14 comments on a post about an ad of a man being abused. 94 comments on a post critiquing a Feministe post. 15 comments on a post about masculist views of social welfare policies. 255 comments on a link to a Shakesville post about rape of men, mostly talking about how Shakesville got it wrong.
Guys, we have a problem.
Judging from our comments section, the single worst problem facing men today is– no, not coercive gender policing, not men living five years less than women, not the treatment of men as success objects, not the way male rape survivors have their experiences ignored and denied, not even the family court system or false rape accusations– but feminism.
You get this behavior, sometimes, in Internet Social Justice Warrioring, which Ami Angelwings has named “Moby Dicking.” Someone has a target they’re obsessed with, and they will not let it go come hell or high water. They derail completely unrelated threads to discuss the topic they’re Moby Dicking. They see every issue through the lens of their monomania. Like Ahab sailing the sea, harpoon in hand, in search of the whale that ate his leg, they search the comments sections of the Internet to find those who have not yet been told the great truth that feminists sometimes don’t pay as much attention to the experiences of male survivors as they should.
But that’s not the only or even the biggest problem the masculist movement faces, and to hammer at it as the Most Important Issue obscures other important issues. While criticism of feminism is certainly possible in a masculinist movement, focusing on that to the
exclusion of other issues ends up hurting men overall.
Constant critique of feminism actively harms NSWATM as a blog. Noah and I have both had the experience of feminists– feminists who care about men, feminists who engage with masculist issues, feminists who are The Good Guys– saying “I love your blog, but I’d never comment there.” Our comment threads are literally chasing away allies. That is not a good thing. If we create a more welcoming comment space, we can have a diversity of opinions that create a more flourishing discussion.
There is a very good single-issue blog for discussing the failures of feminism. It’s called Feminist Critics, and it’s worth visiting. This, however, is not a single-issue blog about criticizing feminism, and we do not intend for it to become one. We are going to talk about making the world a better place for men, because that’s what we’re actually here for, and the comment section should respect that.
Therefore, the moderators and contributors will be watching threads for signs of imminent Moby Dicking. If a thread seems to be derailing in an unproductive direction, we will ask the commenters to refrain from Moby Dicking. Repeated ignoring of the contributors’ directions on this matter will lead to banning.