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Category Archives: threats

When anonymous threats are not-so anonymous

kindofadick

When feminists are besieged with threatening messages after being targeted by Men’s Rights Activists, MRAs sometimes ask how we know for sure that the messages (or at least a good portion of them) are being sent by MRAs. And the answer is that, in most cases, we don’t, at least not beyond a reasonable doubt, because most people sending threatening messages have the good sense to do so anonymously.

So it is possible, at least theoretically, that when, say, a feminist blogger gets threatening messages shortly after MRAs start posting nasty things about her on their blogs and in their various forums, it is not MRAs sending the messages but angry ornithologists who, for no reason whatsoever, collectively decided to pick on a feminist blogger that day. Seems unlikely, but it’s possible.

Other times, though, we do know who is sending the threats, because, conveniently enough, they do so under their own name or using their MRA identity online.

That was the case, you might recall, when Australian MRA and fanatical A Voice for Men supporter Frank James Spencer, also known as KARMA MRA MGTOW, left me a creepy, vaguely threatening voicemail message one night at 1:38 AM. That was the case with many of those posting threatening YouTube comments about a certain inadvertently famous Canadian feminist.

And that was the case last night when a longtime MRA known as Masculist Man tried to post a threatening message in the comments to a post of mine about a threatening comment directed at me on The Spearhead. The Spearhead comment, you may remember, involved a weird and elaborate anal rape fantasy. I noted in my post that the comment had gotten 10 upvotes, no downvotes.

Masculist Man added his two cents (click for larger version):

Submitted on 2014/05/16 at 9:07 pm  Actually 17 upvotes,including mine. I could ask the entire manosphere to vote on this. We should have that up to 500 upvotes by morning.  Eat shit asshole

He’s probably right about the 500 upvotes. Apparently rape threats are a form of Human Rights activism.

I wrote about a ranty blog  post of Mr. Man’s some time ago, and he’s written several posts about me, or at least about someone he calls Dave Fooltrelle. I let him comment here for a time as well. He was always obnoxious, though never quite this obnoxious.

Mr. Man’s blog is called, creatively, Men’s Rights Blog. In addition to the aforementioned ranty post, it features a cartoony avatar of himself wearing a fedora and brandishing a sword, with the caption “I’ll cut ya.” As part of his “activism,” he’s put up a page of anti-feminist “memes,” many based on photos of real feminists, including me. The blog has been around since 2007.

In his profile on Blogger, he declares

I’ve been a masculist for over 20 years and have been very activist,both on and offline. I’ve debated phonies and feminists and have prevailed over both.

He lists Warren Farrell’s The Myth of Male Power as one of his favorite books, and Neil LaBute’s misogynistic fantasy In The Company of Men as one of his favorite films.

And if you follow the link to Mr. Man’s Facebook page, you can take a look at his small collection of Facebook friends, including AVFM’s Paul Elam and MRA lawyer Roy Den Hollander, as well as the groups he supports, including the National Coalition for Men, the Men’s Human Rights Movement Facebook group, and assorted anti-VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) groups.

So, yeah, I think it’s safe to say that this threatening comment came from an MRA.

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W.F. Price of The Spearhead accuses me of supporting violence against women … by opposing violence against women

W.F. Price (not pictured) believes the best way to prevent domestic violence is to put men in charge of households, and to keep police out

W.F. Price (not pictured) believes the best way to prevent domestic violence is to put men in charge of households, and to keep police out

W. F. Price of The Spearhead isn’t very happy about my recent suggestion that the Men’s Rights movement encourages abusive ways of thinking towards women. It’s a strange claim for him to make, coming as it is from a guy who presides over one of the most notorious outposts of vicious, virulent misogyny in the Men’s Rights universe. Even stranger is his claim that by opposing violence against women and children I am therefore … supporting policies that lead to more violence against women and children.

