We were wrong

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Dear everybody,

On Wednesday morning Kickstarter was sent a blog post quoting disturbing material found on Reddit. The offensive material was part of a draft for a “seduction guide” that someone was using Kickstarter to publish. The posts offended a lot of people — us included — and many asked us to cancel the creator’s project. We didn’t.

We were wrong.

Why didn’t we cancel the project when this material was brought to our attention? Two things influenced our decision:

  • The decision had to be made immediately. We had only two hours from when we found out about the material to when the project was ending. We’ve never acted to remove a project that quickly. 
  • Our processes, and everyday thinking, bias heavily toward creators. This is deeply ingrained. We feel a duty to our community — and our creators especially — to approach these investigations methodically as there is no margin for error in canceling a project. This thinking made us miss the forest for the trees.

These factors don’t excuse our decision but we hope they add clarity to how we arrived at it.

Let us be 100% clear: Content promoting or glorifying violence against women or anyone else has always been prohibited from Kickstarter. If a project page contains hateful or abusive material we don’t approve it in the first place. If we had seen this material when the project was submitted to Kickstarter (we didn’t), it never would have been approved. Kickstarter is committed to a culture of respect.

Where does this leave us?

First, there is no taking back money from the project or canceling funding after the fact. When the project was funded the backers’ money went directly from them to the creator. We missed the window.

Second, the project page has been removed from Kickstarter. The project has no place on our site. For transparency’s sake, a record of the page is cached here.

Third, we are prohibiting “seduction guides,” or anything similar, effective immediately. This material encourages misogynistic behavior and is inconsistent with our mission of funding creative works. These things do not belong on Kickstarter.

Fourth, today Kickstarter will donate $25,000 to an anti-sexual violence organization called RAINN. It’s an excellent organization that combats exactly the sort of problems our inaction may have encouraged.

We take our role as Kickstarter’s stewards very seriously. Kickstarter is one of the friendliest, most supportive places on the web and we’re committed to keeping it that way. We’re sorry for getting this so wrong.

Thank you,

Kickstarter

Comments
    1. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Miles

      5) Potentially. The problem is that even if that's the case, the problem is still unaddressed. Nothing about what he could have done to cause her discomfort. Nothing about how to make her comfortable. Just to say that line specifically.

      6) Bullshit. Here was the argument:

      If you're going to defend the content, defend the content. If you're going to acknowledge that it promotes sexual assault and rape, then acknowledge that. The guy being shy doesn't impact that in any way, unless it carries the implication that it's okay for a shy guy to sexually assault a woman, because he doesn't know how else to get her to sleep with him. If you think their shyness is relevant, then you should re-assess your reasoning, since being spontanteous and exciting doesn't mean that you have to escalate physical contact until she physically stops you.

      9) That's why I followed the quote. To provide context. He follows the "Fucking ravish her" line with, "Grab her hair on the back of her head, by the base of her neck, and pull it back aggressively. Pause and stare her in the eye before going back in."

      She physically stopped you. You became more aggressive. That's sexual assault.

      I think sexual assault is inflammatory.

    2. Missing avatar

      Bet Tan on

      Thanks for the apology. Still, it came too late and I refuse to believe there is no way to refund users. Like many others, I've lost faith in Kickstarter and won't be backing projects via Kickstarter anymore.

    3. Kyle Willis on

      @Jeremy Cape

      It says she physically stops him? I must have missed that part. You said it twice, yet I see it nowhere.

      Pulling a woman's hair and looking at her means you have to come out of her personal area to allow her chin to come up so you can look into her eyes as described. Then "going back in" with your mouth to her neck, I'm assuming. It doesn't say going back in after being pushed away.

      You're filling in the gaps to suit yourself. You're obviously intelligent, you don't have to add points to this.

