The Evolution of Pickup Artists: From Eric Weber to Roosh V

Reg B

Hatched by Reg B

Sep 04, 2023

4 min read


The Evolution of Pickup Artists: From Eric Weber to Roosh V


Pickup artists, commonly known as PUAs, are individuals who practice seduction techniques to attract and establish relationships with women. While the modern pickup artist movement has gained significant attention in recent years, its history dates back to at least 1970 with the publication of Eric Weber's "How to Pick Up Girls!" In this article, we will explore the evolution of pickup artists, from the early pioneers to the controversial figures of today.

The Origins of Pickup Artistry:

Before the term "pickup artist" was even coined, there were individuals who dabbled in the art of seduction. One notable figure was Albert Ellis, a rational emotive psychotherapist who wrote "The Art of Erotic Seduction" in 1967. Ellis encouraged men to meet women through the "pickup" and laid the groundwork for what would later become the pickup artist community.

The Rise of Ross Jeffries:

In 1991, Ross Jeffries emerged as one of the first prominent pickup artists. Jeffries taught workshops and promoted a collection of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) techniques called "speed seduction." He even published a book titled "How to Get the Women You Desire into Bed," which outlined his techniques. Jeffries played a significant role in popularizing pickup artistry and paved the way for other pickup gurus to follow.

The Birth of the Pickup Artist Community:

While Jeffries was making waves in the pickup artist scene, other individuals were independently establishing themselves in the community. It wasn't until 1994 that a student of Jeffries, Lewis De Payne, founded the newsgroup (ASF), which became a hub for pickup artistry discussions. This newsgroup spawned a network of online forums, email lists, blogs, and websites where seduction techniques could be shared and exchanged.

Competing Methods and Seduction Gurus:

As the pickup artist community grew, different teachers emerged with their unique methods. They became known as "seduction gurus" or simply "gurus" within the community. These gurus had their own philosophies and techniques, often with competing ideas on how to attract women. This diversity within the community allowed for the exchange of various seduction strategies and fostered the growth of the movement.

Mainstream Awareness and Controversy:

The pickup artist community gained greater mainstream awareness with the release of the 1999 film "Magnolia," in which Tom Cruise portrayed a charismatic yet troubled pickup guru inspired by Ross Jeffries. However, it was Neil Strauss's 2005 book, "The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists," that truly brought pickup techniques to a wider audience. The book became a New York Times Bestseller and exposed the inner workings of the pickup artist community.

Seduction Lairs and Online Forums:

Within the pickup artist community, seduction lairs emerged as underground meeting groups for men dedicated to studying the art of obtaining sex. These lairs typically consisted of two elements: an online forum and group meetings. These spaces allowed pickup artists to share their experiences, refine their techniques, and support one another in their pursuit of romantic success.

Controversial Figures and Criticisms:

Not all pickup artists have garnered positive attention. Roosh V, in particular, has been criticized for his views on women and sex, with accusations of rape advocacy and instances of rape depicted in his books. Other pickup artists, such as Julien Blanc, have also faced backlash for their controversial teachings and behaviors. Feminist BDSM writer and activist Clarisse Thorn has criticized the PUA community as sexist and problematic, while also acknowledging that understanding PUA tactics can shed light on broader societal beliefs and patterns of sexual behavior.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Focus on personal growth: Instead of solely relying on pickup techniques, prioritize personal development. Work on building confidence, improving social skills, and becoming the best version of yourself. Authenticity and self-improvement will attract genuine connections.
  • 2. Respect and consent: It is crucial to treat women with respect and prioritize consent in all interactions. Pickup artistry should never be about manipulating or coercing someone into a relationship or sexual encounter. Consent and communication should be at the forefront of any romantic pursuit.
  • 3. Question societal norms: It is essential to critically examine societal expectations and traditional gender roles. Challenging these norms can lead to healthier relationships and a more inclusive approach to dating.


The pickup artist community has evolved significantly since its inception in the 1970s. While it has faced criticisms and controversies, the movement has also spurred discussions on gender roles, consent, and personal growth. By incorporating actionable advice focused on personal development, respect, and challenging societal norms, individuals can navigate the dating world with authenticity and integrity.

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