Who Is Andrew Tate: A Guide For Adults And Caregivers

What adults need to know about Tate, how and why youth are attracted to his messaging, and how to address young people in your life who are influenced by him.

Hazel Woodrow
Canadian Anti-Hate Network

Andrew Tate has made waves in the media over the last six months due to his social media deplatforming and subsequent arrest and detainment in Romania for alleged sex trafficking. A long-time social media influencer and one-time sports star, Tate has built an audience of young men and boys across the world. In our work listening to parents and school professionals, we’ve observed a troubling increase in interest in Tate among school-aged boys. 

Here’s what caring adults and school professionals need to know about Tate, how and why youth are attracted to his messaging, and how to address young people in your life who are influenced by him. 


Andrew Tate rose to prominence as a successful kickboxer in the 2000s and early 2010s, and was at one point a world champion in the sport. In 2015, he was investigated for sexual assault and physical abuse of women by British police. VICE News reported earlier this year that this investigation is the reason he was kicked off the TV show Big Brother (UK) after only five days. VICE also reported that police did not “pass their investigation to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) – whose job involves assessing whether there is a realistic prospect of conviction” until 2019. The CPS declined to prosecute. 

By this time, Tate had been living in Romania for two years. Various media outlets have reported that he said in a since-deleted YouTube video that the reason he moved to Romania was because the police there were less likely to press sexual assault charges, adding “I’m not a rapist but I like the idea of just being able to do what I want.”

Make a donation

However, this assumption about his ability to “do what I want” ended up failing to materialize, as he was arrested by Romanian police in late December on human trafficking and rape charges. The Romanian Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism  (DIICOT) believes that Tate, his brother, and two others, created an international crime group, tricked women into moving to their compound by making them believe they were in real romantic relationships. It’s alleged that Tate and his co-conspirators then coerced the victims under mental and physical threats and violence into producing pornography, from which Tate and his co-conspirators reaped the majority of the profits. 

Tate is part of the manosphere, which the Institute for Strategic Dialogue defines as “an umbrella term that refers to a number of interconnected misogynistic communities. It encompasses multiple types and severities of misogyny – from broader male supremacist discourse to men’s rights activism (MRA) and ‘involuntary celibates’ (incels).” 


How Big Is Andrew Tate’s Influence?


Meta, TikTok, and Google all banned Andrew Tate in August 2022. 

Meta (parent company of Facebook and Instagram) considers him to be a “Dangerous Individual” and banned him under that policy. Before his account was removed, Tate had 4.7 million followers on Instagram.

YouTube, owned by Google, banned multiple Tate-associated channels, which had over a million followers between them.

TikTok banned Tate’s account, but his content remains pervasive across the platform. As of this article, videos with the #AndrewTate hashtag have been viewed 22.6 billion times.. Insider argued in August 2022 (when the same tag only had 13 billion views) that TikTok’s banning of Tate’s account “didn't address the primary source of Tate-related content on the platform — the network of popular Tate fanpages spreading his clips and garnering millions of views that helped catapult him into ubiquity this year.” 

Furthermore, Romanian prosecutors allege that Tate’s human trafficking operation involved his accomplices creating and controlling TikTok accounts for his victims, as a means of driving viewers to the subscription website OnlyFans, where the pornographic content was hosted. 

Tate was originally banned from Twitter in 2017, after he tweeted that women who have been sexually assaulted “bear some responsibility” for being attacked. He had just under forty thousand followers at the time, according to social media analytics site Social Blade. Between 2017 and 2022, he created at least two more new accounts in an attempt to evade the ban. Twitter even verified one of these accounts, “suggesting that Twitter was completely aware of Mr Tate’s identity when he created the new account and broke the social media site’s rules” according to the Independent. As it has done with numerous other far-right and white supremacist accounts, Elon Musk’s Twitter reinstated Tate in November 2022. He has gained nearly 2.8 million followers in the last two months, and currently has 4.8 million followers on the platform.

Outside of these social media entities, Tate exerts influence through another platform — his collection of hateful, conspiracy theory-ridden self help courses, Hustlers University, which could be making over $8 million a month, based on its claimed subscribership of 168,000 people, and monthly fees of $49.99 USD. According to the Guardian, “Members, including boys as young as 13, are told they can earn up to £10,000 a month through lessons on crypto investing, drop shipping and by recruiting others to Hustler’s University, earning 48% commission for each person they refer.” Journalists with Buzzfeed News, who enrolled in August 2022 for a story, reported that misogynistic and anti-2SLGBTQ+ sentiments are present throughout the material. 

Despite all this, we want to echo Vox’s assessment: “Tate isn’t some kind of singular genius, and we should refrain from treating him as such.”


Why Are Young People Interested In Andrew Tate?


