I hate to break it to you, but feminists suck at using the Internet. Before I go into the reasons, let me explain who I am.
I'm a man who's been in the business of viral Internet curation for a long time. From videos, to slideshows, to articles, I've penned more garbage that gets over a million hits than I am happy to live with. When I post a slideshow of "The World's Funniest Autocorrects" and a million people read it, I die a little inside. There's so much thought provoking content on the web yet the stupidest material is what gets the most views.
But above the "Autocorrects", above the "When You See It"s, above the "Tattoo Fails"s, there's one type of article I know will hit every single time: something that criticizes or makes fun of women.
It all boils down to the secret of the Internet: sharing. We in the viral curation business want you to share the stories you read with your friends, because that's what gets us hits. We do not care why you share. You may share because you hate it. But if you share, we win. And feminists share sexist garbage like no other.
Feminists always feel the need to fight misogyny. To fight the trolls. To voice their disagreement. Sorry feminists, but when you do that all you do is empower the people you are trying to destroy. You bring eyeballs to an article that says the opposite of what you think, and what I think too. People will not remember your blurb on Facebook saying why you hate this article, they will remember the article itself. You cannot change someone's mind in a comment war. All you can do is deliver an awful message to bad people. No matter your intentions, more people read misogynistic trash because you are sharing it.
Here's the real kicker: men do not share sexist content the way women do. One article I distributed was all about the "flawed logic" women have. It was full of generalizations. It was mostly untrue. It was much more offensive than it was funny. But 77% of the people who shared it were women. The comments were nasty. Feminists and trolls went back and forth for hours, and my company reaped the benefits. When feminists give us that many eyeballs, we are definitely going to post that again. Feminists, and no one else, empowered it.
There are other tricks to making content go viral, and I'll use this article as an example. The headline to this piece is very inflammatory. "Feminists Need to Shut Up." Are you kidding me? Feminists are fighting for a cause that amounts to equality for all. The LAST thing feminists need to do is shut up. What they need to do is hold in their opinions from time to time. But guess what? That doesn't make for a viral headline, over-the-top sensationalism does.
Gawker, Slate, Upworthy, and many other sites figured this out. Outrage the people so they will read. Pull at the heartstrings so they will read. Inspire the people so they will read. It's all a bait and switch. I bet some people will share this article without even reading it because it's disguised as another piece of misogynistic doo doo. That's exactly what we want.
There are other tricks I implemented to get views. I admitted that I was a man without revealing my identity. Someone will mention that. I generalized an entire group of people in the first sentence. I guarantee that got one person to angrily share without reading. The picture I posted has a sexist tagline. Cue the comment war.
There is plenty of good feminist writing out there. Jezebel is wonderful. Share that. Don't share the Slate article that blames women for getting raped. If feminists ignore that Slate article, Slate will not post it again. End of story.
So to the feminists, I have a challenge for you. Next time you see an article that hates on women, don't share it. Don't comment on it. Don't voice your outrage. Roll your eyes and move on. Because if enough of you do, those types of articles will cease to exist. We in this business have no sexist agenda. We just want an engaged audience. When you hate, we win. So stop hating and we'll stop writing.
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