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Reddit’s TwoXChromosomes subreddit overrun with angry dudes

A group portrait of TwoXChromosomes regulars on Reddit?

As “activists,” Men’s Rights Activists seem to be good at only two things: harassing people, and flooding comment sections of websites with their endlessly repeated half-dozen talking points. On Reddit, for example, the local MRAs have been quite the little imperialists, invading a number of gender-related subreddits (like r/equality and r/egalitarian) and turning them essentially into r/mensrights-lite, which has effectively meant killing them. (The recently started r/masculism – an attempt to do Men’s Rights on Reddit without all the misogyny – doesn’t have a chance.)

Well, now the MRA invaders on Reddit seem to have set their sights on a much bigger target: the TwoXChromosomes subreddit. Yep, they’re trying to turn Reddit’s central hangout for the ladies into a boys club.

2XC– an explicitly female-oriented forum on a site (Reddit) heavily dominated by dudes — has always been a strange place. Though I am myself, obviously, a dude, I used to read it fairly regularly, finding it a welcome respite from all the “sammich” jokes and other idiot misogyny so pervasive elsewhere on Reddit. At the time, 2XC had a (completely unwarranted) reputation amongst the Reddit crowd  as an evil place full of feminazi man-haters.

Then something started happening to 2XC. That thing was dudes. And not just any dudes – MRA dudes. Regulars on r/mensrights started linking to threads in 2XC and invading en masse, downvoting anything vaguely feminist and spewing forth their standard litanies of complaint. Some of these invaders decided to stay. And so, these sporadic raiding parties turned into a sort of occupation.

No, 2XC – despite the growing number of MRA residents, including a few female MRAs – has not turned into another r/mensrights. But at times, especially when the discussion turns to some MRA pet issue, the place looks a lot like dude central.

Case in point: this 2XC thread, expertly dissected by NauticalLittleNet in ShitRedditSays. The story: a woman posts a picture of her Halloween costume on Reddit and is bugged by a rude, creepy comment referring to her breasts (something that happens approximately ten zillion times a day on Reddit). So she posts the pic again to 2XC, hoping for sympathy. Instead, she’s treated to a barrage of comments mocking her for her alleged “persecution complex.” As NauticalLittleNet shows, the overwhelming majority of the obnoxious comments (all of which garnered numerous upvotes) were from dudes, many of them MRAs.

Naturally, this sort of thing – which happens pretty regularly on 2XC – has totally changed the dynamic of the subreddit from something that was sort of a haven for Reddit women to just another subreddit overflowing with obnoxious dudery.

As a Redditor called emmster noted recently in r/feminist, some women in 2XC have basically stopped posting anything vaguely feminist for fear of being jumped on by argumentative dudes:

I’ll be getting downvoted to Hell in the comments, but get PMs that are supportive from women who feel too afraid of the judgment and vitriol to jump in. I don’t love knowing there are women afraid to voice their opinions in a space that’s for women.

Honestly, I think the sustained r/MensRights invasion is what’s taking the largest toll. It’s like they can’t stand the idea that women have a space that’s active and popular, and they have to come ruin it.

And it doesn’t help that, as Donna_Juanita noted in the same discussion, some of the 2XC mods have essentially bent over backwards to accommodate the MRA invaders and to clamp down on feminists allegedly causing “drama.”

In ShitRedditSays, emmster offers a broader take on what’s happened to 2XC

Since young men are a majority on the site as a whole, and a pretty hefty number of them haven’t had the “There Are Places I Am Not Necessarily Welcome to Pontificate on My Opinion” realization, the space becomes less of a place for women, and more of a place to talk about women. Which is a pretty big distinction. And a tricky thing to keep from happening without raising the ire of the entitled, ignorant young dude contingent.

As a reddit friend of mine put it, it all started with the “Hey Ladies, What Do You Think of My Dick?” posts. When a bunch of guys started posting questions, trying to “understand women,” which of course is a flawed goal, because women, being people, have a variety of opinions and preferences, and cannot actually be understood as a group. Some of them were actually questioning preferences on penis size, hence the name of the phenomenon.

