People You Meet When Writing About Feminism (And How to Respond)

When you spend enough time writing on the Internet, you learn to recognize the different kinds of commenters that exist, and exactly which ones are going to show up on your article. If you’re writing about feminism, as we so often do here at P-Mag, you get used to a very specific subset of people, good and bad. I will show you exactly what to expect and how to reply.

Hostile Neckbeard MRA (Who Followed a Link from Reddit)

*dons fedora* “You stupid feminists don’t know anything! You can vote! You have ladies’ nights, which means there’s actually a matriarchy! I’m a masculinist! Get back in the kitchen!”

Recommended Response:

A gif of Conan O'Brien kicking a man in the groin.

A gif of Hans Moleman from The Simpsons.

The Condescending Mansplainer

“No, you see, that’s not how it works. I am a man, so I know more about this topic despite the fact that you are a woman and have actually lived it.” May also tell you not to be so angry and/or that it’s just biology.

Recommended Response:

A gif from The Avengers.

The Concern Troll

Hatefully judges people for having sex, using birth control, saying certain things, wearing certain things, being fat, and so on, then claims it’s for their own good.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Amy Pond from Doctor Who.

A gif from Sherlock.

The White Feminist (TM)

Quotes Jessica Valenti, Eve Ensler, and Caitlin Moran. May whitesplain to alleviate guilt.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Kool-Aid Man.

A gif of President Obama.

The Overenthusiastic Radical Ready to Burn Everything Down

Laces up combat boots, shouts slogans while filling backpack with spray paint and lighter fuel.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Homer Simpson blinking the lights captioned "Fight! Fight! Fight!"

The Academic Feminist Who Reduces Everything to Theory

Mentions Judith Butler, bell hooks, Katherine McKinnon, performativity, or the evils of pornography. Comment reads like Master’s thesis, though the commenter may or may not actually understand the theory she is referencing.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Anderson Cooper.
The “I Can’t Believe We Still Have to Protest this Sh*t” Jaded Misanthrope

Reminisces about the real activism of the ’60s, marching for Roe v. Wade. Laments about kids these days, how nothing will ever change.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Artie from Glee captioned "preach."

A gif of Justin Timberlake on the Simpsons captioned "Word."

The Feminism Newbie 

Recites Feminism 101 lessons in slightly condescending tone.

Recommended Response:

A gif from "Airplane."

The Tumblr-Based Social Justice Crusader

Lectures you about your language and tells you not to speak for a group you don’t belong to, even they they also don’t belong to that group. Copies and pastes something all the cool kids have been  reblogging.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Queen Latifah on SNL.

A gif of an owl cocking its head.

The Person Who Thinks Every Problem Comes From Chemicals, Medication, or Vaccines

Recommends lentils and kale, tells you to fix depression by thinking positively and getting exercise, posts links to junk science sites about vaccinations.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Robin from How I Met Your Mother captioned ""

A gif of Liz Lemon shotgunning a pizza.

The Thoughtful Commenter Who Must Have Followed a Link From P-Mag

Says something awesome, of course.

Recommended Response:

A gif of Jon Stewart with hearts over his eyes.

A gif from Friends captioned "let me love you."


By [E] Liza

PhD student. Knitter. Brooklynite. Long-distance dog mom. Reluctant cat lady. Majestic unicorn whose hair changes color with the wind.

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