    4. miya on

      For men who may not, or at least have not yet, sexually assaulted a woman but are a) defending this garbage and/or b) considering this line of behavior in order to score:

      How about you enter the adult world where people converse with one another in a nonthreatening way? I can tell you what works for my boyfriend, who is in an open relationship with me and another woman (yes!) with a few casual sex partners on the side; he's a mature person who approaches women as they are, which is another human being whom he respects as such and views as his equal. He's honest about his needs. He's himself (what if yourself isn't good enough? Then IMPROVE YOURSELF, not assault someone because you have an entitlement problem, think you are owed sexual relations with a women merely because you and they exist, and you're too lazy to become a better, more interesting, well rounded person). He actually makes friends with them! And for those of you who think women are uptight cold fish that just need a "good rape" to loosen them up, we are actually pretty sexual creatures that.. wait for it.. enjoy sex.

      We just don't enjoy sex that is forced on us. We don't enjoy being touched without our permission. We don't enjoy disgusting comments from strangers on the street. No, really, WE DON'T.

    5. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Cape Cod

      Some people also want to have sex with dead bodies and children. Some people want to have sex with animals. Luckily, as humans, we've created a system of laws that ban many things that people want to do, if we find them to be immoral.

      Trying to "have multiple women" by sexually assaulting them is not trying to overturn biology. It is using our wonderful, biologically given pre-frontal cortex to control our lizard brain. I recognize that some are still ruled by our amygdala, but society has decided that's not acceptable.

    6. miya on

      @Kyle

      The whole tone of this book, a tone that is supported by statements such as force, is to touch a woman without her permission. Try mackin' on a woman in a bar by grabbing her hair and see how fast you don't have pieces of glass in your skin.

      Touching a women after having established that there is mutual interest and she is happy to be touched by you, whether it's brushing her arm or touching her hair, is obviously OK.

      But permission, consent, and viewing a woman as a human and not a piece of meat is not what this book is about.

    7. Logice Chen on

      It's a shame that the kickstarter project did make money for its creator. Nevertheless, I am grateful to Kickstarter for altering its policies and dealing with this project in a manner that recognised its misogynistic and abusive motivations.

    8. miya on

      Nobody is saying touching a woman is wrong, even during the seduction stage. It's a recommended flirting strategy for both sexes because physical contact does work.

      But that is AFTER mutual interest and consent has been CLEARLY established. Not beforehand.

    9. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Kyle

      The examples of requiring her to physically stop somebody before they should even consider slowing down

      "Decide that you're going to sit in a position where you can rub her leg and back. Physically pick her up and sit her on your lap. Don't ask for permission. Be dominant. Force her to rebuff your advances."

      Is this based on a sign from her?

      "The concept of "waiting for signs" or "Indicators of Interest" was commonplace in older pickup theory. It is 100% garbage and needs to be erased from the face of the planet."

      No. It is physical, or completely and utterly explicit. Either of which means you've clearly crossed the point of sexual assault. More proof?

      "If at any point a girl wants you to stop, she will let you know. If she says "STOP," or "GET AWAY FROM ME," or shoves you away, you know she is not interested."

      "Rub your hands up and down her legs. Make her push your hand away as you get closer to her vagina."

      Am I taking that last part out of context?

      "Let your hands roam free. Squeeze her ass. Rub the side of her breasts. Rub your hands up and down her legs. Make her push your hand away as you get closer to her vagina. Fucking ravish her.

      Grab her hair on the back of her head, by the base of her neck, and pull it back aggressively. Pause and stare her in the eye before going back in.

      After a few minutes, go under her shirt and unsnap her bra. Massage her breasts. Pull her shirt off and suck her nipples. Kiss her breasts all over. Let them melt in your mouth and hands.

      Unbutton her pants, or pull her skirt down."

      Again, she pushes his hand away, his response is to become more aggressive elsewhere, then simply continue. He tried to escalate by moving closer to her vagina. She pushed him away. He became more aggressive elsewhere, then continues on. I left out what happens after that line, but it gets pretty explicit.

      I'm not filling in any gaps. I'm reading what the guy wrote.

    10. Missing avatar

      Jessica Flores on

      The ban on seduction books does little to stop other projects that promote violence against women. For example this ban doesn't prevent a project similar to Amazon's "keep calm and rape a lot" T-shirts from being funded since its not a seduction book. While I would hope that Kickstarter would never even approve such a project for funding and certainly stop the project if it had gotten approval, from the apology I am not assured that kickstarter will take better action next time in a similar situation. I don't see major policy changes, or any other assurance that better action would be taken in the future. The apology sounds nice and the donation is a help but there is nothing even remotely sounding like a structural change being made to improve safeguards.

