Alyssa Bereznak Just Reminded Us That Women Can Be Predators Online Too

Alyssa Bereznak is making us females look bad. I'm ashamed on behalf of our sex that she said those bitchy things. In her article, she accuses a world champion of Magic: The Gathering of being a liar and a creep. In reality, her predatory and trollish behaviour makes her the creepy one.

First of all, let me say up front that I totally buy the stigma associated with online dating. I know online dating sites like RSVP have been around for yonks now, but I can't help but think that it's for desperados — a last resort. Alyssa's piece about her OKCupid experience serves as a reminder that there's a good chance you'll end up wasting your time on someone like her, whose elitist attitude you would have not been interested in from the get-go had you met her in a real-life situation.

Earlier this month, I came home drunk and made an OKCupid profile. What the hell, I thought. I'm busy, I'm single, and everybody's doing it. Sure, I'd heard horror stories, but what was the worst that could happen?

The fact that you don't know when you've had too much alcohol already says a lot about you. Any guy will tell you that there's nothing more unattractive than a drunk girl falling all over the place and having no idea how stupid she looks. The fact that you don't know your limits when it comes to alcohol — and that you're using being drunk to justify your actions — doesn't make you look very credible.

There's no point wondering what terrible things could have happened. The worst that did happen in this situation was that you joined OKCupid and f**ked with some poor guy's head and then publicly humiliated him. You talk about OKCupid being like "the online equivalent to hanging out alone in a dark, date-rapey bar", but you just made yourself out to be the predator. You were obviously desperate enough to continue trolling OKCupid well after you sobered up and realised and you had no legitimate reason for being on there. It's no wonder men always complain about women playing mind games. You managed to reinforce a stereotype that some of us have worked so hard to disassociate ourselves with.

I'll readily admit that if he's anything remotely like how Alyssa described him (which I doubt), I probably wouldn't be interested in him romantically myself. That doesn't mean I don't think he'd be a cool friend to have — the people I hang out with the most are nerds of some kind, but I'm only really sexually attracted to blokey blokes. You know, the manly types that look good without trying too hard and aren't fussed about having a bit of a belly. In any case, everyone has an ego, and crushing someone's modest expectations of themselves is unnecessary, let alone damaging to self-esteem.

That's why I find it so appalling that you laughed when he said he was the world champion of Magic: The Gathering. Why would you do that? Any other person would have been genuinely curious, and I would have been nothing less than excited to learn more about a game I've heard so much about, yet know so little of. It's not easy to be good at something, let alone be the world champion at it.

It really is a shame you forgot to Google him before you had dinner with him. Perhaps then you might have given him the respect that he deserves. I agree that disclosing your marital status and any kids in an online dating profile is mandatory, but calling him a liar for not putting down the fact that he's a world champion at something is unfair. I call that being modest — a highly desirable attribute, and one that you seem to lack.

As you suggested, being so shallow that you couldn't see past his world title led you to make the truth look like fiction. If you walked away from the second date thinking that he was nothing more than "a champion dweeb in hedge funder's clothing", then that's your fault. Did you ever stop to think that maybe he was in hedge funder's clothing because he actually, you know, works for a hedge fund company. I doubt that a guy who's intelligent enough to be in a job like that is so socially retarded that he's unable to make conversation about anything other than Magic: The Gathering. And if he was, I'm sure you wouldn't have hesitated to make a point of it in your slanderous article. Sometimes, guys need to be prodded into speaking about themselves. From what you've written, it's clear that you failed completely at making proper conversation with him.

You not only accuse him of lying in his profile, you also accuse him of "infiltrat[ing]his way into OKCupid dates" with two people you know. Yes, it is strange, which is why I would have gone out of my way to ask him about it rather than make nasty assumptions about him online. You judged him so harshly and publicly without giving concrete reasons as to why we should believe you.

So what can we all learn from Alyssa's rant? She's a narcissist who you would probably not want to date, women can be predators online too, and be assured that her experience is the exception rather than the rule.

To the Magic champ: I'd love to hear your side of the story. Dinner?


Comments

    Thanks for the article Elly. I found Alyssa's piece pretty poor judgement. What gives her the right to publicly humiliate someone like that. Her behavior was pretty poor - both on the date and after.

      Thank you Elly...Its rare that I get so fired up like this, but her cockiness and disregard for other peoples feelings is astounding...and people wonder why guys don't "just ask girls out?" lol what a joke...but good on you Elly for speaking your mind against this irrelevant girl (not woman).

        She reminds me of this scenario (pre-internet)

        - Sorority girl meets and dates handsome guy. During dinner she discovers guy is a gaming geek. Sorority girl dumps handsome nerd, and then publicly embarrasses him.

        Only difference is now the public embarrassment goes beyond the classroom, but extends around the whole world. The person who wrote “Well, you’re a bitch,” had it correct IMHO.

        I think Child is more like it.