It’s going to take a little while to work our way through his convoluted argument. So let’s start at the beginning. Here’s the quote of mine he objects to, from my post the other day about Lundy Bancroft:

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How Melody Hensley is putting the bullies to shame

bully

 

Yesterday, a message arrived in my email inbox with the title “Are you happy to die a virgin,” a somewhat unusual question, I felt, not just because of its faulty premise but also because of its lack of the conventional question mark at the end. The email itself was equally blunt and illiterate:

You sound like a 40 y/o FAT VIRGIN living in a basement rotting away. Is manboobz.com your way of hide behind your own internal issues u refuse to face? Father issues???

Ah, here’s where the missing question mark went, along with some friends.

The sender appended a photo of an extremely obese Asian man at least 20 years my junior, mostly if not completely nude, along with the question (and I quote verbatim) “This this photo you??”

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After a feminist activist at Queen’s University reports being attacked, possibly by an MRA, the king of “fuck their shit up” responds with angry denial

Paul Elam: Anger is "pulsing through my veins like molten lava" at the very notion that MRAs are violent.

Paul Elam: Anger is “pulsing through my veins like molten lava.”

A student at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, says she was attacked and beaten by a strange man after receiving threatening messages about her opposition to a Men’s Rights group on campus. On Thursday, Danielle d’Entremont posted a picture of her bruised face to Facebook along with this explanation:

Just walked out of my house and got attacked by a stranger. I was punched in the face multiple times and lost half my tooth. This was after a few threatening emails regarding my support for feminist activities on campus. I can’t say for sure if the two are connected, however the attacker was a male who knew my name.

The campus Men’s Issues Awareness Society (MIAS) – the group d’Entremont has been fighting – has condemned the attack, as has the Canadian Association for Equality (CAFE), which co-sponsored a talk the MIAS put on Thursday. The police are investigating.

Right now, this is pretty much all we know about the story. Not that it this has stopped MRAs from offering their very fervent opinions on the matter.

Before we get to them, here are a few of my own:

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Some of the comments I don’t let through

How comments are moderated at Man Boobz.

How comments are moderated at Man Boobz.

So I had to re-ban a couple of long-banned trolls today, who had returned with new names and slightly different IP addresses but who gave themselves away with their behavior. And that got me thinking about the people — well, the MRAs and PUAs and other such charming folks — who regularly denounce me as an evil censor of FREE SPEECH.

In fact, when I ban people, I do so for good reasons: one of the two trolls I banned today was a longtime MRAish commenter here who eventually creeped everyone out by boasting about having sex with underage prostitutes; the other was a man of many sockpuppets known for angry, abusive meltdowns full of slurs.

Anyway, so I thought I’d give you all a glimpse into my “trash” folder. Here’s a sampling of comments from would-be first time commenters at Man Boobz that I felt would not add anything to the discourse here. But in the interests of FREE SPEECH I thought I’d give these “ideas” an airing today.

TRIGGER WARNING for violent and offensive language. (Sorry about the quality of the last two; you can click on them to see larger versions.)

You people are such wankers. MGTOW is the best thing that ever happened. Personally, i despise women and would gladly see them all die horribly. This site is not only run bu a pathetic, wretched little scum, but populated by ones as well.Sad to say. But I see many good men get hurt by women. I feel not one drop of sympathy for any women who gets hurt, Beatin up or treated like shit. Cheers you dumb bitch.censored1censored2

Not all of the comments I trash are quite this awful. Some are only mildly violent or abusive. I tend to be a bit picky with people’s first comments, assuming that if someone posts a shitty first comment it’s not likely to get any better after that. There are a few banned commenters who stop by and try to post anyway, including one fellow who leaves endless comments trying to prove, as far as I can tell, that teenage girls are objectively hotter than women in their twenties and older.

And, of course, there are comments targeting individual women, whether these are giant cut-and-pasted rants about Anita Sarkeesian, vaguely threatening remarks aimed at other well-known internet feminists, or bizarre sexual comments about female MRAs from fans of theirs.