    11. Miles Adams on

      @Jeremy

      You wrote: "You know why it isn't there? Because he doesn't just say to make the first move. He says to make every move. Everything is decided by the man. In multiple places he explains that, as the man, it is your job to always do things first. To always decide what is happening."

      And? That approach works. It doesn't work with all women, and the ones it doesn't work on will let you know long before anything resembling "date rape" could occur, unless you ignore resistance, which is the exact opposite of what Ken suggests.

      If you meet a woman and tell her you're going to take her back to your place and fuck her brains out, and she comes back to your place, you don't really have to ask for consent. It's pretty implicit in the positive respond to the ultra-direct approach Ken recommends.

    12. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Jessica

      Kickstarter cannot, and should not be expected to, do an in-depth investigation of every person who posts up a project. In this case, somebody mis-represented their project to Kickstarter. Other information on the project was available off-site on a minor reddit that nobody knew about until a few hours before it ended.

      They made a mistake by not canceling it when the new information was brought to their attention, however refusing to approve the project based on information they didn't have is unreasonable. For the example you gave, under the statement they just provided, that shirt would fall under offensive material and not make it up on Kickstarter in the first place.

      If I could ask, what kind of structural change to improve safeguards would you like them to have made?

    13. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Miles

      See, this is the problem with books like this. It makes you think that unless somebody stops you physically or yells at you to stop, then you've got their consent. Consent is something given through positive signals, not taken away through negative ones. The challenge remains for you to find one place in his writing where he gives any indication of finding out if she wants escalation, or mentions the word, 'consent'.

      The closest he comes is in the sex portion when he says that she wants it because she's not stopping you.

      You really, really need to re-do my step 3 and read what he wrote. He doesn't tell them that they should inform the woman of their intentions. He explicitly recommends lying about your intentions.

      "You must have a plausible reason for why you're bringing her back to your place. Yes, you both kinda-sorta know it's for sex, but that's not how it works in the real world. Even if it's just to drink that wine, or check out that new Youtube video, or show her your stamp collection, you need to plan this ahead of time. Experience certainly pays dividends here, but the truth is, as long you have done a good job generating attraction thus far, you'll be fine.

      Expect her to offer some resistance when you try to bring her home. Throwing out a "I don't sleep with someone on the first date." or "No sex, okay?" will do wonders. It all helps to generate plausible deniability. If it just happened while we were in the moment she will feel much more comfortable knowing she fooled around with you. No girl wants to feel like a slut. It's your job, as the man, to make her as comfortable as possible. Also when you start to fool around, "I don't kiss and tell." goes a long, long way."

      Seriously. Read his stuff before you try to defend it. I wasn't just talking about people other than you when I wrote that post. You are, in fact, included in the people who need to read what he wrote if you're going to try to defend it.

    14. Miles Adams on

      @Miya

      You said "Touching a women after having established that there is mutual interest and she is happy to be touched by you, whether it's brushing her arm or touching her hair, is obviously OK."

      That is the exact position held by the author. You are looking at quotes that are from a late chapter in his online collection of essays that deal with what to do AFTER having established that there is mutual interest and she is happy to be touched by you. The author recommends starting with small, inoffensive touching -- whether it's brushing her arm or touching her hair.

      Which is why this comment you made:
      "Try mackin' on a woman in a bar by grabbing her hair and see how fast you don't have pieces of glass in your skin."

      Suggest to me that you don't understand the context of what you are quoting at all.

      As I said, this is a witchhunt.

    15. Missing avatar

      Lan Wei on

      Thank you for this post. Your explanation of why the project was not cancelled makes 100% sense to me. It doesn't justify anything, but thank you for explaining it anyway - this kind of call is always tough to make and it sounds like you guys made the call out of reason (albeit wrong) and not caprice, which is important. Anyway, thank you.

