antifeminism are these guys 12 years old? bullying crackpottery creepy dark enlightenment davis aurini doubling down drama kings dudes who look like anton lavey empathy deficit entitled babies evil SJWs evil women excusing abuse false accusations grandiosity gross incompetence harassment hypocrisy irony alert lying liars mantrum men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny no games for girls no girls allowed none dare call it conspiracy nonpology playing the victim PUA red pill

JordanOwen42 on the Couch: Two wannabe Sarkeesian muckrakers react to the horrible news that she's been telling the truth

JordanOwen43 tries the talking cure
JordanOwen42 tries the talking cure

So what do you do when a fondly held fantasy crumbles? That’s a question that both Davis Aurini and Jordan Owen have had to ask themselves this past week, when something they both desperately hoped was true – that Anita Sarkeesian had lied about contacting the police about death threats she’d gotten on Twitter – was shown convincingly to be false.

Both Aurini and Owen have personal and even professional reasons for wanting the terrible things people say about Sarkeesian to all be proved true: they are, after all, the two bumbling would-be filmmakers who are trying to raise money for a feature-length “documentary” targeting Sarkeesian.

And both had a personal stake in this particular story. Aurini, as I noted in a previous post, wrote a blog post a week ago titled “Did Anita Sarkeesian fabricate her story about contacting the authorities?” in which he reported a conversation he had with a San Francisco Police Department spokesman who said he could find no record of her reporting these threats. While Aurini didn’t directly claim she had lied about reporting the threats, his post was positively dripping with insinuations:

Did Ms. Sarkeesian report this to the FBI instead of the SFPD? Did the Officer who she reported to hate women, and throw her report in the garbage? Did she eat some bad burritos, and was this all just a fever dream?

None of the above, actually: The police spokesman looked harder and discovered that Sarkeesian had in fact reported the threats to the SFPD, which had then passed the case along to the FBI. Oops.

Owen had gone a bit farther, declaring the charges against Sarkeesian to be “LEGIT” on Twitter, and posting a now-deleted YouTube video in which, he now admits, he “jumped the gun” a bit, “getting overly excited and exuberant … when it looked like we had Anita cornered.”

So how did the two react to the news that they were wrong?

Aurini went uncharacteristically silent, trying his best to avoid the subject. It wasn’t until nearly a week later – yesterday – that he bothered to respond in a blog post that is a model of desperate duplicitousness.

Instead of frankly admitting that he had attempted to smear Sarkeesian using information that had turned out to be untrue, he deflected, saying blandly that “details have changed,” and going on to attack those who suggest he take some responsibility for his earlier smear job:

Some voices in the peanut gallery have been demanding that I apologize, or that I retract my allegations (funny, that – I don’t seem to recall making any allegations), but this just goes to show what sort of child-like minds we’re dealing with.

He then tried to argue that the “revelation” that Sarkeesian had in fact told the truth somehow muddied the water even more:

This revelation about the FBI doesn’t answer all of our queries, rendering GamerGate nothing but a tinfoil-hat in neck-beard chic – quite the contrary, it compounds them!

After rattling off a list of questions he thinks still need to be answered, and a list of publications he thinks have mishandled the story, he tries to convince his readers that “[t]his doesn’t undermine GamerGate – this vindicates it!”

Jordan Owen’s response was a bit more human, and a lot more interesting. The fact that he had been wrong about Sarkeesian actually seemed to plunge him into something close to an existential crisis. Well, the fact that he had been wrong – combined with the fact that the fundraising for The Sarkeesian Effect has not been going as well as he and Aurini had hoped.

Last Saturday, while his partner was still maintaining radio silence, Owen posted a bizarre video on YouTube in which, lying on the couch in an apartment that looked like it had just been hit with a tornado, he admitted that he’d jumped the gun, declaring Sarkeesian a liar before all the information was in. And he somehow managed to spin the whole story into one in which he was the primary victim.

