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August 26, 2015

We talk a lot about "Frame Control", but many people misunderstand the term. I have noticed more and more people using the term generally, to mean something like "standing up for yourself", and more and more people asking about it on askTRP, because the overgeneralized use of the term has confused them as to its actual meaning.

Frame control isn't just conversational dominance. Frame control isn't just winning an argument. In fact, winning an argument without controlling the frame can be a very bad thing.

Frame is the process and context in which you interact with another person. It includes such things as the topic of discussion, the tone and manner of the speech, who is allowed to speak and when, and so.

Therefore, when we say "Frame Control", we do not simply mean standing up for yourself or not backing down. We mean control over the process of the conversation.


  • Lose Frame, Lose Argument
    Larry Summers: There may be some inherent difference in mathematical ability between male and female populations.
    Horde of Angry Feminists: Misogynist!
    Larry Summers: I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry (resigns post).

  • Lose Frame, Win Argument
    MRA Larry Summers: There may be some inherent difference in mathematical ability between male and female populations.
    Horde of Angry Feminists: Misogynist!
    MRA Larry Summers: How dare you call me a misogynist? Here is my track of promoting female employees, donating to women's charities, promoting breast cancer research, etc, etc, etc.
    Horde of Sheepish Feminists: Oops.

  • Control Frame
    TRP Larry Summers: There may be some inherent difference in mathematical ability between male and female populations.
    Horde of Angry Feminists: Misogynist!
    TRP Larry Summers: We're talking about mathematical ability, not your feels about whatever you think my feels are. Do you have anything useful to add to this the discussion of mathematical ability, or are you just going to squawk like a wet chicken?

You see, in the second example, MRA Larry Summers has won a battle, but lost the war, because he has won the battle that his enemy picked for him to fight. The point he was trying to make it forgotten, because the feminists successfully derailed the conversation into a discussion of Larry Summers' feelings and implied moral worth. They have successful avoided the question of whether men and women differ in mathematical ability.

TRP Larry Summers displays frame control. He refuses to be drawn into the discussion that the feminists want to have. He is having the discussion he wants to have.

Without proper frame control, even a dominant conversationalist will lose out in the long run. This is because he can be drawn into discussions he doesn't want to have, and distracted from his own goals in the interaction.

The most critical form of frame control, as we shown in the example, is dealing with the accusation shit test. To directly confront and attempt to refute an accusation, even if wild successful, is a defeat, because you have:

  1. Allowed someone to steer the topic of conversation to something that has no good outcome for you.
  2. Shown that the accusation bothers you, which weakens your image.

In any conversation, the controller of the frame is the one who acts, rather than reacts. Many shit tests are, at their core, an attempt to push you into a reactive mode to see if it can be done.

Some Principles of Good Frame Control:

  • Focus on your goal in the conversation, and focus what you say on that goal.
  • Do not simply react to whatever anyone else says. Consider what direction you want the conversation to take, first.
  • Do not cooperate with an attempt to change the subject unless it serves your goals.
  • Ignore, call out, or laugh at accusations rather than denying or defending against them.
  • Reward cooperation with your frame with active listening and positive reinforcement. Frame control does not mean monopolizing the conversation.
  • Punish attempts to break your frame by ignoring the speaker or calling out the behaviour.
  • Always finish your sentences. Ignore interruptions as if they did not happen. Be loud if necessary.
  • Reward those who tolerate your (deliberate or accidental) interruptions by quickly finishing and then explicitly calling on them to finish their thoughts.
  • Do not attempt to control the frame merely to control the frame. Have a frame in mind, and be only as controlling as you need to be in order to establish that frame.
  • Do not hesitate to leave a conversation if circumstances render the frame uncontrollable. You lose more face by being dominated than you do by retreating to fight another day.

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Post Information
Title Frame
Author Whisper
Upvotes 385
Comments 60
Date August 26, 2015 10:41 PM UTC (6 years ago)
Subreddit /r/TheRedPill
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/TheRedPill/frame.35880
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/TheRedPill/comments/3iix64/frame/
You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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