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FUCK YOU, internet! – Why I decided to build an empire OFFLINE

The internet ain’t what it used to be.

I remember some years ago when my site was banned in China and the Middle East.

So what, I thought? They are the most censorious nations on earth. I live in the West, I’ve nothing to worry about. I just give men advice on travel and dating. What harm was that?

Boy, was I wrong.

The first warning shot came when I was living in New York when an employer fired me because of a horde of radical feminists complained about my content. Helping men “get laid” was grossly sexist and offensive, apparently.

My bad, I shouldn’t have promoted my first book so openly to people, especially to the kind of crazy women who end up in New York.

That was the beginning of cancel culture in America.

Little did I know that masculinity itself was about to become politicized, and during the 2016 election cycle, all hell would reign down.

The 2016 Purge

First, they came for Roosh V, author of several men’s travel guides that I profited off as an affiliate. Paypal banned him and overnight, one of my most reliable (albeit modest) income streams dried up.

The ban came as a result of a series of media attacks against Roosh, his sites, and his followers. Looking for an Irish angle, the mainstream media put me in their crosshairs, prompting me to take legal action against the Sunday World for libel.

SJWs and the PC babies of silicon valley had put the manosphere/red pill movement on their kill list, and suddenly it felt like I had a castle built on sand.

Amazon began banning books, payment services continued shutting down accounts, and social media companies began purging all those upset the status quo.

This is the world we now live in, and the future looks bleak.

Fighting back

Men like me needed to plan for our futures. I needed stability. I needed to diversify… online AND offline.

Real estate, design jobs, crypto, p2p loans, matched betting, ETFs… I began stacking cash in all directions and consumed a ton of books on investing and finance.

But the best returns on your money? 12% on a hot foreign condo is nice, but if you want to make REAL money, you have to build a business.

Back to Basics

So I did what my father did, and my grandfather did before him… and what others have done since the epic of Gilgamesh.

I became an Irish stereotype and sold beer.

Last month, I celebrated my first year since the opening of my first bar/restaurant concept.

While 90% of startups fail in their first year, I expanded rapidly.

The bar was an instant success and soon I attracted investors. This summer, I partnered to open a second location double the size of the first AND acquired a tidy import and distribution company. Like my first venture, we hit the ground spiriting. Now I’ve turned a small investment into a modest empire turning over more than half a million euros a year. Not too shabby.

Combined with the income from my real estate investment and other investments, I can finally give my enemies the middle finger.

Maybe I’m dumb to not focus on the screen game. Offline you have to work harder and you’re less flexible, but I’m at that stage in my life where that doesn’t bother me anymore. In 2019, I still got to travel to awesome locations like Colombia, Nepal and Central Asia. You can get the balance right.

But more importantly, I’ve become anti-fragile, and you know what?
It feels good.

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6 Responses to FUCK YOU, internet! – Why I decided to build an empire OFFLINE

  1. Jim November 25, 2019 at 5:50 pm #

    You were in a “controversial” business on the internet so no wonder it was difficult. It’s a pity just writing about such topics is controversial, but that’s a different issue.

    The benefit to internet businesses is they can be almost infinitely scalable, with high profit margins. The downside, because the cancel culture thing, is there’s huge competition.

    Your brick-and-mortar business will face less competition since it’s just the people on the same street you compete with. It’s also less scalable — to grow revenue, you need to grow employees, and so your margins aren’t amazing. You’re probably spending 33% on labor costs, 33% on product, and 33% on everything else (rent, utilities).

    But that’s fine. You’re having fun doing it, and it makes a decent living for you. Also, you’re _doing it_ not just a keyboard jockey who is all talk and never actually starts a business.

    Watch for the macro-level trends. If a lot of your business is from tourists (it’s Malta after all), then if Malta falls out of favor with tourists, that could affect your business long-term. It looks like tourism arrivals were up 10-15% in 2019, so that bodes well.. but what’s trendy this year may not be in 3 years. Just monitor that trend.

    Good luck, and rock on!

    • Mark Zolo November 27, 2019 at 11:18 am #

      Cheers Jim. I agree internet is still tops. Luckily, most of my trade is expats.

  2. Splooge November 27, 2019 at 4:17 am #

    Honestly I think the reason you got caught in the firestorm with Roosh is how your work is worded. Especially with Roosh but it’s obvious he clockbaits
    Then again that said Krauser shoots his mouth way more And he hasn’t had any repercussions. Tbh I thought he’d be the first to go. But perhaps it’s because he writes about going to Eastern Europe whom have a high HDMI .
    As oppose to going into conservative or developing nations.
    Swoop the world puts nudes up so them and your affiliates could see n end soon.

    But smart move and much success on diversifying your streams.
    Like to see step by step on getting your bar done
    Hope your loan wasn’t too big to get the land and lease
    Congrats on the income hope it’s more then the debt accumulated

    • Mark Zolo November 27, 2019 at 11:20 am #

      Thanks Splooge. Debt is minimal (aside from mortgage for my apartment). I’m not giving up on the online space… but I’m thinking of pivoting.

  3. QBall December 8, 2019 at 9:22 pm #

    Great story, huge congrats lad, can you recommend some investment books

    • Mark Zolo December 17, 2019 at 3:37 pm #

      Think and grow rich, RichDad PoorDad, Money by Tony Robbins, Principals by Ray Dalio, 10X by Gramham Cardone

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