In the angry, rambling, and nearly hour-long video, Owen described how worn down he was by the constant criticism he’s gotten on the internet since he and Aurini launched their fundraising appeal, lamented how little the two have managed to raise thus far, and pondered quitting the project entirely. He complained that the project had taken him away from his true passions – music and writing – and left him feeling drained and belittled. “I know that I am sincere in my opinions,” he groused.

This is not some bullshit fabrication. I know that. And I have to tell myself that and I have to be resilient every single time I sit down and comment on this because if I waver for even an instant everything will crumble around me. And the social justice warriors will just say, “see, I told you so.” And that’ll be that.

Think about that level of pressure before you have the gall to take me to task for getting overly excited and exuberant in one of my videos when it looked like we had Anita cornered.

Yes, that’s right, a guy trying to raise money to make a film attacking a woman who’s already under attack from seemingly half the internet is complaining that people are attacking him on the internet.

And he seems to feel not an ounce of empathy for her.

While Aurini seems to be a bit of a snake-oil salesman – a bumbling con artist, but a con artist nonetheless – I have no doubt that Owen is indeed, as he says, sincere. A man who’s spoken openly about being bullied as a child, he honestly believes that he is the victim here – and that Sarkeesian and her allies are the bullies.

He’s also angry at and openly envious of Sarkeesian for being able to raise the money she did for her videos while he and Aurini have had to struggle to raise the money for theirs.

His rambling video is a fascinating psychological document. If you don’t have the patience for the whole thing – which you can find here – I suggest you at least watch the much shorter video below, which offers some notable selections from Owen’s lament along with some commentary which is sometimes on the mark and other times a bit presumptuous in its psychological deconstruction of the man on the couch.

TRIGGER WARNING: The video contains images from a Flash game that depicts Sarkeesian with cuts and bruises on her face.

Oh, SPOILER ALERT. Owen didn’t actually shut the project down. He managed to put this little psychological meltdown behind him. He and Aurini are planning to go ahead and start filming – even if they don’t get all the money they claim they need for the project.

It’s all faintly ridiculous, and I almost feel a little bad for the two of them. Until I remember that the two are contributing in their own way – with their videos and their “journalism” – to the harassment that Sarkeesian has been facing ever since she first announced she would be talking about sexism in video games – harassment that we now know included bomb threats sent to organizers of the Game Developers Choice Award when they presented Sarkeesian with an award last March.

Aurini I think is hopeless. But Owen, for all his rage and self-pity, seems at least to have a tiny bit of humanity left in him. He knows what it’s like to be bullied. Maybe at some point in the next few months he’ll come to understand that he and his collaborator are doing the same thing to Sarkeesian that the bullies did to him – and pull the plug on a video project that, however farcical it is, still has the potential to do real people real harm.

I doubt it, but I guess I can still hope.

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7 years ago

My brother is a bit obsessed with this former classmate of his. He hasn’t seen the guy in years but still brings him up and laughs about things he said or did in the past. If I fart or burp in front of he says “James did it!” However, that’s as far as it goes. He doesn’t harass or abuse him. He did use to bug a man he found amusing at the gym sometimes. But he stopped when my dad noticed what he was doing and explained that the teasing was bothering this man. He didn’t mean any harm. He just didn’t know he was being a nuisance. And my brother is much lower functioning than Jordan Owen. I’m really not buying the Asperger’s excuse.

7 years ago

@Howard – it wasn’t his only excuse, but he did through his Asperger’s into the mix. At one time, I did believe him when he said he wanted to do better. He dumped his channel, deleted all the VFX stuff, and told his subscribers that he was no longer going after VFX and asked everyone to back off too.

A little after that was when he started focusing on Gail Dines. He acted like he honestly believed that she was out to destroy pornography. He made dozens of videos. Like he’d take a videotaped lecture by Dines and go through it, almost line by line.

This is why I cringed when he focused on Anita Sarkeesian. He won’t let it go until he loses interest on his own or he gets too much blowback that it makes it hard for him to do his thing without everyone jumping on him. He’s received a little blowback now, and you see how he handles it.

