Once on the Internet, always on the Internet. Men’s Fitness recently published, and then quickly deleted, a pretty terrible article called “How To Turn A ‘No’ Into A ‘Yes'” written by self-proclaimed pick-up artist Nick Savoy. Even the title gives me the creeps. Although the article is gone from the Men’s Fitness website, it appears to be based off of Savoy’s article on LoveSystems here.
Essentially, Savoy’s advice encourages men to continue pursuing women who have rejected them, just in case that seemingly clear and firm rejection was actually a soft “maybe” in disguise. The first piece of wisdom from the article? If a girl’s not into you at first, “plow ahead anyways.” Those are the actual words from the actual article, which sounds a lot like sexual assault to begin with. The Men’s Fitness piece then continues on the same road, outlining various methods of ignoring the word “no” in different scenarios.
Although the article tries to be careful about not overtly promoting rape, it doesn’t seem to understand the nuances of rape culture. It directly encourages men to keep trying for sex with a woman, even with a clear lack of consent. This permission then allows men to think that a woman’s “no” doesn’t mean what it’s supposed to, and that they still have a chance despite what she’s been saying. The kind of thinking Savoy’s article promotes leads to male entitlement, whether he meant it to or not. And in a nation where rapists get off without consequence, that’s not okay.
It’s caused a lot of controversy over social media as people take screenshots and pass them around. Many people have called the magazine out on the problematic ideas Savoy promoted. At first, Men’s Fitness responded only by taking out a single paragraph. But as the protests continued, they deleted the whole article from the site. Next time, don’t post it in the first place.