“Haters gonna hate.”
– The Internet
Today’s post isn’t about marketing, sales, or publicity; it’s about content. Despite writing several posts on how one should promote their work, I’ve never explained what a good product actually is. After all, a turd sandwich being sold by Ryan Holiday is still just a turd sandwich.
A good product provides people with something meaningful. Whether that means getting folks into shape, introducing the world to a new idea, or helping some dude get his life in order; quality work always gives back.
With that said, I want to tell a little story about a man who ignored this rule….
David Futrelle is a blogger who runs a site called Manboobz. His shtick is to find “sexist,” “misogynistic,” and “racist” material from around the web and make fun of it. The alleged goal, to protect women from being raped and oppressed. On paper this is a fantastic idea, Futrelle could use his platform to raise awareness about all sorts of anti-woman crimes being perpetrated around the world. The last time I checked India is having an actual epidemic of rape, and Islamic women still aren’t allowed any rights. If he played his cards right Futrelle could be a modern day civil rights hero, bringing equality to everyone.
Unfortunately that takes work. Instead of doing anything meaningful, Futrelle uses his blog to troll Redditors and male oriented websites. Essentially he simply finds something “offensive,” like women in the kitchen and “that’s what she said” jokes, and mocks them. If he’s really lucky, a site like Return of Kings or Matt Forney might publish something that’s “practically a rape manual!”*
Unsurprisingly, Mr. Futrelle’s “writings” have left him dead broke. Because he’s not contributing anything of actual substance, no one is willing to pay for his work.**
Luckily that’s about to change. Being a generous capitalist, I’ve devised a way that Futrelle can help the world and profit from his convictions.
1. Write about something real.
America is not one Max Alpha post away from revoking women’s suffrage. However, there are still millions of women around the world who are being tortured, raped, abused, oppressed, and sold into sex slavery. Exposing these atrocities would do far more good than making fun of some random blogger ever will.
2. Contribute to charity.
Futrelle should put a donate button on the bottom of each post and give the money to a battered women’s shelter. He could also plan out some pledge drives for the site and donate that money as well. Considering how familiar Futrelle is with Reddit, he would have no problem drumming up some willing participants. I’ll bet that even the “sexists” would kick in a few bucks to support a good cause.
3. Write a book and do a speaking circuit.
If Futrelle wrote something with actual substance, I’d read it. If he spoke without descending into snarky drivel, I’d at least hear him out. Assuming that he did some research and wrote intelligently about actual sexism and female oppression, like the kind practiced by the Islamic community, he could author something profound.
Sadly, Mr. Futrelle will more than likely continue down the path of least resistance. He’ll produce more meaningless fluff, live in poverty, and prevent himself from giving back to society.
* i.e. a mildly crude sex story.
** I know that in the past he’s written for Time and Salon, but he hasn’t been published in either for like six months now. Also he claimed to be out of money on his site, I did the research.