Anyway, that’s my interpretation of him. But in fairness, I’ve been told that I’m unnecessarily harsh on him because reasons.

7 years ago

@theladyzombie: “Long story short – for whatever reason, Jordan Owen interjected himself into the drama and started going after this kid too. The videos have long since been deleted, but he used to rant, rave, and scream on camera at this kid, with vague threats about being made to pay for his dishonesty.”

I’ve been a subscriber since way back in Jordan’s VenomfangX and anti-PUA days, and if I recall correctly, Jordan only went off the handle at Venom in response to his video where he said that the holocaust was God’s punishment for the Jews rejecting Christ. And he did help stage that intervention with Venom’s parents.

And yeah, hard to believe, but back in the day Jordan was very anti-PUA (and not in that “blackpill” Elliot Roger-way, but the “this is a fucking scam and a cult where manipulative sociopaths teach other people to be manipulative sociopaths”-way). That’s why a lot of his old subscribers (even non-feminist ones too, I bet) find his recent alliance with a redpiller sleaze like Aurini to be ten kinds of fucked-up.

“A little after that was when he started focusing on Gail Dines. He acted like he honestly believed that she was out to destroy pornography. He made dozens of videos. Like he’d take a videotaped lecture by Dines and go through it, almost line by line.”

Once again, to be fair, she kinda was out to destroy pornography. Then again, it’s kind of ironic that Jordan Owen, who has criticized radical feminists as compromising their ideals for allying themselves with the anti-choice, anti-woman religious-right in their anti-porn activism, has sided with the adult of those misogynist, arm-punching bullies grew into. Jordan Owen has become to the manosphere what he has accused Gail Dines and Adrea Dworkin of being to the religious-right.

Speaking of which, an entertaining yet relevant video:

7 years ago

The video I was remembering was exclusively about Asperger’s Syndrome and his experience with it. If I’d come across one where he was using it as an explanation of his hounding someone into an emotional meltdown, my alarm would have gone off. Sadly, no such luck.

Anyway, I was updating myself on his current views last night when I actually looked up and realized a debate between him and a “social justice warrior” had been going on live for some 55 minutes. (It was being advertised on the video I was listening to.) I clicked, and watched for a while. (What I saw was, FWIW, very calm and civil on both sides.) One of the 2 reasons I hit the Sleep button, however (the other one being it was 1 am), was jordanowen42’s attempt to insist the major problem with feminists is they have this text, feminist theory, that they filter “everything” through, “exactly like religious people”. You try to argue with them and they go “This is not true! It isn’t in the bible!” See, when you’re a sociologist who’s identified a bias (say, sexism – we all know it isn’t the only one) that’s coloring the very basis of how your society was built, applying that lens to all aspects of said society to test your hypothesis makes you a bible literalist.

I look forward to the day he decides to rally against evolutionary biologists. After all, they’ve had the nerve to study, analyze, measure, and document their observations about something pretty damn fundamental, call it a theory, and expect people who come in trying to prove them wrong to have working knowledge of it. Cultists. Cultists everywhere.


Additionally, have a look at his comments here. (Warning – watch the actual Aurini video at your own risk. It’s chilling.)

One of the things I found different about him back in the day was how he’d go out of his way to avoid being willfully blind. In the videos I saw, he’d never gloss over problems with the side he’s supporting, or ignore valuable contributions from the side he’s trashing. Well – that’s simply not happening in the above comment section. He’s tacitly or openly endorsing malicious vomit because it’s coming from an ally, and I’m guessing that’s because he’s now faced a fraction of what the brave heroes he’s egging on have been piling on Anita and other feminists for years. Also, he’s this close to proclaiming false rape accusations are rampant (he’s already proclaimed a bunch of nonsense about divorce).

It’s like watching a 10-car pile up and feeling guilty for not being able to look away.

7 years ago

Apologies, I meant to just link to the video’s page and all the comments, not post it directly. I don’t seem to know how to do that here, so I expect clicking the YouTube icon in the lower right corner of the player will get you where I meant.

