I decided to take a little break from the manosphere for the day and plunge instead into another maelstrom of delusion, disinformation and hate: Facebook. Or at least the Very Mad side of Facebook, as helpfully curated by the contributors to the InsanePeopleOnFacebook subreddit.
By David Futrelle
Reductress, if you don’t already know, is kind of a feminist Onion, poking gentle fun at women’s magazines, clickbaity “inspirational” web sites aimed at women, and the feminism-ultra-lite that permeates women’s media generally. Gleefully absurdist, its headlines (and the news stories that accompany them) are easily spotted as the parodies they are.
By David Futrelle
The fellas at internet garbage site Return of Kings are celebrating Pride Month, a little tardily, with a post attacking Facebook for adding a “degenerate” rainbow flag to its menu of “like” buttons, which users can access by liking the official LGBTQ@Facebook page. Or, as the author of the RoK piece, one Rufus Winnfield, puts it, the “button is only active if you show active approval for homosexuals on the site.”
Every Friday is Memeday here at We Hunted the Mammoth, and today we’ll be looking at some memes I found on a Facebook page called Feminist Hypocrisy.
At first glance, this page looks like any number of other Men’s Rightsy Facebook pages.
So Facebook has been making some tweaks to some of its graphics. The company recently changed its already unexciting logo to one that is … even less exciting, but apparently easier to read on mobile devices.
But it’s what Facebook has done to its “friends” icon that has one lady MRA up in arms.
The We Hunted the Mammoth Pledge Drive continues! If you haven’t already, please consider sending some bucks my way. (The PayPal page will say you are donating to Man Boobz.) Thanks!
So I’ve discovered a new bunch of antifeminist meme-makers who’ve somehow managed to pull off something close to the spectacular ugliness, incoherence, and just plain wrongness achieved by the meme masters at A Voice for Men.
Let’s give a big round of applause to the graphics whizzes of the United Anti-Feminist Coalition and their lovely Facebook page.
The Godwin-tastic meme at the top of this page — which gets bonus Godwin Points because Gloria Allred is actually Jewish — may be my favorite of theirs I’ve seen so far, but there are so many other brilliant contributions on their page that I hardly know where to start.
The unquestioned king of A Voice for Men’s crew of meme-makers is the mysterious fellow known only as John Galt. Galt, whose contributions are often chosen as AVFM’s “meme of the week” and posted to AVFM’s Facebook page, is truly the meme-maker AVFM deserves — a graphic designer whose graphically challenged photoshopped masterpieces are as baffling as they are offensive.
I highlighted several of his, er, designs in my recent post on Inexplicable AVFM Memes. Today, I’d like to delve further into the photoshop disasters that fill his own Facebook page, some of them official AVFM memes and others posted under his own fake name.
But first, a little introduction to Mr. Galt, as found on his blog.
Men’s Rightsers and Pickup Artists alike are obsessed with the dilemma of the so-called “Nice Guy” who can’t get laid. MRAs see his plight as a symptom of a gynocratic society in which fickle, asshole-loving women are the gatekeepers of sex; PUAs see it as a sign that beta males need to learn how to imitate the vaguely aloof swagger of the natural alpha male.
And both MRAs and PUAs completely miss the point.
To see just how badly they do, let’s take a look at a recent post from the sadly influential PUA shitbag Heartiste, who uses an alleged Facebook screencap of uncertain provenance as a springboard for a diatribe against the “desperate male,” that is, the “desperate, clingy ünterbeta male” who pursues a woman, often in a weirdly apologetic, even abject way, long after she’s made it clear she has no interest in him.
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):
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.