridiculous things I’ve done. Why do they think they’re advice???”
Geoff “Well, they’re all 14-20, and your writing is the only frank and honest thing they’ve ever read on sex and dating. There is nothing else that talks about these issues the way you do. In the absence of that, they use what they have, and they take your books as advice.”
Tucker “That’s fucking stupid, it’s not designed as advice! There must be something that explains sex and dating in a clear, informational way.”
Geoff “I have looked, quite extensively, for a book or something that honestly and frankly addresses the entire spectrum of sex, dating, women and relationships, especially for men. I have never found one. I have to spend hours answering their very basic questions about these issues.”
Tucker “No fucking way. This has to exist.”
Geoff “It doesn’t. I’ve looked.”
Geoff could not have looked very hard, certainly not as far as his own Twitter stream, if he managed to miss the Red Pill blogosphere. Max and Miller are a pair of smart guys, whatever else you might think of them. I’m skeptical that they failed to stumble across the Manosphere in their market research.
They also chose to call attention to their omission: “It doesn’t. I’ve looked.”
People got offended. Danger and Play, Sploosh, Dr. Illusion, Free Northerner, and others, got riled up and implored their readers to share their rage. Who the hell are Tucker Max and Geoff Miller to say that this community doesn’t exist? Who are these fucking guys, claiming with a straight face that there is no existing useful source of information on sex and dating for young men?
The Manosphere got angry. We got so angry, we just couldn’t resist hate-clicking, and hate-reading, and hate-sharing…
Perhaps you’ve caught on by now. If not, let me spell it out:
Put yourself in the shoes of Max and Miller, working on this new project.
You have a very specific target market: young and intelligent English-speaking men, who are interested in improving their relationships with women. You desperately want access to these men.
You note that the “Manosphere” or “The Red Pill” or whatever the hell they call themselves, contains hundreds of thousands of men who match your profile perfectly. Perhaps you are emboldened by this fledgling community’s generally low standard of design, internet marketing savvy, and centralization. The only question is: How do you gain access to their audience?
Well, you could buy an ad on Return Of Kings. You could email the prominent Red Pill bloggers, hat in hand, and request the addition of The Mating Grounds to their blogrolls. (While thinking: They still have blog rolls? What is this, 2008?)
If only there were a faster, easier way, to immediately get on the radar of the entire Red Pill community.
Remember, Tucker Max is good friends with the very smart guy who literally wrote the book on hacking the 21st century news cycle.
And here’s the best part. By “exposing” the gambit, all I’ve done is made it an even more compelling story. You feel intrigued right now. You want to share and discuss this post. Maybe you’re impressed by Max/Miller/Holiday, or maybe you just want to do some more hate-linking. Either way, it serves their goals.
The Future of the Manosphere
Two things could happen now. Either The Mating Grounds will suck, or it won’t.
If The Mating Grounds tries to water itself down, it will suck. If Max and Miller try to build a useful, but still politically correct website, it will become The Good Mangina Project, redux. It will have some modest initial success, which it will owe to the big names attached to it, and then it will fade into obscurity.
Or – and here’s what I hope and predict – The Mating Grounds could be awesome. Max and Miller could realize that there is no bargaining with political correctness, that they will never earn the approval of the milquetoast deniers of human nature, and that their path forward is to embrace truth unconditionally. If they do this, I predict that they will bring some core Red Pill truths into the mainstream consciousness, and help millions of men.
But where does that leave the Manosphere market incumbents? Well, if your blog can’t survive in a market that now includes The Mating Grounds, maybe your blog doesn’t deserve to survive. Does that bother you?
Dear Red Pill blogger, if you write to educate and inspire the young men of our generation to greater heights, you should be relieved that others are taking up your burden. If your blog is a conduit for self-expression, or a tool for tracking and organizing your own thoughts, The Mating Grounds will not interfere with either of those goals.
However, if you write – as I suspect many do – out of a prideful desire to be regarded as an authority figure, out of a hunger for the anonymous status boost of being regarded as a “guru” by other men, then The Mating Grounds is an existential threat to your blog traffic, and the ego you derive from it. Which is fine by me.
Personally, I’m not worried in the slightest. I participate in the Red Pill community because I would occasionally feel extremely lonely without it. There are only so many twenty-something biohacking entrepreneur pick-up artist reactionaries out their in the world, and writing this blog is the only means I have of reaching out to them.
I’m also not worried about the fate of my favourite blogs. The best Manosphere authorities will continue to dominate their niches. Tucker Max’s testosterone ebook is a good basic introduction, but it’s nothing compared to the in-depth knowledge of Danger and Play and Pill Scout. As well, there will always be room in my RSS reader for men like Maverick Traveler, 30 Days To X, Laid NYC, and Kid Strangelove, who write honestly about their experiences walking the same path that I’m on.
Ultimately, there is no point in getting upset over the claim that The Mating Grounds owes nothing to the Red Pill Blogosphere. If Tucker Max and Geoffrey Miller really are doing something original, something that truly does not yet exist, then I wish them all the best. If they are merely planning a PC repackaging of basic Red Pill truths, they will fade into obscurity soon enough, with or without my condemnation.