Once in a while I will get a comment from a feminist that resorts to violent language; I don’t let those comments through either.

And then there are the pictures people try to post in the comments. Below, one of the ones I actually let through, depicting me in a dress with some extremely tall dude. A quick Google image search reveals that it was originally posted online by regular A Voice for Men contributor Janet Bloomfield, in a blog post of hers from last year on Disney princesses. Stay classy, Men’s “Human Rights” Movement!

I don't actually own a dress like this.

I don’t actually own a dress like this.

Anyway, the pictures I don’t let through are worse.

A Voice for Men’s Honey Badgers ask: Why hasn’t Anita Sarkeesian been harassed MORE?

A Voice for Men’s so-called “Honey Badgers” — its little super-team of female MRAs, led by blabby Canadian videoblogger Karen “GirlWritesWhat” Straughan — have a new theory about Anita Sarkeesian. And it’s a doozy.

Sarkeesian, you may recall, is a feminist cultural critic who’s faced pretty much nonstop harassment from misogynistic internet assholes since she launched a project to dissect sexist tropes in video games. AVFM has contributed, in its own special way, to this wave of harassment, with articles describing Sarkeesian as, among other things, a “moneygrubbing liar” and a “queen bee … girl interloper” in the world of video games; AVFM’s Dean Esmay also held her partially responsible, along with an assortment of other internet feminists, for the suicide of one Canadian Men’s Rights Activist.

The principals at AVFM have blamed her for — either inadvertently or deliberately – bringing this harassment on herself by going to 4chan and posting about her project. (As I noted in a previous post, there’s no actual evidence she ever did this.)

The Honey Badgers, for their part, are certain that getting harassed by 4chaners was  part of her devious plan all along.

In a teaser for their internet “radio” show tonight, the “Honey Badger” known as TyphonBlue writes:

Like all professional damsels in distress, Anita Sarkeesian had to choose a good dragon. Just the right looming shadow to fall over her delicate and fragile sensibilities; just the right cackling stage-villain to inspire her cries of helpless horror.

She chose 4-chan. An internet forum known for it’s underbelly of foul-tempered and hair-triggered trolls.

Then, after accusing Sarkeesian of inviting countless rape and death threats upon herself (and only a portion of it from 4channers, I should add), the Badgers take their weird conspiracy theory one step further:

But we at Honey Badger Radio have noticed something… odd. The wave of so-called hate that Anita received from her carefully chosen dragon, wasn’t really all that bad.

Yeah. A year and a half (so far) of pretty much unending harassment and baseless criticism, complete with violent threats directed not only at her but at other women who have defended her — that’s nothing.

Compared to 4-chan’s usual scorched earth strategy–raizing [sic] everything to the ground and pissing on the ashes, Anita got a little singed, like she sat too close to a campfire.

So we have to ask… Did 4-chan white knight Anita? I mean, come on. Was that the best 4 chan could do?

Yes, that’s right. The Honey Badgers are accusing those who sent rape and death threats to Anita Sarkeesian … of “white knighting” her.

I can’t even.

Men’s Rights Jeopardy: I’ll take “Kill the B*tch” for two dozen upvotes, Alex.

MRAs: Perpetually furious

MRAs: Perpetually furious

So over on the Men’s Rights subreddit, a fella named dzogen came by to vent about his unfair divorce.

Seems his “freeloader and loser” of an ex-wife — a former drug addict — sits around the house eating bon bons while happily collecting $2500 a month in child support for the five year old kid they had together. Also, she treats him with disrespect. “Meanwhile,” the poor fella wrote, for an added dose of pathos, “I have to survive on PB&J.”

