This post isn’t an indictment, but nearly an examination of principle for myself – and perhaps others – that I am trying to formulate regarding book reviews and promotions. It’s an acknowledgment of the fact that we need to review and promoting books in the Alt-Right/Manosphere while retaining on our honest and integrity in the process.
The manosphere, reactosphere, and the Alt-Right in general has it’s own fair share of “Buy my shit” types, who are trying to make a living off writing, being an e-celeb/public figure your family has never heard of. Nothing is wrong with this or making money from matters you invest your time in, but we should examine the ethos behind back scratching, even if it’s for people we really like and for reasons we’ve written about thoroughly on our blogs.
So what separates the good from the bad? How do other people know? Can they mistake our “glowing reviews” for just echo-chamber circle jerking low-life’s that are trying to make a quick buck off the beta saps?
A man’s reputation is all he has and as any politician knee-deep in a scandal can tell you, it can be destroyed in an instant. This is especially true in the online world, where a person’s word is their bond – and their action/money sometimes. Many scammers exist, and the alt-right is no exception. So how do we stop ourselves from looking like one – or better yet not becoming one? It’s my job and that of others to sort the wheat from the chaff.
Well, are we consumerist drones who buy what we don’t need, or are we trying to simply keep the cash in the circles we value and invest our time in? It’s not a simple answer necessarily. I’m sure you’ve all seen pleas/demands/suggestions like the following:
“Buy My Self-Improvement Book And Your Life Will Never Be The Same!”
“Score hot chicks in the Philippines”
“Hot babes will jump your balls after you read about my epic conquests.”
“Bang, Bang, Bang a zillion different countries.”
In some way, shape, or form, we then review each others books in a generous manner. Yes, the posts, tweets, and articles help the google search index rankings, get your name out there, and generate some good ole buzz. Well, are we being honest with ourselves and the people who might see our reviews?
Notice though that the ratings will never be worse then a 3 out of 5, and even if the knowledge doesn’t apply to our life’s situation in any way, we encourage other people to buy it because they might benefit from it. Okay, fair enough. Maybe they will. However… and that’s a big,
If it hasn’t benefited us in some way, can we honestly tell other people it will benefit them? Anecdotal evidence is what people want and expect when you review a book. They don’t want to know if it’s helped a bunch of nameless people around the world, they want to know if it’s helped you, or else they would read about Joe Kim’s review of the book written from a laptop in Vietnam.
So should one review a book that directly doesn’t apply to them and whose tenants and advice they won’t be able to utilize at that particular time? Again, perhaps.
Okay, I have a small dog in this query. I’m now married. Reading books such as Roosh’s “Bang” or even Matt Forney’s “Do The Philippines” are great for someone who is single, needs to learn game, and has a raging boner that is never satisfied. But what if you aren’t single? What if you are past the stage of spinning plates?
This doesn’t mean I’m dissing the books, I just don’t know if I can review them and be like, “Yea, this book is great, I applied it, and it’s something I want to do.” While I actually quite like Matt Forney, I need to find another way to help him out or promote his book, that doesn’t make me feel disingenuous when I promote it Instead, I should buy and review one of his other books that might be a more useful, yet entertaining consummation of my time. Trolling For A Living anyone?
What if you want more? Or you are in a different season of your life?
For instance, I’m married and I have a kid on the way. I’ve taken on a whole new set of responsibilities in my quest to start a family and “time management” is now one of them. Books that seem like a quality time investment would include Mike Cernovich’s “Gorilla Mindset” and Quintus Curtius‘ “Pathways”. ( I’ll be finishing up my reviews on these which will hopefully do these books justice.)
Now I suppose you could still be in my situation and enjoy an entertaining read of one of Roosh’s Bangs, but that’s up to you.
I just however can’t justify that investment of time. Time you see, has literally become a “filter” in determining what books I should or should not bother with -its made choosing fiction even more difficult. My desire is to keep my money in the alt-right when I can.
If I ever want to help build the communities and the “tribes” that are mentioned, I’ve got to vote with my credit cards, so to speak as well as my voice. Using my voice properly, truthfully, and genuinely is of utmost importance however to my reputation and to the reputation of those I vouch for.
We need to think VERY carefully about how we do that. Integrity matters.
I can’t stress this enough which is why I worry when I see the usual flood of book reviews from semi popular manospherians anytime someone in the manosphere publishes material for a price. Is the book actually good? Will people who stumble upon the manosphere suspect its just filled with a bunch of people trying to make money and dismiss it? I also don’t want to become one of those “scammers” or “back-scratchers” in how I write reviews and even to some extent, why I write them. I dont even accidentally want to be perceived as such. While I understand we all need to make our money – and I have a day job for that – I emphasize the following…
Our word is our bond.
I’m to the point where I can only honestly review a book and promote it – assuming its good and I like it – if it will help people going in a similar situation to myself, or if I’ve been there and I know what they need. So I suppose I could recommend books on game or the Philippines by authors I like such as Forney, but only to people who are single, need game, and could use a trip to the Philippines. While my best friend might not be able to handle Pantheon, he may be able to use Gorilla Mindset. My newly single friend however might enjoy “Do The Phillipines”, and Matt being an entertaining writer making it all the better.
I just have to make sure this is clear and that if I think something is poorly written, bad, or just simply obtuse; I point it out honestly and objectively. I suppose nothing is harder then being objectively honest to and about people you like, and I am going to experience this first-hand. Expect many book reviews upcoming.