The first order of business is define the very nature of the Red Pill. As a reader pointed out, the Red Pill way of looking at life is, in actuality, a praxeology. This was a new word to me, as well. Here’s the definition of that word:
(From Wikipedia) The deductive study of human action based on the notion that humans engage in purposeful behavior, as opposed to reflexive behavior like sneezing and inanimate behavior. According to its theorists, with the action axiom as the starting point, it is possible to draw conclusions about human behavior that are both objective and universal. For example, the notion that humans engage in acts of choice implies that they have preferences, and this must be true for anyone who exhibits intentional behavior.
Going forward, I’ll refer to the Red Pill approach to life as a praxeology because this word fits very well. The Red Pill is not an ideology nor a philosophy. As a writer, I strive to be precise with my words. The Red Pill praxeology can be defined as this:
Observing and making conclusions about human nature and human behavior based on a firm grounding in reality without undo influence by changeable and unrealistic social expectations. In effect, taking the Red Pill is unplugging from the matrix (hence, the movie reference) of socially and culturally damaging expectations, especially in regards to how men and women interact – socially, romantically, and sexually. This also applies to one’s own behavior and perception of one’s self.
Within the Red Pill, there are three specific divisions, MRA, MGTOW, and PUA. Here are definitions from a blog post I wrote several weeks ago:
1. MRAs – “Mens Rights Activists”. These are the cultural and political soldiers who call attention to the often egregious inequalities in our current legal and social system. If you’re looking for true equality between the sexes, these are the people with whom to align and support. This group also gets the most mainstream media coverage, usually by lazy or ideological-driven “journalists”.
2. MGTOWs – “Men Going Their Own Way” (It’s pronounced “Mig-Tao”) Welcome to the group of men who reject most of the social expectations foisted on the male sex. These are the expectations of self-sacrifice, following the approved life script that insists on cow towing to the feminine imperative, and being cultural cannon fodder for a socio-economic system that views men as completely expendable or simply invisible. MGTOWs ain’t havin’ any of that crap.
3. PUAs – “Pick Up Artists”. Want to learn how women think and act in the context of attraction and seduction? This group of men (and women!) are the part of the Manosphere that has a deep and truthful understanding of the minds of women. Sometimes it’s not pretty to read or watch because PUAs know that women are fundamentally predictable when it comes to the attraction patterns they have for men. [Update: PUA is a subset of Masculine Self Improvement (MSI).
It’s important to know that these three divisions do have conflicts that sometimes erupt into public social media. Mostly, it’s conflict over ideas and that can be good. PUAs, MRAs, and MGTOWs are very independently minded but fundamentally operate within the same praxeology. Very occasionally, the conflict amongst these groups gets rather personal and unpleasantly snarky.
In my ongoing efforts to find Tweets for retweeting and quotes for Tweeting, I recently came across a bit of a conflict between two influential Manosphere writers. The whole conflict came about because of a documentary film currently in production. Cassie Jaye, the documentarian, started digging into the nature of the Red Pill and found the voices of Men’s Rights Activists (MRAs). The film, when complete, will cover just that subject.
The film’s creator also did an “Ask Me Anything” on Reddit where she answered a variety of questions including why she didn’t cover the PUA/MSI and MGTOW divisions within the Manosphere and Red Pill praxeology. It’s worth reading through those questions and answers.
As an aside, any discussion about men’s issues is almost always met with abject terror along insane levels of abject rage. Insults fly; logic, reason, and facts are burned to cinders when a broader audience responds to Red Pill ideas. This is not necessarily bad. Such heated emotions – especially from feminists and ideological “progressives” – shows very clearly that people care about such things. The fear and anger also shows that Red Pill ideas strike a strong chord with all the fundamental truths about human nature and human behavior.
From the Brietbart piece, Cassie Jaye’s comment is very telling:
For my previous films: I was able to garner mainstream media attention, I was able to rally support and assistance in post production, my friends would share it with their friends, people (strangers even) would happily engage with me in long conversations about those films, but it seems this film topic REALLY scares people (and/or just makes them angry). It scared me too when I first began this project, but I still was curious to find out what happens. I think, sadly, many people would be very happy if this film just faded away.
Note that the film’s Kickstarter campaign was very successful. That’s a very good sign. It should be out in late 2016 and I urge all my readers to keep an eye on its progress so that it doesn’t just go away. It’s my observation that Red Pill and Manosphere discussion of relevant men’s issues will continue to grow. This will serve to bring key individuals into the spotlight, for better and worse. Personally, I don’t mind percolating in the background but wouldn’t mind a chance in that spotlight.
The Twitter discussion was motivated by the complete absence of the other parts of the Red Pill in the Cassie Jaye documentary. Then, the discussion somewhat addressed who “owns” the Red Pill praxeology. Here is where things get interesting. From a legal point of view, the term “Red Pill” has actually been trademarked! I checked the TESS database from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Here’s what was displayed:
The first live (active?) trademark that could apply to this discussion is from April 13, 2010 and is still owned by Vin DiCarlo Inc. The legal ownership (trademark) of the Red Pill name is clearly part of the PUA realm. Do you have any doubt that he’s a PUA? That being said, it doesn’t appear if Vin DiCarlo has done much with the name except keep the trademark alive.
Doing some simple URL searching, I also found that there is also a production company with the name Red Pill. It’s rather inactive with the latest copyright notice being from 2013 and no active links are displayed on its only web page.
The use of the Red Pill phrase grew along with the Manosphere. It’s spread into the mainstream media as well as some of the general public. A one-on-one coaching client mentioned the Red Pill subreddit in passing with a bunch of guys. They knew about it but only as “that subreddit that hates women”. The term “red pillers” is used as a pejorative when mentioned on the mainstream Internet media. Let’s not forget that any attention is good attention right now.
As the term Red Pill is, in essence, just a label for a praxeology, there can be little in the way of ownership unless someone is attempting to make money from the use of the term as the title of a business entity. If anyone wants to have a legal tussle with Vin DiCarlo, go for it. That would be interesting and bring even more attention to Red Pill ideas.
As a title, any realm of the Manosphere can use it. A Voice for Men used the term as a tag line for quite a while. Though some in the ‘sphere harbor ill will towards AfM and MRAs in general, the Red Pill is a unifying identity. The word “Manosphere” is also a unifying identity although several attempts were made by various guys to reject it. Good luck with that. Both Manosphere and Red Pill are here to stay given the years of social identity momentum, especially on the ‘Net.
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