    16. miya on

      @ Mike

      The problem doesn't start at "date rape." That's not the magical red line where you go WHOA OKAY NOW I'M BEING A CREEPY SEX OFFENDER I NEED TO BACK OFF. You should have backed off a long time ago. The problem here is not securing a woman's interest and permission before touching her. That's where the line is drawn.

      Pushiness is another issue. If you're out looking for some lovin' and reading these books and trying to hone your game, your first tactic for success is to learn to read nonverbal cues. Coercion and pressuring is not okay. When a woman is interested and a guy is paying attention like he claims to be in order to get some action, it's obvious. But even if she's giving you nonverbal cues, you still need verbal confirmation. HANDS OFF UNTIL GREEN LIGHT "YES ABSOLUTELY."

      God this book and others like it aren't even giving men advice on how to be better, more successful lovers. They're giving them "advice" on how to treat and handle a woman as if this was a hunting expedition for a six point stag or some ducks or something, instead of telling them how to improve themselves and become men worthy of someone's else's affection which is GIVEN to you, not TAKEN from. She does not owe it to you simply because you want her or simply because you managed to talk to her. In fact, she never owes it to you.

    17. Missing avatar

      Michael Edmonds on

      Well done, Kickstarter
      Several commenters have pointed out that the only people arguing against Kickstarter's decision are men, but I looking at the comments the majority of men support Kickstarters decision as well.

    18. Laurie Thomas on

      did anyone read about 'opening sets' at the clubs? basically working the floor? and thats all well fine for people who like to flurt around, but his advice to opening sets is 'breaking reality'. Thats a whole section of doing against what 'society has to taught men to be nice and respectful to women'. Thats the 'reality' he talks about breaking. To open sets, you just walk up to a random women and forcefully shove her then 'dismiss' her, to shove her against the wall and kiss her then dismiss her. Then to repeat this several times to 'break reality'. The assumption is that she look at you in a WTF matter but 'in a good way'.

      This section clears up anyone trying to defend the material that it was out of context. Or how about his advice to just go around and touch up on people (even guys to keep high five them even if they don't want to) so you get confortable violating some stranger's private space?

      On the case of randomly coming up to a girl, no mention is there about taking the time to know a person before you start touching them. Oh, I read about the 'qualifying' section, except that these 'advice' don't follow a set order. No were in the 'breaking reality' section does it states anything of 'now that you've qualify the girl'. By the time you've starte qualifying the girl, you've already harassed her and the other 'sets'. This doesn't consider if the girl wasnt there to find some one to sleep with, if she's just out with a group of friends, if she prefers her own gender, if her boyfriend/husband just stepped out (and there fore already taken).

      There's also unnecessary emotional abuse in this section. Going out of your way to give backwards comments and giving mix signals does not set up for a fruitful relationship. Maybe if you didn't try to keep picking up random 7.5+ in hotness scale (really?) in random public places, you'll see that there's plenty of nice guys who get the girl. Its probably easier to do since women out number men in most cities.

      I've had to deal with guys whom I've told to stop, even hitting/clawing their hand off me, still come back 'to try again.'

      A guid to meeting girls? Not all women can be defined in a book written by a man who seems to only want to 'take the girl for a ride' and 'open multipul sets'.

    19. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Miles

      He does talk about brushing her arm. That's very true. However, that's the very first thing, before any mutual interest is established. Further, once that "mutual interest" is established (by her not stopping you or yelling at you, since I'm still waiting on you to find a quote from him about how to determine her interest, and those are the only things that he says should make you stop), that's when he recommends the "aggressive escalation":

      "Decide that you're going to sit in a position where you can rub her leg and back. Physically pick her up and sit her on your lap. Don't ask for permission. Be dominant. Force her to rebuff your advances."

      Since you have multiple times now demonstrated a lack of understanding of the context around these, I'd suggest you take your own advice.

    20. Melissa Macklin on

      Thank you so much for your apology. Nice to see an honest, stand up company do the right thing.

    21. T123 on

      Complete BS that Kickstarter couldn't AT LEAST put the controversial Project "on hold" in order to suspend the release of the funding to its Creator until they have time to complete their assessment.

