Dating guru Julien Blanc denies teaching controversial pick-up methods

Self proclaimed 'Dating guru' Julien Blanc. The controversial dating coach, who has been banned from holding seminars in several countries for his physically aggressive "pick-up" methods, says he is the "world's most hated man" but has denied even te
Self proclaimed 'Dating guru' Julien Blanc. The controversial dating coach, who has been banned from holding seminars in several countries for his physically aggressive "pick-up" methods, says he is the "world's most hated man" but has denied even teaching these methods. -- PHOTO: TWITTER

Controversial dating coach Julien Blanc, who has been banned from holding seminars in several countries for his physically aggressive "pick-up" methods, says he is the "world's most hated man" but has denied even teaching these methods.

In his first interview after a global backlash for his teaching of physical aggression and emotional abuse to convince women to have sex, he apologised, and said that the pictures and videos were taken "out of context".

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He was speaking to host Chris Cuomo on CNN. About a photo that looks like he is choking a woman, Blanc said it was a "horrible horrible attempt at humour". He said it was taken out of context "in a way", and when asked to elaborate on that, he said: "I did place my hand around their neck. I did not physically choke them." He admitted to wanting to provoke shock, which he said the photo did, but for "all the wrong reasons".

Blanc was also asked about a "checklist" he allegedly made for picking up women, which was adapted from a checklist on things for women to be careful about. His version has strategies for men, including "intimidation" and "emotional abuse". He said he does not show this checklist in his course, or teach it.

He said he was in fact mocking it, because it was in the "opposite direction" of what he teaches, and he thought it would be funny.

To this question "You think that men meet women and get into meaningful relationships with the tips that you give them?", his answer was: "More than you think."

He said that many of his clients meet their spouses on the programme that he teaches, and he knows this because they email him "all the time," and he even gets invited to weddings.

He described himself as the "world's most hated man". Asked how he thinks he got into such a sticky situation, he said: "By putting a lot of stupid things online."

Several online petitions were started to prevent Blanc from entering their countries. Countries that have banned him include Canada, Japan, Brazil and Australia. A petition started in Singapore by Ms Charis Mah has gathered more than 8,000 supporters in a week, and on Friday, the number was close to hitting its 10,000 target.

jalmsab@sph.com.sg