By David Futrelle
Roosh V is having another sad. Just three weeks after Amazon stopped selling nine of his books, the date rape expert, baking enthusiast and former Most Hated Man in the World has decided to shut down his flagship Return of Kings website. In a post on the site today, Roosh announced that
I’m putting ROK on an indefinite hiatus so I can take a break from the daily grind of maintaining the site. I don’t know when the hiatus will end.
The reason? A mixture of deplatforming and nobody giving a shit about him any more.
The first factor for this hiatus is that site revenues are too low. We’ve been banned from Paypal and countless ad partners, which forced me to lay off the site editor last year and also lower payments to regular contributors.
Huh. Apparently deplatforming hate sites works.
This started a negative spiral of declining content quality, site traffic, and revenues.
“Declining content quality?” Dude, the “content quality” on Return of Kings was a big fat zero to begin with. How exactly can something get worse than worst?
Even the beloved comments section, which many see as the highlight of ROK, was badly hit when Disqus banned us. Currently, ROK receives half the traffic of its peak and less than one-fifth of the income.
Your schtick has gotten old and tired, dude.
The second factor is that I’m burned out. Keeping ROK updated, writing books, posting articles on my blog, doing live streams, and maintaining the forum has put too much on my plate.
Aw. Work is hard.
Out of everything on that list, working on ROK has become my least favorite activity because duties are centered more around editing other people’s work than creating my own.
I can see why he might feel burned out editing crap for his crap site every day. I feel tired just skinning the headlines on Return of Kings.
I’m sure many of you understand that we are in the early stages of a censorship wave that will sweep through society. Scoundrels like myself get banned first, and then soon the hammer will come down on anyone who dares to share the truth.
Roosh wants us to believe that “censorship” — by which he means getting kicked off of platforms like PayPal for violating their rules on hate speech — is driving him out of business. While it’s certainly true that deplatforming makes life more difficult for hate-speechifiers like Roosh, that’s not why his traffic is down.
No, that slump in traffic is far more likely to be the result of two other factors. The first has nothing to do with Roosh himself: the fact is that traffic has fallen considerably at independent media sites across the political spectrum due in large part to changes Facebook has made since the 2016 election to the way it handles its news feed. (Indeed, Facebook used to be the single biggest social media source of traffic for We Hunted the Mammoth by far, but now it’s been overtaken by Twitter. )
But I’m guessing that most of the fall in Roosh’s traffic can be attributed to the fact that people — Roosh fans and Roosh critics alike — have just gotten sick of his shit.
Roosh first gained notoriety as a pickup artist selling a distinctly rapey kind of dating advice, winning himself worldwide infamy after a supposedly satirical article calling for the legalization of rape on private property. For a time, Roosh was able to successfully monetize his notoriety with endless outrage-by-the-numbers clickbait articles on Return of Kings.
But ultimately it became clear to his fans and critics alike that the profoundly unoriginal Roosh had run out of things to say, and they stopped paying attention to him. Even his publicity stunts don’t garner him any publicity any more. It’s hard not to be reminded of the famous Onion headline: “Marilyn Manson Now Going Door-To-Door Trying To Shock People.”
The weirdest thing about Roosh’s decline and fall is that it’s not like misogyny has gone out of style. To the contrary. While Roosh bemoans the unfairness of a world that no longer cares what he says, Jordan Peterson is soaking up all the attention once given to Roosh and then some; meanwhile, other internet misogynists who came up alongside Roosh — most notably Mike Cernovich and Stefan Molyneux — seem to have little trouble getting people to listen to them. The difference? For better or worse, these guys know how to keep it fresh.
Hopefully all of these terrible men will end up no more than footnotes in hisotry. In the meantime, let’s wish Roosh Godspeed on his journey to oblivion.
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