7 years ago

I wouldn’t be surprised if Manospherians had submitted complaints to the FBI concerning this stupid GamerGate thing and the Feds ignored them. They probably think the organization is full of “radical feminists,” or something. To all the ‘Spherians out there, here’s a tip: threatening to kill someone and their family over the a Internet is a federal crime, the whole GamerGate thing is not.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
7 years ago

As entertaining as Owen’s pity party is, I find Aurini’s response in some ways even more amusing…finding out that Anita’s claims were valid actually raises even more questions?!?

Of course it raises more questions. Like:

Why is Destro still hammering on about this?

Why was he so quick to jump onto this bandwagon before any verification?

Why is he unable to make a straight retraction?

What’s up with his manchild partner here?

Is there any situation in which he cannot frame himself as the wronged party?

That’s only the tip of the iceberg. See! Lots of new questions have been raised!

7 years ago

jordanowen42’s attempt to insist the major problem with feminists is they have this text, feminist theory, that they filter “everything” through,…

So do scientists. It’s call “the facts”. His problem isn’t with opinions. His problem is that he doesn’t like the facts.

7 years ago


“Additionally, have a look at his comments here. (Warning – watch the actual Aurini video at your own risk. It’s chilling.)”

There’s a part of me that wants to believe that the real Jordan Owen is tied up in a basement somewhere while an imposter is posting this kinda shit and working with Aurini. And just look at Jordan’s reaction some other Sarkie-Truthers refusing to support his project over having Aurini partnering with him.

7 years ago

Kee-rist, watched the video.

“They told us that all we had to do was work hard, and the money would come.” Interesting. Susan Faludi found this a common thread with the men (white men, in this case) in her book ‘Stiffed’, this being sold a bill of goods about how the world worked; work hard, claim your reward. Of course when the economy tanked, and these men lost jobs and opportunities, she found many of them blamed women and/or POC; they didn’t look up, so to speak, they looked sideways or down to cast blame.

Just… interesting to me that he started his odd little diatribe this way.

Also that he drinks at what he seems to have timed out in his head as a Dramatic Pause. And that he appears to be in a utility closet.

As a Canadian, I feel it is my duty to apologize to the rest of the world for this guy. Like, I don’t even. Boggling.

7 years ago

So this guys existential crisis boils down to

‘wwaaahhhh Anita Sarkeesian got more money than us. How dare the world value well researched and thought out arguments over our attempts a slander? HAD THE WORLD GONE MAD? ‘


7 years ago

Yes, I’m going to have meltdowns and bad days and ask people to clarify, but at least I don’t act like MY BRAIN IS MADE OF GENITALS.

Snerk! My son is on the spectrum. I do not tolerate genital brain behaviour from a nine year old who I love more than my own soul. I will not tolerate it from some whiner on the net. (also, may I please use that line? it is awesome!)

7 years ago


Of course!

After all, they’re going to complain about people calling them dicks- and I can, to some degree, see their point there- so, ta-da! Gender-neutral version for when people are thinking with organs that most certainly are not their brain! 😀

7 years ago

To Chris Wilson: Which Aurini video was it (the one where he’d talked to the officer)? Was it the “Did Anita Sarkeesian fabricate her story about contacting the authorities?” video or something else? BTW, name’s Frostbite883 (or if you prefer, Frostbite or Frost).

Theresa Anders
7 years ago

Hahaha an article on Jordan!!!! Oh why do I stay away? I’ve been gone from whtm far too long 🙂

7 years ago

Yeah, weird. I wonder how he identifies himself on the phone to this police spokesperson. It’s true that as a citizen you can ask for information about public cases and expect a valid response from the police — but it’s exceedingly difficult to make the police look up information that’s not readily handy — unless you work for a reputable media outlet, then the cops are suddenly motivated. That loser sure as shit didn’t tell the truth when he IDed himself on the phone. I wonder what magazine/newspaper he lied and said he worked for.

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