Why I Stood Up To A Sexual Predator “Pick-Up Artist” and How We Took Him Down

Editor’s Note:* On November 1st (Saturday) at 1 am, Jennifer Li saw a video on-line of the so-called “dating expert” Julien Blanc that left her so horrified, that she had to take action. Working with a group of activists and journalists who later became friends and with on-line allies, within less than a week Jennifer had gotten Julien Blanc kicked out of Australia and brought world attention to a misogynous business community of so-called “pick-up artists” selling hatred and exploitation of women as dating techniques. 
In her own, sometimes slightly vulgar words, this self-proclaimed, “angry asian girl” tells why and how she took action—and why she now is going to step back a little and let others continue the good work.  
Please note: to readers, media and other bloggers, you are welcome to repost this anywhere, in good faith, if you like, but please link to the original post on Japan Subculture Research Center, especially if you are using just part of the essay. Thank you. 
Jennifer Li standing up for the rights of women and taking a stand against sexual predators--in action, in words, and often very acerbic funny words.
Jennifer Li standing up for the rights of women and taking a stand against sexual predators–in action, in words, and often very acerbic funny words.

 

                One who is present at a wrongdoing and does not lift a hand to prevent it, is as guilty as the wrongdoers

—a native American proverb

 

I started the campaign at around 1am on Saturday, after I saw the video on Tumblr. I was scrolling through  and saw the first video I’ve ever come across on Julien Blanc. It was the Japanese one.

This was the post.

Watching it, each second was more horrifying than the next. I’ve had no experience taking anyone down, so I didn’t know how I was going to do it, but I had so much anger in me that I needed to channel it somewhere. I started the #takedownjulienblanc hashtag and @Jennli123 twitter account without knowing if it would ever pick up.

When I watched this video–

Julien Blanc, "dating expert", brag how easy it is to force Japanese women to put their mouths on your dick.  街で女の頭つかんで顔にチンコを当てまくった。
Julien Blanc, “dating expert”, brag how easy it is to force Japanese women to put their mouths on a man’s dick. 街で女の頭つかんで顔にチンコを当てまくった。

there were a million things going through my mind; how he was abusing his white privilege, how he was abusing his male privilege, how he is dehumanizing Japanese women, how he is committing sexual assault, how he is teaching this to other men, and how this will affect all women, everywhere. And when I looked at the company employing him, Real Social Dynamics (RSD) and their hub Real Social Dynamics Nation, and I did not like what I found.

I was outraged, with him especially. How dare he violate these Japanese women’s’ spaces! How dare he pass on his disgusting views and methods onto other men! This guy was in essence, assaulting women and getting away with it. And not just getting away with it— he was REWARDED for it. I could not believe that he could go about doing this without consequences.

He is perpetuating the idea that Asian women basically mean a “free for all” for predators. He emboldens men to approach Asian women and harass them. Men like him create problems for women like me because I am an Asian woman, and I don’t need men getting horrible ideas from watching videos like this to sexually harass me and invade my personal space. I am Chinese, but the type of people who will perpetuate this type of behavior won’t care what type of Asian I am. There are repercussions to Asian women everywhere; this guy is saying that it’s ok to have yellow fever, and to enact out sick power fantasies on Asian women. But not just Asian women—all women. He’s an equal opportunity predator.

When I first started researching him, I found little toxic gems on his website, PimpingMyGame.com, that were ludicrous. : “DEVELOP PANTY-DROPPING MASCULINITY WITH THIS ROCK-SOLID STRUCTURE TO SELF-GENERATE THE POWERFUL EMOTIONS GIRLS CRAVE.” Who the hell talks like that?

PIMPING it dude.
PIMPING it dude.  DEVELOP PANTY-DROPPING MASCULINITY. Yep.

But a part of me wasn’t laughing. This is an organized group of men who band together and teach other men how to assault women. There will be no accountability through RSD. Julien has too many fanboys in his community.

When I first started this, I had almost no strategy; I just threw things and hoped they stuck. I knew he was going to Tokyo. I called the Japanese Embassy, reported him, wrote to the press, did the hashtag thing, started a change.org petition.

