The Men’s Rights Subreddit: A net exporter of hate

A new shipment of angry MRAs is on its way!

A new shipment of angry MRAs is on its way!

Oh, Reddit, not again. So about a week ago, a woman posted what seemed to be a heartfelt and sorrowful confession to r/confession with the self-explanatory title “I cheated on my sweetheart of a husband for 3 years with my violent, abusive ex. This is the one secret I am taking to my grave.”

Now,  r/confession purports to be a subreddit devoted to helping out those who confess their wrongdoings, and the sidebar warns potential commenters not to be abusive: “No personal attacks, we are not here to make people feel bad.”

But Reddit being Reddit – that is, a hotbed of resentful “nice guys” always looking for an excuse to vilify women in general or a woman in particular – many of the commenters attacked the OP as an evil “scumbag,” or worse. While the worst comments were deleted by the mods, many attacks on the OP remain, some with literally hundreds of upvotes. Those who expressed any degree of empathy for the OP found their comments roundly downvoted.

After a few days, the discussion died down.

But then, after several days of silence, a new wave of abusive comments started to appear.  Like this one:


And this:


Oh, but there’s more:


I’ve saved the worst for last. (I’ve also included the response from the confessor herself.) TRIGGER WARNING for violence.





So how did a dead thread like this come to life again, and so unpleasantly? Well, you guessed it: it got linked to in r/mensrights and later in r/redpill, a smaller and even more extreme “men’s rights” subreddit.  And indeed, if you look at the comment histories of the people I’ve just quoted, you’ll see that most of them also posted in either r/mensrights or r/redpill around the time they made these comments.

It’s a fair guess that many of the upvotes that these terrible comments got also came from visiting r/menrights-ers.

Back in r/mensrights, one commenter, disgusted by all this, chronicled some of the bad behavior of his MRA comrades:


A lot more people besides IBM2431 are going to have to stand up and speak out if they want to clean up r/mensrights’ well-deserved reputation as a net exporter of hate.

Not that r/confession is absolved of blame here. While commenters there piled on this woman, who seemed sincerely sorry for what she said she had done, the r/confession regulars found nothing wrong with the behavior of another commenter — a dude, of course — who confessed he’d “fapped” a number of times to cam footage he found of a friend of his sister’s masturbating — which was evidently recorded and put online without her knowledge or consent.

NOTE: By the time this post goes up, it’s possible and even likely that the mods of r/confession will have deleted the worst of the comments from the r/mensrights and r/redpill invaders. But they should still be visible in the comment histories of those who posted them.

About David Futrelle

I run the blog We Hunted the Mammoth, which tracks (and mocks) online misogyny. My writing has appeared in a wide variety of places, including Salon,, the Washington Post, the New York Times Book Review and Money magazine. I like cats.

Posted on January 28, 2013, in are these guys 12 years old?, douchebaggery, hate, hundreds of upvotes, men who should not ever be with women ever, misogyny, MRA, reddit, taking pleasure in women's pain, trigger warning and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 453 Comments.

  1. I feel like all the trolls on this thread have gone like this:

    Us: Trolling people on the Internet is a douchey thing to do and doesn’t improve anything.


    Us: Yes, but we’re not talking about the thing she did, that’s not what we’re here for. We’re here to say the trolling is not okay.


    Us: “Misogyny. We mock it.” Comprendo?


    Us: We’re not talking about her goddamn behavior OMFG.


  2. @LBT you got the caps lock behaviour correct, but I feel that the grammar should be worse, if you’re going for accuracy. There’s also a logic flow through the troll comments that overstates it’s probability in reality.🙂

  3. I was bitten by a rabid English teacher as a small child. I can not consciously change my grammar in the way required.

  4. I actually tried to write like Steele a few times. Couldn’t do it.

  5. Argenti Aertheri

    Maybe I can help?

    Us: Trolling people on the Internet is a douchey thing to do and doesn’t improve anything.


    Us: Yes, but we’re not talking about the thing she did, that’s not what we’re here for. We’re here to say the trolling is not okay.


    Us: “Misogyny. We mock it.” Comprendo?


    Us: yes, what she did was wrong, but that doesn’t justify misogynistic replies.


  6. Re GGG: I was wondering if there are many guys like him in countries where they have arranged marriages. Like, they grew up expecting their parents to find a wife for them, and now they’re dissapointed rather than liberated by having to do it themselves.

  7. There’s the rub, none of us type fluent Troll. 😦

    I’m raising a glass and saying bravo to you too for trying, they were valiant attempts, but, in the final analysis, the depths to which you had to sink were just too low.

    Pip pip.

  8. That why I initially thought he was from a different region. Croatia I was not expecting.

    Even if he was from a culture that does arranged marriages isn’t he a bit young, though? Given that he seems to be dating his “incel” years from the onset of puberty.

