Elliot Rodger will forever be known as the 22-year-old who murdered six people in Santa Barbara on May 23. But Rodger’s extensive digital footprint, as well as his stomach-turning YouTube send-off and 137-page manifesto, suggest that he may have identified himself differently: as an “incel,” or involuntary virgin; as an aspirational, if frustrated, pick-up artist; and as an adherent of the so-called “manosphere” — that corner of the Internet where boys will be boys, girls will be objects, and critics will be “feminists,” “misandrists” or “enemies.”
If you’re not familiar with these terms, you’re not alone: The manosphere and its various components tend to only make mainstream news over tragedies (like this one) and controversies (like one “activist’s” opposition to date-rape seminars on college campuses). But to thousands of men across the Internet — including, apparently, Rodger — they’re home.
Rodger has personally been linked to an account on the pick-up site PUAhate.com,