I’m not a  journalist but I did my best to investigate him. I looked through this Twitter feed @RSDJulien, retweeted some of his tweets to expose him, including the Domestic Violence wheel and choking one. (His Twitter account has since been removed).

I caught the eye of Anonymous and Jake Adelstein around that time (November 2nd). I was already organizing with a bunch of folks, including some people in Australia, and I decided to drop that video into the Global Asians group that my (Japanese-American) friend Mandy is part of too. The ladies there started organizing right away; writing press releases on their own. They also lurked in the forums and started saving a lot of RSD stuff—before they could take it down.

Thanks to someone in Australia, we found out that he was hosting his seminar in the Como Melbourne, which is how I started the first petition. It worked.

The Como Melbourne was the first hotel to cancel a Julien Blanc/RSD seminar after Jennifer Li and friends started their #takedownjulienblanc campaign.
The Como Melbourne was the first hotel to cancel a Julien Blanc/RSD seminar after Jennifer Li and friends started their #takedownjulienblanc campaign.

Anonymous helped find his Eventbrite page, so I tacked on the Hilton Garden Inn and the Courtyard Seattle onto there. The Hilton Garden Inn Austin cancelled pretty quickly. The Courtyard Marriott did not have a large social media presence, so I had to personally call them five times before they got the idea and cancelled his event. Eventbrite pulled after that, and so did AWeber. After Eventbrite pulled, though, it was very hard to find the next venue location. The Mercure Brisbane victory was all Aussies; I didn’t even know he was being hosted there.

I disseminated the information, and the same applied to the St. Kilda location. The protest was organized by Aussies. I forwarded people to that Facebook page, but they did all of the work.

While I didn’t have a set strategy when I first started, I gained my footing once the movement started growing organically. I would target private venues that were hosting him, and try to cut off the hosting for their online propaganda.

I got people  in touch with one another; I realized that people were passionate about this and were prepared to do what they had to do to take RSD down, and my job was to de-duplicate their work and get folks who were dong similar things in touch with each other. I publicized relevant information that I had without jeopardizing whoever was organizing so people could build on the momentum. I made sure to only promote information that I thought was accurate; I did not want to discredit all our hard work by sending people to fake RSD accounts or waste their time on wild good chases.

There were people who had known about Julien Blanc before, and already had messages he had sent them and I promoted their stuff without disclosing their identities. By Saturday Nov. 8, I was pretty burned out and had no sleep (thanks to the Australia/ Washington DC/Japan time difference) and Julien Blanc was deported. Japan is already organizing on its own ban, as is Canada, London, the UK, and Brazil. This has become bigger than me; it’s become a global movement.

There’s always the argument that you shouldn’t feed the trolls—that by giving them attention you make the problem worse. That’s bullshit. You can’t solve problems by ignoring them.

The only way to take someone like him down is public shame. It’s to show that anyone associated with such a person and their organization like this is tarnishing their own name. I know this is giving him more publicity. Hopefully it’s the type of publicity that will shut down sadistic, hurtful and deceptive sociopaths like Julien Blanc and poisonous organizations like RSD down. This Asian girl is tired of this type of crap.

I’m not tired of it because I’m “Asian” either. I’m tired of it because I’m a woman. I can’t stand by and watch women being hurt by men like this.

RSD and Julien are on the defense; many of the videos I have watched are now taken down and made private, and RSD has had to shift servers to Liquid Web, who we are also petitioning. Something has obviously stuck. We have been able to shut down RSD’s events in Melbourne, Brisbane, Austin, and Seattle, and gotten Eventbrite to stop hosting their events, and had AWeber and Rackspace to stop hosting their content.

There isn’t any fight, even for a just cause, without some collateral damage. There are fans of Julien who have dug into my personal life, pulled up my writings, my on-line profile, and taken things I’ve said out of context. I’ve been accused of being a racist and hating white people, especially men.  They try to troll me.

I understand how that works. When people don’t like the message, they attack the messenger.