  9. FWIW, Abnoy was posting from the Philippines.

  10. Argenti Aertheri

    Thanks for clearly that up David!

    Re: GGG —

    “Given that he seems to be dating his “incel” years from the onset of puberty.”

    Ok that’s just weird, even from a purely mathematical view. Puberty starts, on average, at 10~13. In the US, average age of loss of virginity is 17. Ignoring the issues with the concept of virginity and regional differences, that’s, at minimum, four years where most of his peers weren’t having sex either.

    Croatia average age for loss of virginity? No such luck finding that, but the percentage of sexually experienced 15 year old boys is 21.9% versus 24.1% for Canada. Of Canada’s 15-19 year olds, 43% report having had sex at least once.

    In short, unless he hit puberty way late or something, there’s no reason, whatsoever, for him to have found it weird that he wasn’t getting any right after puberty. Except, you know, the media sells it like everyone is doing it already!

    All numbers are wiki citations if anyone wants citations.

  11. My friend swears it’s “octopodus” but hell if I know.

    Not to be confused with OCTOPOTUS, the 14th through 22nd President of the United States.

    Octopotus f’taghn!

  12. Some Gal Not Bored at All

    So, since all the trolls seemed so intent on portraying infidelity as the worst thing ever, I checked around and good stats on it seem really hard to find. Going by the lower estimates (which seem to align more with me not personally knowing anyone who had an affair except my father, which was hardly typical), 10-20% of people cheat on a spouse and, of the percentage of those that are revealed/discovered, roughly 30% will stay together. So, it isn’t quite as unforgiveable as the trolls pretend (although it is worth pointing out that some people can’t afford to leave a spouse and that sucks).

    Since MRAs also get so upset about possibly raising other men’s children, it might be worth knowing that only 3% of children are the product of infidelity. Since some of those will be kids of cheating men and some will be children that were admitted to not be the husband’s, that probably means that less than 2% of kids are being passed off as someone else’s. (And actually, as people seem to be less likely to cheat on a spouse than a boyfriend/girlfriend and not all kids are born to married parents, if you are married to the child’s mother it probably means that the kid is even less likely than that to be some other guy’s.) Wow are MRAs screwed over by shit that hardly ever happens!

    The stats are here:
    I won’t vouch for the site except to say that they give a citation and the numbers are consistent with some on Wikipedia and on mainstream news sites.

  13. although it is worth pointing out that some people can’t afford to leave a spouse and that sucks

    Yep. There’s also cultural pressure not to leave your spouse, particularly among religious conservatives and “old-fashioned” types: Marriage is a sacred vow and you can’t break it. Boys will be boys. He wouldn’t have cheated if you’d met his sexual needs! Being cuckolded is humiliating. She wouldn’t have cheated if you had more manly sexual prowess! Etc…

    I assume those stats are from the USA? The figures I hear most often come from a UK study, which found that 30% of couples will experience cheating, and that men and women cheat at equal rates. I’ll be damned if I can find the study now, of course…

  14. @Kiwi Girl

    Octopussy was the title of a really weird James Bond short story. I got the impression that the villain was in romantic love with his pet octopus and when Bond pushed him into the water and he was drowned by her he was really really happy…

    It’s been a while since I read it.

  15. Maybe TMI, but I know a married couple where cheating was a problem. I don’t know what lead to their decision to stay together, but they were both in school and had a house and two kids together and as far as I know a divorce would have fucked them all over, royally. I don’t think it’s fair to say “just get a divorce if you want to cheat”. It’s not always a simple situation.

  16. Some Gal Not Bored at All


    I would assume they are from the USA as well, but really no place was clear a out it. (There were lots of sites citing that closer to 70% of marriages will experiences infidelity and lots if sites discussing why that was wrong, but no sites being really explicit about where they were talking about.) I

    Is the 30% referring to all couples or just married ones? I found really different stats for non-married couples – around half. (Which still seems high, but I do at least personally know someone who cheated on a boyfriend so it seems like it could be true.)

  17. Some Gal Not Bored at All


    I agree and it is why I looked for the actual stats. Cheating is more complicated in general than the trolls are portraying it as.

    I mentioned my father above and he is someone who I’m not sure I blame too harshly for cheating. He was gay and closeted, had an affair, and eventually came out and left my mom. I blame him for exposing my mom to possible STDs (he contracted AIDS and this was during the mid-80s so that was really terrifying for my mom), but the finding someone else – the emotional infidelity – is really hard to blame him for. It might also be that I never really got to know him so I’m more ready to forgive.

