The Evolution of The Manosphere


Down in the mosh pit, ys asks a question about the Dalrock blog. I hesitate to make another blog the focus of this one, but I think there are a number of important lessons in a general survey of what I’ve seen transpire over the last decade.

Boxer, you seem to have been reading him from nearly the beginning. In your estimation, when did he take off or become popular? Was it a post or two, or was it just a slow build over time?

About fifteen years ago, I was having a difficult time with a girl named Elise. I was fucking Elise, was largely monogamous, and I had convinced myself that Elise was “the one.” My background was sadly typical. I had grown up the child of divorced parents, and had convinced myself not only that a successful marriage was possible, but that I was the one man I knew, in current year, who would find one. At the time of my girlfriend hassles, I was working my way through a very rigorous graduate program, and I just couldn’t believe that I wasn’t able to juggle all the work and books and somehow manage to keep this wimminz happy.

The first self-help book I bought was Robert Glover‘s No More Mr. Nice Guy, which featured an internet self-help forum. It was not long after reading this book that I:

a. broke up with troublemaking girlfriend, and

b. reconnected with my own father.

I don’t know, in hindsight, which was more difficult to do, but I’m incredibly grateful to the advice I got from Glover’s book, which helped me do both.

Around this time I found a number of “game” fora, which seemed like a melange of snake-oil salesmanship coupled with things which I had found obvious since I was a teenager. It would be later that I’d realize I had stumbled into my own knowledge of picking up skanks through a series of happy accidents (combined with a don’t care attitude as a kid, which allowed for experimentation.)

Around 2009 I started becoming interested in Roissy, largely because I outgrew my childish narcissism, and came to sympathize with the brothers who were too shy or autistic to do what I had been doing, namely just putting some crude moves on whatever skank I found attractive at the moment. Such men were deeply unhappy, and their struggles seemed to mirror men I knew in my daily life. After Roissy, I found Welmer’s Spearhead blog, and after this, I found Dalrock.

It was some time after finding the Dalrock blog that I found his work trolling Yahoo! Answers. Back in the day, wimminz would post tone-deaf idiocy on this aggregator, and Dalrock had a knack of dogwhistling them into line.

Screen Shot 2020-01-25 at 13.50.06

The author is probably one of the best rhetoriticians we have on our side, which made his site a draw for me.

When Dalrock Became Popular

The original question ys asked had a temporal dimension which is difficult to parse. Dalrock is objectively unpopular, compared even to bit players in pop culture. I’d estimate his regular readers as maybe 200 people, and there are probably no more than a couple of thousand people, worldwide, who have ever read his work. Even so, it’s an interesting question, and I’ll attempt to answer.

Through 2012 or so, Dalrock regularly poached some of the best contributors to The Spearhead and A Voice for Men, who regged in his comments section. This was sort of a golden age, in which everyone more-or-less got along.

Between 2012 and 2015, Dalrock started trolling various wolves in sheep’s clothing, including my old friend Sheila Gregoire.

Kooky Canadian Feminist

At this point, his comment section began really taking off. It also started becoming something less interesting and more imbued with groupthink. That was about the point when Cane Caldo pronounced his impotent little jihaad against Lyn87, and after this, he started going off on anyone who dared disagree with him. Eventually, Dalrock’s comments were overloaded with bile, largely written by Christians against anyone who didn’t purity-spiral themselves to heaven.

That was, not coincidentally, the point when I started this blog. I had earlier seen the dysfunction on various red pill blogs like iSteve and Roissy, and began to appreciate the linear function which seems to take hold as a blog gets more popular, and its comments get filled up with rabid yes-men and asslickers, who want to ride the coattails of better writers and thinkers. Originally, I thought I’d find a way to abate or rechannel this process, but I don’t know how to. What I’ve done with this blog is to ruthlessly cull new commenters who didn’t seem like a good fit, along with playing devil’s advocate with some of the strongest voices here (Derek, Feministhater, Sharkly…) Even when I agree with the groupthink, I don’t necessarily think it’s healthy to allow a monoculture to develop.

There were other incidents which increased his relative popularity, and these generally coincided with the author squabbling with some new population of malcontents. Dalrock gained a large number of readers in 2014, from trolling the goons over in the Atheism+ (pronounced atheismpoz) movement. You can see ya boy in the comments here…

Adam Lee’s Hysterical Campaign

In any case, I hope the story of my dance with Dalrock clarifies some general truths about blogging and popularity.

