juicy meat #2: femininity coaches on social media, preliminary notes

“juicy meat” is an ongoing series analyzing media content. This instalment contemplates femininity coaches on social media.

“Femininity coaches” are trending right now. They’re plying their trade on Youtube, TikTok and elsewhere. Lots of commentators say elements of this are “problematic”, but what actually explains the phenomenon? Some early thoughts…

Why Femininity Coaches Now?

  1. Cultural backlash against “Female Chauvinist Pigs”, a phenomenon best exemplified by the Call Her Daddy podcast. Certainly true, right? Femininity coaches reject the Call Her Daddy woman but stop short of outright “social conservatism”, a welcome compromise.
  2. The bitter internet lurkers favourite explanation and sometimes the explicit conceit of the content: hypergamy. Femininity coaches can help you secure a “high value man”, that’s the hope. Women definitely complain about the quality of men in the current day so maybe the stakes are just that high.
  3. Pure fantasy. The content in question has virtually no practical relevance for most of the people consuming it. This is clear from many “comments” and obvious more generally. This explanation is best seen in light of the immersive and intimate quality of the digital media environment. You’re curled up in bed alone in your apartment and a “femininity coach” ambushes you on TikTok.
  4. Women’s desire for feminine intimacy with other women. Straight women desire lots of intimacy from other straight women.* That said, stuff like woman-on-woman hair-brushing has surely declined in the era of the smartphone. Maybe alluring imagery on said smartphone fills the gap? Do current-day men (including “high value men”) really want women to be “feminine” in the style of this content? It’s iffy.** Is this all a woman-on-woman fantasy-projection?

*See: ASMR, fodder for any number of future “juicy meat” posts.

**To be clear, I’m not speaking for myself. I’m not taking a position any which way but playing the objective social analyst.

juicy meat #1: A beauty influencer’s monologue on work, class and adventure

“juicy meat” will be an ongoing series analyzing media content. Content being the “the juicy piece of meat carried by the burglar to distract the watchdog of the mind” according to Marshall McLuhan. Further context for this particular document will be provided at a later time.

“Yeah, so… to go back to just everything I’ve been talking about. Ummm… There’s a topic in the anti-work subreddit that really spoke to me and I’m showing you right here it says ‘anti-work is not a right vs. left issue, this is a top vs. bottom movement, everyone deserves to have a livable wage, every single person no exceptions. No one should have to work until death or work multiple jobs just to survive. Don’t let multi-billionaire corporations pit us against each other, this isn’t a social issue, it’s an economic issue that negatively effects all of us.’

I believe there’s a lot of social engineering happening right before our eyes that is dividing us, it’s dividing the people, the working class, where we fight against each other while those at top they get to basically just control everything and they’re engineering these false narratives that are pitting us against each other. If you think about it, the top %1, there’s very few of them compared to the rest of the world and everyone else and imagine if we put aside our differences and worked and helped each other and understood each other more. We see each other as enemies rather than brothers and sisters and we have a common enemy which is a very small percentage of people who are puppeteering everything, who own everything, and I truly believe people are waking up from this, they’re starting to see beyond the veil that’s in front of us.

I know this year was very tough for a lot of people around the world because of just.. a lot of the uncertainties with the future uhh.. inflation of course, what’s happening with money. There’s been a lot of civil unrest around the world too so… I didn’t come in this video for solutions it was really just more to have like an open dialogue and discussion with you on this because most people are not happy with their jobs, they don’t feel valued, they have meaningless work, they have soul-sucking jobs that are robbing them of their time and energy where they can allocate that to things that they enjoy, they love.

I remember growing up and going to school and being told this was how things worked and if you follow the rules and you’re a good person, you’re a good citizen, you will be rewarded. Now that I’m older and I see the world through a new lens, through the lens of someone who’s an adult, who’s in this economic system, that is so far from the truth. It’s the corrupted people who are winning and who are passing off the laws and rules and those who are decent, decent people who are taxpayers, they are the ones who are getting robbed, they are the ones who are getting blindsided by the system and [I] think people are just fed up.

I think people just want sovereignty. I think people want to be able to pursue their dreams so now we have to reevaluate what is the future going to look like… I think this is a good note that I can end on… is that in life you can make so many different plans and be prepared but there’s so many elements that are completely out of your control and being anxious about things you have no control over will only make things worse. And so, the best advice I can offer that I used myself when I was feeling anxious and I was in debt and I didn’t have a job and I had to figure my future out… was to learn. Be a self-learner, you have so much knowledge at your disposal now compared to when I first started out and you can learn so much and learn things that bring you joy, learn things that you’re good at, learn things that can help you create a better future for yourself. And in a way, yes, it is scary but it’s also exciting that means it’s a new adventure, there’s new things to be created and to be learned and… you have to ask yourself where do you want to start. Don’t be scare of the unknown, see it as an invitation to grow as a person and also it’s exciting, you never know where it’s going to take you right?”

YouTube, fandom and “intimacy”

Youtube’s Intimacy, Fan Passion and Digital Eye Contact

“When we surveyed our teen and Millennial subscribers, 40 percent told us that YouTubers understood them better than their friends or family.* But a whopping 60 percent of them told us that a creator has changed their life or view of the world.”

“This embrace of openness by both fans and creators has led to a stronger link between them and the traditional teenage fan club. Sixty percent of those same subscribers tell us that the community they form with other fans of their favorite YouTubers is stronger than those they form around traditional celebrities from TV, music, or film. And earlier in the book I mentioned that the same percentage tell us that a YouTube creator has changed his or her life or view of the world.

When I asked Tyler about this, he explained that even the format of vlogging encourages connection. ‘YouTube is so intimate because it’s a YouTuber talking directly into the eyes of the viewer,’ he said. ‘It’s physically so close to the screen, it feels like you’re with your friend.’

But I believe that intimacy goes even deeper. When you first encounter actors, you’re likely encountering them performing a role. Their success depends on your believing their portrayal of someone they are not. With YouTubers, it’s the opposite; their success depends on your knowing and liking who they actually are. That doesn’t just lead to a situation that’s more intimate; it’s the definition of how intimacy is built.”