Andrew Tate is worth tens to hundreds of millions of dollars, and lives a hyper-glamorous lifestyle complete with all the aspirational accoutrements of wild success a boy or young man could imagine — fast and outrageously expensive cars, beautiful women, entrepreneurial achievements, and social media virality. These factors, in the eyes of Tate and his audience, are what make him a “high value man” — which according to CNN, “they define as wealthy, confident, influential, sexually dominant and entitled to subservience from women.”

Under this model, it’s not difficult to understand how much more attractive Tate is to boys and men, compared to an ageing university professor like Jordan Peterson.

In addition to being drawn to his ostentatious lifestyle, Tate offers boys and young men the same things all hate-promoting figures do — affirmation of their grievances, and simple, self-righteous explanations and solutions for complex problems. It is also important to understand the appeal of his recent conversion to Islam for Muslim boys and young men.

Jump to: 

How Can I Talk to My Kids About Andrew Tate?


Affirmation Of Their Grievances


A key way that Tate is able to draw in boys and young men is by validating their feelings of alienation, loneliness, and confusion. Validation is a key tool for rapport building, and on its own, is not at all a problematic way to engage an audience. 

One of Tate’s most infamous quotations is “I believe that feeling depressed is real. I don’t believe that depression as a clinical disease is real,” followed up by, “I can’t become clinically depressed because I don’t believe in it.” 

While on the surface, this statement may appear invalidating of the experience of depression, it can also be interpreted as a simple “mind over matter” framing of the issue, which misguided young people may appreciate as a way to feel more in control of themselves at a time in their lives — teenagehood — that this is both developmentally normal and health. It is important to note that Tate is far from the only social media influencer communicating this messaging to young people. 


Simple Explanations And Solutions For Complex Problems


The problem with Tate’s affirmation of boys and young men’s grievances, is that the explanation for those grievances, that he provides as follow up, is inaccurate and inherently misogynistic. 

Tim Squirrel, the Head of Communications and Editorial at the Institute for Strategic Dialogue, describes Tate’s ideology as “a mix of red pill culture and hustle culture. It’s kind of a resurgence of early 2010s men’s rights activist culture, which you would see on Reddit, mixed with a filtered through the lens of 2020s Instagram hustle culture, rise and grind, Sigma grindset stuff.”

Men’s rights activists are a subset of the manosphere. They believe that feminism has “gone too far” and created a society where cisgender men — not women, trans, and non-binary people — are systematically oppressed, and in need of a rights-based movement. The MRA movement is full of misinformation about issues like sexual assault and custody disputes. While patriarchy absolutely does harm men, and there are real issues men face that deserve attention, such as the stigmatization of men’s mental health, MRAs instead turn their ire against the movement against patriarchy, feminism; and often scapegoat women in general for their grievances. 

While many commentators have focused on Tate’s similarity to MRAs and other manosphere figures, it is important to understand that the hustle culture mentality — characterized by the belief that prioritizing work over all other aspects of your life, is the key to guaranteed success — is just as fundamental to understanding Tate’s prescription for young men. As is the idolization of the “sigma male,” essentially “self-sufficient loners; they attract extremely good-looking women but aren't interested in them.”

Tate’s explanation for young men’s grievances lies in this mix of the scapegoating and aggrieved entitlement of the 2010s MRA culture, the relentless toxic positivity of 2020s hustle culture, and the hyper-individualist “near-fundamentalist approach to self-improvement” of the “sigma mindset.” It is an explanation that simultaneously projects outward, scapegoating girls and women, immigrants, and other marginalized groups; while assuring his audience that all is not lost, and with his help (at a cost, of course), they can overcome the obstacles placed in their path and succeed as he has. 


A Religious Role Model


As numerous other Muslims have written, Tate’s increased appeal to Muslim boys and young men following his conversion to Islam, is seriously concerning. Rasha Al Aqeedi, for Newlines Magazine, argued that Tate’s conversion indicated “a cross-cultural appeal that makes him stand out from others.” She also pointed out that while Tate’s lifestyle epitomizes the excesses and immorality preached against by many Muslim leaders, the same leaders have swept the behaviour aside as the foibles of a new Muslim, or else entirely ignored it altogether. 

Conversations Al Aqeedi had with numerous young male followers of Tate revealed:

One of many overlapping ideas between Tate’s Muslim supporters and the far-right movements in the West: how they define depravity. The threat is not nonmarital sex and adultery (when committed by a man), nor is overindulgence in earthly pleasures the source of the decay in civilization. Rather, the threat is the new wave of feminism and liberalism that influences the kind of women who these groups would rather keep in traditional gender roles in order to uphold the traditional, patriarchal order — which permits a man to indulge in whatever pleasures he desires, while expecting chastity and submission from the women in their direct circles.