Author: Boxer

Sinister All-Male Dancer. Secret King of all Gamma Males. Member of Frankfurt School. Your Fave Contrarian!

4 thoughts on “The Evolution of The Manosphere”

  1. “Who takes up the mantle?”

    No one. Or anyone. Consider:

    “I’d estimate his regular readers as maybe 200 people, and there are probably no more than a couple of thousand people, worldwide, who have ever read his work.”

    This is a very succinct way of saying what I said back in “Irrelevancy of the Manosphere.” Dalrock’s audience is a specially grown audience. It is almost cult-like. When the leader of a cult goes away, the flock scatters here and there. Over at Dalrock’s comment thread, commenters listed their favorite people who comment there: AnonymousReader, Novaseeker, Redpill Latecomer, Okrahead, Scott, Lost Patrol, Opus, Oscar, Feeriker, BillyS, thedeti, GunnerQ, Boxer, Earl. A few of those people read and comment here. Will you miss all the people on this list?

    Other authors already exist who fight against feminism. Dalrock was not unique. This blog, for example, is just one of many. Other new sources will crop up from time to time. But it will never be the same group of people that you found at Dalrock’s blog, and quite frankly, I’m not sad about that. It suffered from groupthink, unlike this place:

    “What I’ve done with this blog is to ruthlessly cull new commenters who didn’t seem like a good fit”

    The manosphere is not changing the world, but those 200 people whose lives were changed by Dalrock’s influence don’t care about that. It’s still meaningful to those individuals affected. Rather than replace Dalrock, the rest of us will have to try to change lives as best we can in the way that we are able.

  2. I was always more connected with the MGTOW scene…..going back to the late 1990’s with the “martian space-age bachelor page” which was ruthlessly blocked by the internal firewalls of IBM, GE, Ford Moror, Apple, Intel, Yahoo (I knew people who worked at all these companies in the late 1990’s… could not get the webpage from any internal company system……we would all joke that these companies found this webpage as a threat to the order……there was nothing pornographic. He allowed zero foul language in his comments…… was MGTOW before the acronym ever was thought of. Yeah, it was proto-MGTOW…..and it had ZERO dating advice).

    Another early one was deepwaterweb which had a dire hatred of then President Clinton (this was 1996-1999). He had some awesome writings, some conspiracy theories….very Libertarian about debt, being a GenX professional / quasi-professional in the 1990’s. He was based in San Jose. We did meet a few times. Really good advice about “letting u-b-u and giving women the finger until they decided they wanted to behave” Very MGTOW. What shocked me was that he was my age, and he was hardly some poindexter. A strapping, handsome man. He could have been the image MGTOW needed. Instead we got Paul Elam, MGTOW John……and a few others that may have good content but when they say they are MGTOW, or profess such a thing…..the Dalrock crowd will say “Well, yeah, they’re MGTOW because they’re / ugly / not masculine enough / odd remarks about phsyigomony……all of this coming from men who claim to “love” and want to “help” men. Ironically, Dal’s crowd would chant “looks don’t matter” and then judge men by their looks.

    Anyway, deepwaterwebmoved to Japan around the year 2000. His page had about 5,000 followers before it closed down. This was the late 1990’s remember.

    I found Dalrock sometime in 2012. I was trying to find ideas for our men’s group at The Salvation Army…topics to talk about. Yeah, Dlrock had some great topics…..but I was informed rather quickly that I wasn’t christian / mature enough / not red pill enough / didn’t accept game and Rollo over jesus…….and there was just an underlying theme that women were indeed “evil” and if christ died for all…..he died for women too…….and if all women are “evil” and “hypergamy” and her “nature” that “cannot be changed” well………….they were sure wasting a TON of time talking about something that could be “never changed”

    I slowly learned that just about all of them had a pokder up their ass that needed to be removed. They ended up being more catty than women.

    I liked Dalrock when he just did plain talking about a topic. There are many posts like this. Sadly, his usual gang of idiots ruined the most productive insights he indeed was trying to make.

  3. Thanks for the answer Boxer. Didn’t think it would be a whole post.
    for my part, I discovered the manosphere and Dalrock in lateish 2014. Had some run-ins with some folks while commenting. It’s interesting how snide some of them could be, but it’s the internet after all.
    I would guess he had more than just 200 regular readers, but the larger point is true, the manosphere had, or has, a small cultural footprint. Most of the old names have gone on, like Dalrock, been banned, like Heartiste, or have gotten into scams from their retard followers, like Vox Day.

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