      Even more BS is that Kickstarter continues to allow Projects to exceed their goals by 8x (or much, much more), resulting in funding for ... what?, exactly? If you are a Creator and your requirement is $2000 to finish a book or a film, then funding must STOP once your goal is reached. Otherwise, you now have more money than you, logically, know what to do with. This is particularly bad for technology gadget Projects that need a certain amount to scale production, and that's it -- anything above that and these Creators are now building new permanent profitable businesses -- something that is expressly outside the Guidelines of Kickstarter (Kickstarter is for Projects, not to fund a business venture; you are not buying shares; you are helping something creative come to life). "Kickstarter cannot be used to fund e-commerce, ** business **, and social networking websites or apps.".

    22. miya on

      "That is the exact position held by the author. You are looking at quotes that are from a late chapter in his online collection of essays that deal with what to do AFTER having established that there is mutual interest and she is happy to be touched by you. The author recommends starting with small, inoffensive touching -- whether it's brushing her arm or touching her hair.
      Which is why this comment you made:
      "Try mackin' on a woman in a bar by grabbing her hair and see how fast you don't have pieces of glass in your skin."
      Suggest to me that you don't understand the context of what you are quoting at all.
      As I said, this is a witchhunt."

      Except there are several statements where he recommends forcing yourself on her even when she gives a nonverbal cue that she is not happy with that level of touching such as pushing your hand away.

      Consent is not an ongoing thing. It's not like once you get it, you can do whatever you want indefinitely. You still need to respect her boundaries. If she pushes your hand away, you stop. End of story.

      It really isn't that hard to ask a woman what she's into. "Hey I'm into kinda aggressive, play-forceful sex, but I honor things like safewords and your ability to give or remove consent at any given time during our encounter. Are you game?" And then she says yes or no or asks questions. Use language, it was and is a crucial part of our fantastic evolution.

    23. Elizabeth Cusimano on

      Thank you for admitting your mistake, many companies would not have. It really shows the good character of the company and those who work there. I'm glad to see a force for good like Kickstarter taking responsibility for its mistakes and trying to fix them. Your donation is going to help a lot of people! Thanks for listening.

    24. Miles Adams on

      @Jeremy

      I hadn't seen that. That certainly changes my perspective. That is very not cool at all. The "No sex, okay?" thing...that really pisses me off. That is totally not okay. That is beta as fuck, and I do not approve at all.

      Okay, well, never mind then. Fuck this guy, I'm not defending him anymore.

    25. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Miya

      That's what that drives me crazy about these things. The author tried to defend himself by saying that these things work because a lot of women like BDSM. All fine and dandy, except if you ask anybody who is into BDSM what is more important: being dominant or respecting boundaries, you'll get the same answer 100% of the time.

    26. Missing avatar

      Phillip on

      Well done, Kickstarter! Your obviously sincere apology sets an example for organizations everywhere, and reflects wonderfully on yours. Your title "We Were Wrong" is absolutely the best imaginable.

      Thank you!

    27. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Phillip

      Couldn't agree more. Few companies own up to the degree Kickstarter did. It's worth pointing out that they framed it as a decision they came to independently, instead of based on the 65k signatures, the phone calls, the posts on twitter and facebook, and the protests.

      They did a good job here, but it is definitely not in the context they provided.

    28. Zoe Brain on

      You missed the Golden Moment, as it took too long to check whether the complaint was valid.
      2 hours just isn't enough, not if you're not going to filter out malicious false positives from trolls.

      Nonetheless, not only did you apologise, you paid a substantial amount of compensation, over 30 times what you would have made from this episode.

      There may be some way to improve your process here, but it's not an obvious one to me. Good Luck.

      Now for all the book's defenders... I have some very, very masterful, strong, muscular gay friends. Tell me your address and I'll send them round to treat you the way you think others should be treated. They'll take NO for an answer of course. Temporarily, before trying again. They know you really want it... after all, that's the behaviour you're espousing.

    29. Tiffany Lee Brown on

      Good work, Kickstarter. It's too bad the annoying dude got funded, but in the aftermath people have opened up a conversation that clearly needs to happen.

    30. Barbara Wilson on

      Thank you for making the change for the future.