This shouldn’t be about me—it should be about whether it’s okay for men to deceive, harass, hurt and/or physically assault women for their amusement.

It’s not.

I don’t hate anyone because of their gender or race. I do strongly dislike men who hurt women for their own amusement and spread that message of schadenfreude to other men. And I do strongly dislike white people who think it’s ok to treat someone of a different race in a derogatory manner because they think they will get away with it. It’s a toxic cycle and I hope that I’ve helped raise awareness of it.

I don’t think the entire PUA (Pick Up Artist) community are bad guys. I think it’s sad that they seem to only be interested for women as targets for their sexual conquest and not in achieving any kind of real, caring and lasting relationship.

This isn’t my life work, but I wanted to stand up for what was right and for the rights of women to be free from harassment and violence.

I will still be active in the social justice movement  but I may no longer be leading the fight against Julien Blanc, RSD, and their ilk. It’s time for me to step back a bit; I’ve already done my part. People have gotten my message on RSD and Julien Blanc. The people of Brazil, the UK, Japan, and Canada know best how to handle the RSD situation in their countries. This movement has very capable people. I will continue cheering the people who continue what I’ve started.  I’m not planning to lead the movement globally anymore.  I’m tempted to leave everything in the hands of the community but people are saying I should petition Nevada Secretary of State about the RSD business license and I do live in the United States. Duty calls. I want to say thank you to everyone who took up the cause, everyone who supported me so far.

We made a difference. We are making a difference.

 

The difference between a pick-up artist & getting picked up for crimes in Japan.

updated on November 19th, 2014

What’s the difference between being a “pick-up artist” and getting picked up for crimes in Japan? 

If you’re a white male in Tokyo, you can do what you want. I’m just romping through the streets, just grabbing girls’ heads, just like, head, pfft on the dick, head on the dick, yelling, ‘Pikachu,’ with a Pikachu shirt (on). — Julien Blanc, dating expert at Real Social Dynamics

One of the most reviled misogynist “pick-up artists” is coming to Japan this month. He may find he is not very welcome. It’s one thing to teach dubious techniques to socially inadequate men on how to bed women; it’s another thing to grab Japanese women and force their face into your crotch.

In Japan, that’s not “aggressive dating” — that’s forcible indecency (kyōsei waisetsu), a crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison. I wonder if our visiting dating adviser is aware of this. He certainly wasn’t the last time he was in Japan.

Who is this charming fellow? He is, according to his Facebook page, “an executive coach for Real Social Dynamics, the international leader in dating advice.” According to a puff piece in The Daily Mail, “Pick-up artist Julien Blanc charges men $3,000 to learn his secret tricks.” He recently made a meaningless apology for his actions on CNN. Why doesn’t an apology mean anything? Because it’s not enough to exonerate you of criminal charges.

These secret tricks he brags about include grabbing women by the neck and choking them, psychological manipulation, lying and, in Japan, apparently sexually assaulting women while “cutely” saying “Pikachu, Pikachu” again and again to lighten the mood. I don’t think Nintendo would approve. The rest of the article is here in the Japan Times 

Among the possible charges you’ll see listed below is one that is not: violations of the Tokyo Public Nuisance Prevention Ordinances (迷惑防止条例).  It carries a penalty of less than months in prison or a penalty of 500,000 yen  (6月以下の懲役又は50万円以下の罰金に処する。常習の場合、1年以下の懲役又は100万円以下の罰金).  In the case of a “regular offender” and Blanc seems like a regular offender (professional offender?) if there ever was one, up to a year in jail or 1,000,000 yen fine. This is the law that the Tokyo police use to arrest gropers on trains, sometimes over zealously as recent cases show. But then again, Blanc has filmed his own damning evidence of himself committing the crimes.

The official police term for guys like Julien Blanc is chikan (痴漢) which translated into English means “molester, sexual pervert.” Julien Chikan Blanc. Try saying “Chikan, Chikan” instead of “Pikachu” next time you talk up the ladies—they’ll know to run away.