  18. I don’t think it’s fair to say “just get a divorce if you want to cheat”. It’s not always a simple situation.

    I wouldn’t advocate that, I’d say “if you have problems with your relationship that might cause it to end, speak to your partner(s) and see what solutions, if any, you can come up with”. I mean there’s a million reasons why people cheat, and a million solutions to each reason. People don’t seem to advocate talking as much as they should do. From MRAs who think their partners just plain shouldn’t have an opinion, to Cosmo readers who think if they just waggle their eyebrow in a specific way then all their relationship woes could be solved, to just the general cultural idea that you can use passive-aggression to force your partner to do something they’re not gender-coded to like (or actually just plain don’t like)… I find it all really sad. I mean, just use your fucking words. Relationships are not supposed to be adversarial. You are actually supposed to like the person you’re in one with.

  19. I know, lessee… half a dozen cases of just plain cheating. I know a few more of relationships that couldn’t take the strain of change, and so led to dissolutions misogynists might paint as, “unfaithful woman”, because they had very short times from break up to new romance; sometimes with friends they had sought out for comfort.

    The ugliest cheating I know of tends to be in poly-situations. Mostly because one party seems to think that their partner will veto the outside interest, and so they refuse to talk about it, and then all sorts of drama happens.

    Those tend to be very large, and pretty permanent rifts. My personal experience has been that (mostly) talking about it may lead to a breakup, but those are usually not that durably acrimonious, no matter how much the initial separation leads to anger.

    I know one couple (non-poly) who broke up, got a divorce; he had been unfaithful, and some other stuff. They still got on, and for a couple of years after the divorce were still having a sexual relationship; to their childrens’ amusement.

  20. The ugliest cheating I know of tends to be in poly-situations.

    I’ll second that. I think they up the drama even more if they are going with the whole belief they are too evolved for jealousy, etc. etc.

  21. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

    “too evolved for jealousy”

    ::hak hak BLORRK::

  22. Kitteh’s, yeah, that’s a proper reaction, I think.🙂

    Sadly, it’s a pretty common attitude for Poly. I think it has diminished some over time, but you’ll still encounter it. I think now it tends to be more how they just have so much better tools for dealing with it and communicating, which still tends to boil down to “if you are mad about it, it is your fault for not processing properly”.

    Look, if someone wants to be an asshat, they are going to be an asshat, whether or not they claim a particular relationship style or philosophy.

  23. Argenti Aertheri

    “I’ll second that. I think they up the drama even more if they are going with the whole belief they are too evolved for jealousy, etc. etc.”

    *is totally doing that, skulks off to corner* And he didn’t even cheat, he decided to go monogamous with someone else. Which, frankly, is weirder, we weren’t serious, so sleeping with someone else was “meh, I expect that” but siously dating someone, who isn’t me…yeah…


    On topic, depends on the situtation how it works out /obvious statement

  24. Oh Argenti. Yeah, that’s kind of annoying, but really, what can you do? People structure their relationships in various ways. Maybe he was just looking for serious and that happened to be monogamous with who he found.

    Nonetheless, break ups tend to suck, regardless of the overall circumstances. Just on principle. So sympathy from me.

  25. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help

    ::makes small offering to Ceiling Cat in gratitude for never having gone through any of this shit, be it poly, mono or whatever::

  26. Late to the party but that government girlfriends guy is the absolute worst. I can’t even express my rage.

    And I also don’t think cheating is as big of a deal as people make it out to be because I don’t believe that monogamy is right for everyone, but that we’re pressured as a society into being monogamous when many of us shouldn’t be, setting ourselves up for failure. While I wish it was as simple as being poly or open when it’s how you would flourish with your partner, it just isn’t.

  27. Argenti Aertheri

    I missed the condolences on my pseudo-relationship failure (idfk) but thank you.

    Jessay — his blog is one of the very few that get featured here that scare me (does that sentence make sense?)

  28. He does seem like if he’s not a Poe he’s probably going to kill someone sooner or later. So I’m hoping he’s a Poe.

  29. The only thing that gets me through that blog is the hope that he’s a really dedicated and elaborate troll because if he isn’t I worry for the people around him. He treats “his story” like a punishment for girls who don’t give him a boner and/or get a lady boner from him. This is what you get for not giving me the sex I NEED you stupid woman!

  30. Men use any excuse for their double standards. Don’t you wish they stuck up for women they way they do their bad behavior ? Their bad behavior gets excuses women’s bad behavior gets death.

  31. Why do men think that they can have sex out of a contract agreement and think that it’s not the end of a contract?
    What would happens if they made a territorial contract and business and the partner went outside the contract? Would he want to do business with that partner anymore? There is no fixing, there is no allowing, there is no tolerance for breaking contracts. Either make them and keep them, or get out.

  32. thetalkingmushroom

    hmm…lets see… oh yeah, your looking at the trolls of r/mensrights, there are plenty like this in srs subreddits you fucking idiot.

  33. thetalkingmushroom

    look, this is only looking at the worst of /mensrights, there are plenty of members from feminist subreddits that are just as bad as the members featured in this article.

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