    31. Brendon on

      @Jeremy, I can't tell if you're defending him or attacking him because you've made point for both sides in your initial post from last page (or at least the first one I saw). I don't want to get too far into it since I've been talking about it all day but I think that while you have a more rounded look at the topic than most people, I think you're still missing some points. The context of pulling her hair and the so-called "rape-y" is within the context of previously established consent. He's talking about how to approach sex after there's already a mutual understanding that both sides are going to have sex.

      This part that you quoted: "If at any point a girl wants you to stop, she will let you know. If she says "STOP," or "GET AWAY FROM ME," or shoves you away, you know she is not interested."

      He's using exaggerated examples to illustrate his point. He's not saying that's the line and only up until that point should you keep going. He's just giving examples of whens he's not interested. I think the author used exaggerated language to emphasize his points and thus people interpret his meaning as being literal or extreme. Here's an article that has a more rational view of this topic from a woman who was initially offended when she heard about it and then read the series of posts that the author made and is now defending his message:
      http://esthertung.com/did-anyone-actually-read-the-reddit-post-behind-above-the-game/

    32. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Brendon

      Addressed every point you made, but I'll summarize. You said, "He's talking about how to approach sex after there's already a mutual understanding that both sides are going to have sex."

      Show me where he has them establish that understanding. At each point, he has been clear that he you are not to take signs from her as indicative, and to "ALWAYS ESCALATE!" I provided context of each quote. His establishment of that understanding comes from the moment you've set her as an object of desire. In his own words:

      "Never, ever, ever, wait for a SIGN before you escalate! You will miss out on the vast majority of chances if you sit around waiting for SIGNS. Men are notoriously bad at reading women's minds and body language. Don't think that you're any different. From now on you must ASSUME that she is attracted to you and wants to be ravished. It's a difference in mindset that makes champs champs and chumps chumps."

      Further he operates, both in his response which I've already read and destroyed, on the assumption that consent is assumed, and must be taken away. Consent must be given, so I'm giving you a challenge. Look through his stuff and find one point in his material where he explains how you will know that she's consenting.

      For the record, I've read his stuff. All of it. Until you try to defend it, you should too.

    33. Missing avatar

      deleted on

      This user's account has been deleted.

    34. Missing avatar

      Kayci McLeod on

      Thank you x1000.

    35. Aron Campisano on

      STOP CENSORING CONTENT, KICKSTARTER!

      You have NO EVIDENCE that "seduction guides" result in violent behavior of any kind! NONE!

      VERY DISTURBING that a special interest group can have content removed from your site so easily!

    36. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Brendan
      Also, the reason you can't tell if I support him or oppose him is because I have no dog in this fight. I don't care which side I'm on. I care a lot more about being right. If you are going to try to refute any of the points I made in my post, feel free. As of now, you have only shown that you did not read it.

      So, let's address the link you posted:

      "Ken Hoinsky’s tips on physical escalation (the ones that are really getting around the lefty Internets) are meant for use only after you’ve gotten to a certain stage of dating, not on the first meeting."

      Some. Not all. Not most. The first quote she puts in there, for example, is in Part 5: Flirting, Touch & Conversation, while dating isn't until Part 6. In fact, at the first instruction of dating, he recommends lying to the person explicitly and with the intent to trick them into doing what you want.

      "You must have a plausible reason for why you're bringing her back to your place. Yes, you both kinda-sorta know it's for sex, but that's not how it works in the real world. Even if it's just to drink that wine, or check out that new Youtube video, or show her your stamp collection, you need to plan this ahead of time. Experience certainly pays dividends here, but the truth is, as long you have done a good job generating attraction thus far, you'll be fine.

      Expect her to offer some resistance when you try to bring her home. Throwing out a "I don't sleep with someone on the first date." or "No sex, okay?" will do wonders. It all helps to generate plausible deniability. If it just happened while we were in the moment she will feel much more comfortable knowing she fooled around with you. No girl wants to feel like a slut. It's your job, as the man, to make her as comfortable as possible. Also when you start to fool around, "I don't kiss and tell." goes a long, long way."

      Once you have gotten them alone to the place where you've explicitly told them you don't want sex? That's when the second quote she posts come in. You remember that one, right? The one saying that signs don't matter, and she needs to physically stop you (as he clarified in his important note on resistance)...