      I think Elly's article is a good post, but at the same time I can hardly support this site when it goes and publishes the original article next to it.

      If you don't support what is said, don't publish it. By publishing it you are no better than your US counterparts who post this trolling crap for no other reason then to generate more clicks.

        It goes straight to being published, unfortunately.

        I wouldn't judge that so quick, either. Sometimes the post goes directly to the site. If that's the case, removing it or editing it would make them look worse, like they were trying to hide something.
        The best solution is also the harder to implement and was what they have chosen: To keep the article (nothing to hide, they're facing the mistake) and then make clear they don't share the poster's opinion or they simply "don't like it". That way, they can make sure we get the message and more important, let us voice our opinions.

        So, it is hard, I disliked that piece of crap, too. But deleting or editing it would've been way worse.

      that last sentence contained so much awesomeness I can't even believe it.

      Judging by her picture, Alyssa can't be too picky. JUST SAYIN'.

      See kids, that's what drinking the loneliness away does to you!

      Anyway, I agree, wholeheartedly with your comment. Although it puzzles me to think that Alyssa has such confidence in herself to slate this guy for going on a date with her. I hope she enjoys being internet famous.

    Thanks for the article Elly, a response like this needed to come from Alyssa's peers. I joined OKC a couple weeks ago and I truly hope that Alyssa is the exception rather than the rule.

      Alyssa is the norm on OKC. I had actually had a woman dump me because I would *DARE* to transition career tracks.

        There is no norm for OKC. I'm a weird guy. I met my girl, who is also rather unusual. We've been together over a year now and we plan to marry. All thanks to OKC giving you a very wide array of people to choose from. A crap average isn't indicative of OKC sucking... it's indicative of the population in your area sucking.

    Excellent article, I agree 100%.

    wow alyssa bereznak is everything thats wrong with people. what a narcisisstic wench.

    Original article... I cannot find on Jezebel... Interesting... I wonder if Alyssa has put a lot of people off side? Could be. Seems to be a pretty facile and artless ... Long tweet... for want of a better description. Alyssa is also easy to google and that is what I did. Alyssa hasn't really done much... Might not ever do much... He can be happy that he is or has been a world champion.

    World champ strategy game players get looked upon in a worse light than someone who plays amateur/semi-pro sports in their own time?

    I played Magic in my youth, and one of the things I learned about the professional/high-level competitors was that the majority were what you'd describe as a "people person". If you don't understand people and have no ability to read expressions and think ahead, you won't get anywhere.

    I'd be willing to bet this guy is one of them, especially since his original message was confident and not awkard. Justmy2cents.

    You should rename this to "Alyssa Bereznak just reminded us that she's a soulless harpie"

    I'm sure there's a card for that.

      +1

      I spat my tea on my desk laughing at this comment.

      + 1,

      awesome absolutely awesome

        hahahah god where is the like button here ??

      http://gatherer.wizards.com/Handlers/Image.ashx?multiverseid=373670&type=card

      I think this one fits pretty well.

    Don't think so, original was on gizmodo, and repub'd on jezz from the looks of that.

    This is going around on twitter.
    Amen to your article.

    All the awards, to this girl here.

    Pretty sure this is set up to be trolled, with another article to follow up on the "pack mentality" of nerdlings and dweebsters

    She was/is an intern at Giz US as far as I can tell.

    I can't imagine why she is single - seems like such a catch....

    Plus, who writes a piece for a tech blog slagging off nerds?

      sage wisdom, right there

    Ahaha, awesome. This article is the first result on Alyssa's name in Bing.

      What the heck's a Bing? Is that something that searches Google? :P

    Give elly a priZe!

    I have a confession. I play with toy cars. Have for the past 20+ years. More precisely, they're radio controlled cars. Even more precisely, I race them against other like-minded nerds.

    In addition to playing with toy cars, I've also dabbled in online dating over the years. No, I choose NOT to disclose my nerdy hobby in my online profile. Why on earth would I? The function of an online profile is, whilst still being honest, to talk yourself up!

    Does omitting my penchant for toy cars make me a liar? Of course not! I'm sure Alyssa's profile was carefully crafted to portray her at her best too, with no mention of that ingrown toenail, hideous nose hair problem or affection for eating toilet paper.

    The thing is, people, that is to say, most normal people, find these human idiosyncrasies quite fascinating. Fact is, I'm not remotely hung up on my remote control hobby. And inevitably it comes up in conversation on dates. Just as it did with my current partner, who I met online. She thinks it's quirky and fun and understands that it's just as much about hanging out with my buddies as it is about playing with toy cars.

    When I'm preparing for a big race, we sometimes joke about the omission in my profile. Just like we joke about the omission for my love of the movie Superbad, or her omission of her passion for Spandau Ballet. It's funny, and we laugh about it. We're human, We're all different. And that's fun.