*cough*shitthatneverhappened*cough*

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Facebook: Page advocating murder of feminist blogger “doesn’t violate our community standard on bullying and harassment.”

facebookwthumbflipped

Several months ago, you may recall, feminist activists got Facebook to agree to remove blatant sexist hate speech from its site — much to the chagrin of many Men’s Rights Activists, like Paul Elam of A Voice for Men, who declared, in a post filled with alarmist rhetoric, that “feminist ideologues are co-opting Facebook, and they will root out any and all opposition to their worldview.” AVFM’s John Hembling, meanwhile, denounced the feminist activists as “fascists.”

Ever since then, Men’s Rights activists have been playing a game of “gotcha” with Facebook, trying to prove that the hate-speech monitors there only care about misogynist hate speech, and don’t actually care about hate speech directed at men. Every few days, it seems, there is a new thread in the Men’s Rights subreddit purporting to document this alleged “double standard.”

Ten days ago, for example, a Men’s Rights Redditor called dizzy_j got nearly 400 upvotes for a post complaining that “I reported three anti-men Facebook pages for gender-based hate speech today. Only one was removed.”  Six days ago,  DerDietrich got 580 upvotes for submitting this supposed evidence of a double standard. Trouble is, you can’t actually prove a double standard with a handful of examples.

But I would like to suggest an alternate hypothesis, which also fits the anecdotal data provided thus far by the MRAs, and provide an additional piece of anecdotal evidence that supports my theory and undercuts theirs.

My hypothesis is that Facebook is shitty at recognizing and dealing with hate speech and harassment, no matter whom it’s aimed at.

My evidence for this? Well, yesterday bloggers at Skepchick noticed a Facebook page targeting a specific feminist/skeptic blogger and asking if she “should … be murdered.” The anonymous poster — who identified her by name and posted pictures of her on the page — coyly avoided a literal call for murder, writing instead:

We should not ever break the law. Rather, we should advocate , through lawful land constitutional processes, to have the law changed so that it is legal to kill [name redacted by DF]. Alternatively, we should, where legal, request that [name redacted by DF] kill herself. Relevant laws should be changed so that suicide, and advocating suicide, is legal.

The Skepchick bloggers reported the page to Facebook for its obvious violations of the site’s harassment policies.

And they received this reply from Facebook (I’ve covered up the blogger’s name):

facebookharassnoteREdact

I think it’s fair to say that if Facebook can’t recognize a page calling for the literal murder of someone as harassment there is something very wrong with its system for dealing with harassment and hate speech.

The page has since been taken down, though it’s not clear if it was removed by Facebook or by the original anonymous Facebooker.

Get your act together, Facebook.

Jane Austen and the Rape-Threatening Men

The face that launched a thousand threatening tweets.

The face that launched a thousand threatening tweets.

NOTE: Today is Day Two of the Man Boobz Pledge Drive. If you haven’t already, please consider clicking the little button below and sending some bucks my way.

Thanks! (And thanks again to all who’ve already donated.) Now back to our regularly scheduled programming:

So what sorts of things make some men so furious that they feel the need to send women they’ve never met literal death and rape threats on the internet? It doesn’t take much, apparently. A woman suggesting that it’s not such a good idea to hit on women in elevators at 4 AM. A woman making  videos suggesting that there’s sexism in video games. A woman captured on video telling some men to shut the fuck up. A woman complaining about sexist jokes at a tech conference.

Add to this: a woman campaigning successfully to have Jane Austen’s face put on the Bank of England’s ten pound notes.

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Drama! Men’s Rights Reddit threatened with shutdown after two of its mods are caught helping doxers

caught

Earlier this week, as you may recall, Men’s Rights Redditors pretended they were shocked – shocked! – that anyone might think that MRAs had anything to do with the doxing and harassment of that red-haired Canadian activist we’ve been discussing. Couldn’t be them! Had to be … trolls!

Then on Wednesday the Men’s Rights Redditors found a blog post by a woman claiming to be a “conservative feminist” with a recently minted doctorate who was working in her alma mater’s admissions office — and, she claimed, rejecting out of hand all the applications that she thought were “dripping with white male privilege.”

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