      And she is completely correct that he isn't going from "zero to hero". He's showing you how to, step-by-step, sexually assault a woman. It is worth noting that this is how he is telling you to set up your physical contact. I have no idea where the author of the article you're reading gets, "It is not sexual assault when someone I’ve been sleeping with initiates sex, but it is if he continues after I say “stop”.", since he's telling you how to sleep with the person for the first time, and to just assume each step of the way that she consents unless she physically stops you.

      Speaking of physically stopping you: "her push your hand away as you get closer to her vagina. Fucking ravish her.

      Grab her hair on the back of her head, by the base of her neck, and pull it back aggressively. Pause and stare her in the eye before going back in."

      So, in this scenario, you have lied to her to get her alone, you have aggressively escalated physical contact (being sure to ignore every sign she gives you), and started to grope her. She finally does something he considers a rebuke (physically stopping you), and the response he recommends? Escalating the aggression, staring her straight in the eyes, then continuing on anyways.

      Finally, she brings up an irrelevant point that he suggests getting to know the individual you're planning to sexually assault and rape. That would be a defense except that most rape is committed by people the victim already knows. All the book is doing is trying to teach people how to rape more effectively.

      Seriously, I've read his stuff. I've analyzed it. I have no stake in this, except for pointing out that this is, in fact, exactly as bad as it is being portrayed to be (even though some people tried to twist the words in some places to justify it).

    37. Rumtopf on

      I just want to thank commenters like John Funk and Jeremy Cape for debating with the guys who are (badly)defending the material. Cheers!

      Zoe Brain, that last part of your reply was NOT cool by the way. Threatening sexual abuse, even in jest, is never okay.

    38. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Aron

      I agree that it was probably a mistake to ban the entire genre. Most likely, this is an attempt to never have this conversation again, about whether this book or that one has crossed the line from generally creepy to outright dangerous.

    39. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      @Rumtopf

      Thanks.

      I was also thinking of making that point, but I've been doing a pretty excessive amount of commenting anyways. Also worth noting is that homosexuals really do not need that particular stereotype being propagated.

    40. Aunti Kincade on

      Thank you so much for taking a stand to discourage violence against women in words and deeds. I admire the ability of an important organization such as yours to admit when they have made and error and then takes steps to correct the error. I am deeply grateful.

    41. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Cape on

      I hate how the comments don't update sometimes, unless you comment.

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      Elizabeth Miller on

      Thank you so much for this handsome apology and taking well-thoughtout and effective action to prevent further such projects. My husband and I've long respected and admired Kickstarter and have supported several projects. I know this project's type of hideously reprehensible proposals occur in our imperfect world, but these ideas need to be smacked down whenever encountered. Well done!

    43. Beef on

      I admit I was very pretty upset when I heard that this project had been given the go-ahead, but I understood that given how little time you had in which to cancel it it wasn't likely it'd be able to be stopped in time. Yeah, it's sad that this book was funded using a website as great as Kickstarter, but you've acknowledged that it was a mistake and are actively looking for ways to make amends. Good on you, Kickstarter - I admit that I was expecting less.

      Also, while I'm not trying to brush this under the table, I am going to say that I really doubt this book will be a success anyway. Normal books get published by being taken to a publisher, who reviews them and decides whether or not they'll be profitable. This book, though? It's one more sleazy, terrible pick-up book in a sea of sleazy, terrible pick-up books already out there, not to mention the stuff which is already readily available on the internet free of charge. And this one never would have been published by any respectable publisher because they'd take one look at it and think 'I don't want to be associated with this'. This book probably won't sell well, and I wouldn't even be surprised if plenty of stores decline from selling it at all.

      Honestly, I think that this project going down in flames of failure and controversy is probably even better than it never going ahead at all. At the very least, it's what made Kickstarter decide to set down some rules to stop this happening again in the future.