      That's awesome! I always wanted an RC car when I was a kid, but my mother was anti-battery controlled toys. :-( About 10 years ago, I went on a date (match.com) with a guy who had recently quit the US cycling team due to repeated injuries. His roommate was a martial arts instructor, and they held weekly D&D nights. Since I knew a lot of D&D players from my childhood, I didn't find it weird. As for my date with the ex-cycling guy - we ended up at a museum, and he took 2 tiny RC cars out of his jacket pockets. He gave me one and we raced them in an out of the way dusty old part of the museum. It was so much fun, and I thought it was a very thoughtful gesture. We only went out a few more times, as we just didn't have a romantic spark, but I never dumped a guy for being a nerd.

      I don't consider myself a full-on nerd, but my husband (definite non-nerd, resident cool guy) does, and it doesn't bother me at all.

    I like that we're actually getting some acknowledgement from the AU editors about the declining quality of the US articles. That said, rather than a rebuttal, I'd rather see the original simply not posted here.

      Oh, cry me a river. So you're too cool for America, too. Fine. Then just stay off of gizmodo and okcupid and facebook and gawker and, etc. Enjoy your Fairfax content. Oh wait -- that's all lifted from the NY Times and the Guardian. So they let an intern write a piece and it caused furor. Big deal, mate.

        I think he was complaining about Gawker US, not America in general.

        touchy much?

    I appluad you for writing this.

    Reading the other article and sounds like he wasn't even going to talk about M:TG until she mentioned games, sounds to me like he was trying to be interesting and not bore her with his own hobbies.
    He brought it up when it made sense in the conversation, clearly didn't hide the fact, but sounds like he was trying not to make a big deal out of his fame (and fame he certainly does have, hell even I know the name and I only play M:TG a couple of times per year).

    My question to her would be how else he should've brought it up. If you were a big fan of Antiques Roadshow would you really put it up on your public profile?
    You don't want to give off bad first impressions, nothing wrong with putting your best foot forward in what is essentially an interview.

    He should be glad she decided not to persue him further, he deserves better.

    Good on you Elly, you really hit the nail on the head!!!

    Ms. Hart,
    First of all, thank you for this marvelous article. To be quite frank with you, Ms. Bereznak's article had me seriously doubting flying my "nerd" (dweeb) flag so high around women I find attractive. Your words on the other hand give me encouragement to continue to fly that flag loudly and proudly. Consequences be damned. While some women such as yourself may not find it "attractive", I know that at least you (and others like you) don't mind it. (even enjoy it)

    I don't know if I can express how much your re-affirmation of my beliefs means. Thank you again for restoring putting faith back into this "dweeb's" heart that at some point, some woman will find my "nerd-charm" (as an ex recently put it) irresistible.

    -Kyle

      Rest easy, Kyle. There are loads of nerd girls and girls who aren't but are still into nerds. I'm with the 501st (as an independent geek girl), and at least half the young women I hang out with at conventions are there because their boyfriends/husbands got them into it. One of the guys I deeply admire is so amazing to me because of all his accomplishments within the Star Wars world (he's the model for several characters and has his own action figures). Girls who run at the sight of a "nerd flag" are the ones who would have been an absolute bore anyways.

      Kyle, Alyssa is a bad person. Not all of us women are like her. Actually, I met my bf online too, but through a different website. He is just like the said nerd Alyssa was bashing. He is a very normal guy, but he likes to play games like Magic and other "nerdy" games. However, I like that he has his own hobbies, and I'm glad that he enjoys them. It doesn't take away from the fact that we're extremely compatible as a couple. He's the sweetest man on earth, and I love him for it. I'm glad I met him. And for the record, Elly, not all of us who try the online dating thing are desperate. I wasn't. I was simply dissatisfied with the men I was meeting. I wanted something else than what my immediate circle of reality could provide me. And it worked for me. Actually, it worked for both of us. My boyfriend feels the same about this too! So moral of the story, Kyle, you'll find a girl who will love you, nerdy games and all! ;)

    *restoring/putting faith

      Kyle - fly the dweeb flag good and proud - there's a lot of us girls who love nerd - the rest just don't know what they're missing :)

        A LOT of us!!!

          Definitely a lot.

    Great article.. Totally Agree.. I hope he sees this :)

    In the best possible light, that article was a call for dating profiles that read like a CIA dossier on a high value target. I've never been in that scene, but I can't imagine that's what the average user wants...

    Stories like the original one make me so glad that my fiancée and I found each other in high-school and I'm not part of the online dating thing.

    I am 25 and a Lego fan. It is the only hobby that I have. Some people might find that weird, but I enjoy it and it certainly doesn't define who I am.

    My fiancée plays Xbox, and I suck at it.

    My point is that it stupid to think that you can't have an amazing relationship because you don't share 100% of the same interests. Somebody should tell Alyssa Bereznak that.

    Elly's article really needs to be posted on the US Gizmodo site.

    Is that possible?

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