My hypothesis is that eventually, it will be nothing but men talking to men about what they think about women.

Not that there is a shortage of such spaces on Reddit, or in the world in general.

By the way, that picture above is not actually a picture of 2XC regulars. It’s a picture of the Huutajat Men’s Shouting Choir. Which is a real thing in the world. Here they are in action:

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10 years ago

UGH. Sharculese. You have my sympathies. I am crawling through this paper, but at least it’s not … corporate deadlock under the model business act. (Which probably is interesting, but not to me.)

There’s gotta be some kind of legal paper drinking game we can play long-distance, though. I think for me it would be something like, Every time you make a declarative and uncited statement that you suspect is untrue but you hope to fix in revision, take a shot.

10 years ago

i got lucky with my first two law school papers.the first was analysis of the cavalier use of text and history in chief justice roberts majority opinion in medellin v texas, where i was able to conclude, essentially, ‘yeah, it makes me really uncomfortable to accuse the sitting chief justice of being deliberately dishonest, but i laid out the evidence and theres no other conclusion.’

the second was for a seminar on popular understandings of the constitution. that meant the only things that were off limits as sources were academic papers. blog posts were encouraged. i wrote about political speech trials in the first half of the twentieth century, which meant i got to spend time just scanning microfilm for period articles, and was able to cite everything from eugen debs speeches to lectures at holocaust denial conferences.

this is not that. im writing about the weakest, most pathetic corporations in the country. the only interesting part is trying to figure out what the causes of the breakup were. the course is actually really cool though, and i’d write a way more boring paper to be in it. the professor was the first female law professor at the university of alabama, and is exactly as badass as you would imagine a woman would have to be to fill that role. she was also on the board of tiaa-cref when they were pioneering ideas about corporate governance and her class is one of the oldest corporate governance courses in the nation. shes the only reason i even took corporations in the first place.

what are you writing on?

10 years ago

Oooh, your professor sounds cool. I’ve been tempted to take corporate law. I’m not interested in working for a corporation, but I might be interested in working against them.

My paper’s a state survey on public trust doctrine. I love public trust doctrine. I think it’s exciting, if underused and misunderstood. But this paper — oh this paper! It’s killing me. The second draft will be great though.

Your papers sound awesome. When I’ve had an opportunity to write and research, so far it’s only been a brief, memo, or oral argument. I guess I’ll have an opportunity to write a real paper next year, but it sounds more fun to be able to write a wonky paper on an interesting topic, rather than a brief on a tort fact pattern.

10 years ago

Roberts, dishonest?

[looks out window]

Yep, sun is still moving east to west, all is as expected.

6 years ago


Katrina Carter
6 years ago

“Men ruin TwoXChromosomes, only women can talk there.”
If you are seeing opinions you don’t agree with & poor contributions then clearly men are to blame, no thinking necessary, sexism is cool against men. A front page subreddit on a website with millions of visitors (& a slight male majority) will no surprise get a lot of men who read & take an interest in the discussion. You want everyone to shut up so you can hear what you want to hear, but TwoX is a subreddit dedicated to women’s issues, not an exclusive club for women, if you have an issue with that then go to /r/feminism or /r/trollxchromosomes which are the actual subreddits you seem to be looking for.

“Men’s rights are bad because yadda yadda.”
Proof would have been nice, better yet, don’t hate people for having opinions that differ from your own, perhaps you should realize that they experience the same things from feminists that you claim to experience from them. I shouldn’t have to say this because it is blatantly obvious, but men’s rights activists are both male & female. I think it is ironic that you think egalitarianism, a subreddit dedicated to insightful gender discussions from people of any gender or political opinion, is being called out when you seem to think /r/shitredditsays is a good source of information, a subreddit dedicated to mocking other people without any actual discussion taking place while making no attempt to hide their sexist or racist opinions about white men.

Well when you grow out of your white knight complex then people might actually be interested in having a discussion with you, until then i think it is best you don’t comment at all, because your articles are nothing more than silly rants against people for opposing your political opinions.

6 years ago

Go away, Katrina. Reddit is a cesspool of misogyny and racism. No one attacks white men on that site.

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