Julien Blanc, "dating expert", brag how easy it is to force Japanese women to put their mouths on your dick.  街で女の頭つかんで顔にチンコを当てまくった。
Julien Blanc, “dating expert”, brag how easy it is to force Japanese women to put their mouths on your dick. 街で女の頭つかんで顔にチンコを当てまくった。

A reader of the blog kindly wrote to us and suggested a number of ways that Mr. Blanc’s past actions here (in Japan)  could be considered crimes. In an extreme case, he might also be responsible for the sexual harassment or assault done by his followers. I spoke with an ex-prosecutor who agreed that the points made were valid and for you edification and that of Mr. Blanc and his followers I’ve posted them below.  Crimes in bold would be the most probable charges. However, keep in mind that many cases of sexual assault require the victim to lodge a complaint  (shinkokuzai/親告罪) or they can’t be prosecuted.  That may also be the reason when Russian self-proclaimed rapist hasn’t been punished. 

From Yoshiaki-san (who has asked not to have his full name used for reasons you can probably surmise).

I already reported this matter to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department.
It is them who decide which laws apply to this matter, but I think following laws will do the jobs to take him  (Julien Blanc) down.

第六十一条(教唆)
Article 61. (Inducement)
1 人を教唆して犯罪を実行させた者には、正犯の刑を科する。
(1) A person who induces another to commit a crime shall be dealt with in sentencing as a principal.
2 教唆者を教唆した者についても、前項と同様とする。
(2) The same shall apply to a person who induces another to induce.

第百六条(騒乱)
Article 106. (Disturbance)
多衆で集合して暴行又は脅迫をした者は、騒乱の罪とし、次の区別に従って処断する。
A person who assembles in a crowd and commits an act of assault or intimidation thereby commits the crime of disturbance and shall be sentenced according to the following distinctions:
一 首謀者は、一年以上十年以下の懲役又は禁錮に処する。
(i) A ringleader shall be punished by imprisonment with or without work for not less than 1 year but not more than 10 years;
二 他人を指揮し、又は他人に率先して勢いを助けた者は、六月以上七年以下の懲役又 は禁錮に処する。
(ii) A person who directs others or takes the lead in stirring up others shall be punished by imprisonment with or without work for not less than 6 months but not more than 7 years;
三 付和随行した者は、十万円以下の罰金に処する。
(iii) A person who merely follows others shall be punished by a fine of not more than 100,000 yen.

第百七十六条(強制わいせつ)
Article 176. (Forcible Indecency)
十三歳以上の男女に対し,暴行又は脅迫を用いてわいせつな行為をした者は,六月以上 十年以下の懲役に処する。十三歳未満の男女に対し,わいせつな行為をした者も,同様と する。
A person who, through assault or intimidation, forcibly commits an indecent act upon a male or female of not less than thirteen years of age shall be punished by imprisonment with work for not less than 6 months but not more than 10 years. The same shall apply to a person who commits an indecent act upon a male or female under thirteen years of age.

第二百八条(暴行)
Article 208. (Assault)
暴行を加えた者が人を傷害するに至らなかったときは,二年以下の懲役若しくは三十万 円以下の罰金又は拘留若しくは科料に処する。
When a person assaults another without injuring the other person, the person shall be punished by imprisonment with work for not more than 2 years, a fine of not more than 300,000 yen, misdemeanor imprisonment without work or a petty fine.

Mr. Blanc’s unwanted advances on the poor woman working at the convenience store, fall into another category of crime as well.

He is attacking a girl on duty. So this one can also apply to this matter. I think I will contact the convenience store’s main office to send a report of damage to the police. He and his group members are too stupid. All stores have 24-hours-365-days-recording security video cameras. Only Japanese word they can read was pikachu so they did not notice that.

第三十五章 信用及び業務に対する罪
Chapter XXXV. Crimes against Credit and Business

第二百三十四条(威力業務妨害)
Article 234. (Forcible Obstruction of Business)

威力を用いて人の業務を妨害した者も,前条の例による。

A person who obstructs the business of another by force shall be dealt with in the same manner as proscribed under the preceding Article.