    44. Duke Drizzt on

      It cracks me up how many stupid ppl are on here. It's encouraged me to write a guide on how to rape and demoralize women but in a nice way. That's all we men *cough* dogs *cough* do anyway. It will also feature a snippet in there for you women that are horrible at blowjobs. Insider secret, we don't like teeth so please keep that in mind cuz when I say no stop and u don't, you're raping me. We all know how everyone here feels about that.

    45. Missing avatar

      Greg Samson on

      @Aunti: If only there were actually steps they could take to correct the error. Donating large amounts to an anti-sexual-assault organization is good, but wouldn't it be better of them to do something that would help prevent women from getting sexually assaulted in the first place?

      I have a lot of trouble believing that there's nothing they can do about the funding. I'm sincerely hoping that they are putting in place processes to stop this sort of thing from happening in the future, but I am still not likely to use Kickstarter in the future as a result.

    46. Geert Docter on

      @ Mike Maring I have read the cached project. The overall tone is that you are taught how to negotiate your sexual life and not how to manipulatie women. The premise is that the intention is to help men and that there is equality between men and women.
      So I can see your point that when someone calls the project mysogynistic and inducing women's abuse, he or she implies that men are bad and women are somewhat stupid and helpless by default.
      Still, I think we men and women all are somewhat stupid and helpless and prone to manipulation. Even if the manipulator is just very good at negotiating.
      The project smells like proclaiming selfishness and having no respect for or even compassion with your negotiating partners, because respect and compassion are not mentioned anywhere which is strange if you write 1000 words about sexual relationships.
      It would have been a good project if it had taught people, men and women, how to deal with disappointments in sexual relationships, instead of how to prevent them.
      So to me, Kickstarter makes a right decision.
      And its not like the project can't look for fundament elsewhere.

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      Terra Blu on

      Sin to use a similar platform, to give space to projects of dubious morality! Oh well, the way is great and varied, I never cease to amaze me!

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      Katryna Wade on

      Here's better advice for guys wanting to put themselves out there sexually without crossing the line to sexual assault--for example, when kissing: go in 70-80% of the way, pause, and look into her eyes. If she is staying still for it or leaning towards you, if she looks at you back and seems interested, then finish the kiss. If she leans back, turns her head to the side, or otherwise indicates that she's uncomfortable (pushing you away, etc.) then back off and apologize.

      Some women will feel shy and might look away even if they want a kiss, but I guarantee you that if a guy is leaning in for a kiss I can tell and if he pauses I have time to think, "Do not want, back away" and do so. It is a little uncomfortable/awkward when this happens but it doesn't cross a line. It also should be mentioned that you should only do this after establishing a conversation/interacting with her for a while--don't just decide five minutes into conversation that you need to kiss her now.

      Contrast this approach with the "be aggressive and make her rebuff you" approach. If a woman is not interested in sex, just reaching out and touching her gives her no time to react and process the situation. Requiring that she have the split-second timing to stop someone reaching out to touch her basically says, "Hey women, you need to be ready for someone to touch you at a moment's notice so that you can prevent people from infringing on your bodily autonomy!" It promotes a culture where women have to be ready at a moment's notice to defend themselves.

      I can tell you from experience that if you're not expecting someone to touch you, it's entirely possible that you will freeze up until the window for reaction is gone. Trigger warning, but someone at my work didn't like it that I had reported someone sexually harassing me and came up to me in the breakroom, rubbed himself against me, and asked if I was going to report him too. I didn't just freeze up, I actually didn't understand what was going on until he was done and out the door. I wasn't expecting it, so I didn't stop it.

      In the harassment review later on, his defense was "if she didn't want me to do it, why didn't she stop me?"

      This project was harmful and I'm glad it was taken down, even if after the fact. Thank you Kickstarter.

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      John Funk on

      @Duke Drizzt - if a woman was giving you oral sex and you suddenly had a change of mind and told her to stop and she didn't, it would absolutely be sexual assault.

      I'm not sure what you're getting at, maybe trying to "expose some hypocrisy" or whatever, but it's not going to work. I really wouldn't be pointing fingers about stupidity if I were you, seeing as how you don't actually understand anything we're talking about.

    50. Sparky Lurkdragon on

      See, now that's how you apologise. I do wish more would have been done, but I can understand being between a rock and a hard place. Thank you.