High profile far-right fans of Tate in the West, like Tucker Carlson and Paul Joseph Watson, appear to have largely ignored his conversion. 


How Would I Know If A Young Person In My Life Is Influenced By Andrew Tate?


Teachers, parents, guardians, and other supportive adults all over the world have been reporting that the youth in their care are demonstrating signs of being drawn into Andrew Tate’s sphere of influence. Here are some of the indicators they have identified:


Aspirational: Andrew Tate As An "Alpha Male" And The “Epitome Of Masculine Energy”


One teacher interviewed by Insider about their experiences with Tate’s impact on their students said “They talk about alphas in sixth grade now.” Classifying men as Alphas, Betas, and Omegas according to their sexual prowess and perceived success is not a new feature of the manosphere, but it is one that Tate seems to have brought to a younger demographic. Furthermore, while you may be aware of incels using it to refer resentfully to men who are able to find sexual partners, note that followers of Tate will be using it aspirationally

The culturally appropriative New Age notions of “divine masculine and feminine energy” have been sweeping through TikTok for over a year now. These ideas are binary and gender essentialist (they suggest that there are traits that are inherently masculine/found in men vs. inherently feminine/found in women) and are harmful to all genders — as Laura Pritcher wrote for VICE, they are “reinforcing gender roles and purity culture rhetoric online.” When Tate’s followers praise him for being the “epitome of masculine energy,” as one teacher reported to Insider they are saying that the way Tate behaves is inherent to masculinity, and that masculinity is defined by Tate. 


Dismissive: “You Don’t Even Have A Bugatti” 


As we discussed above, one of the things that sets Tate apart from other manosphere influencers is his extreme wealth. This has led to one of his catchphrases, “What colour is your Bugatti?” being used by his young male followers to refer to their admiration of his wealth. The multi-million dollar sports car is also invoked by Tate and his followers (the vast majority of whom, of course, do not own Bugattis) to dismiss criticism of Tate, as anyone without his obscene wealth is considered to be ineligible to comment negatively about him — for example, “You don’t even have a Bugatti” or “Tell me you don't have a Bugatti without telling me you don't have a Bugatti.” 


Dog Whistles: The “Power Up” Hand Sign And “The Matrix”


Source: Rumble


As the Institute for Strategic Dialogue has reported, “Teachers have noticed boys performing a gesture that Tate has reportedly appropriated from the yogic practice of mudras. Tate has likened it to a ‘power-up’ that his late father, a chess master, used to do before matches.”

The hand sign has become a convenient and subtle signal for followers of Tate to use to signal their admiration of him, without raising the red flags that doing so openly would elicit. It also functions to establish admiring Tate as a matter of in-group and out-group — those who understand the gesture, and those who do not. 

A dog whistle is a coded or obscure references in order to signal meaning to fellow travellers and like-minded believers while slipping into mainstream discourse undetected.

In addition to the dogwhistle nature of the gesture, Tate has also taken to blaming his arrest, and perceived persecution, on “the Matrix.” His conception of “the Matrix” is fairly similar to the contemporary conspiracy theory understanding of the term — as reported by the Independent, he has previously defined “the Matrix” as “the systems which are being created by society that are deliberately designed to enslave.” 

Tate’s invocation of “the Matrix” is an invocation of conspiratorial thinking, which is a serious concern. We recommend checking out our article about conspiracy theory belief in youth to learn more.


How Can I Talk to My Kids About Andrew Tate?


Here are some suggestions for caring adults to start a conversation with the youth in their care about Andrew Tate:

  • Set yourself and your kids up for success by trying to have this conversation when both of you are already feeling well, mentally and physically, and when you have time to not rush through it. 
    • Trying to have tough conversations like this, when we are feeling hungry or overtired, or frustrated by other things, often just sets us up for conflict, rather than solid communication.
  • Start the conversation by assuring your kids that there are no wrong answers, and they won’t be in trouble for what they tell you. Tell them that you want to talk to them because you are worried that they may be hearing or seeing things that are confusing or upsetting, and you want them, and their classmates and friends, to feel safe and comfortable.
  • Ask if they have heard of Andrew Tate, and what they have heard. 
    • You want to start the conversation by getting a baseline of what understanding your kids are entering with.
  • Ask if other kids in their class/friend group talk about him — if they do, what do they say? Do they like him? Dislike him?
  • Ask where they learn what they know about Andrew Tate? Is it from watching his videos? Where are they watching his videos? Is it from people at school or in their social circle?
    • Take care not to ask these questions in an interrogating way. 
  • Ask what they think he stands for? Why do they think he is famous?
    • Some kids may provide answers like “he’s a kickboxer” or “he was on TV.” If they omit any responses referring to his social media influencer status, you may want to ask if they have heard of him in that way. You can also follow up by asking if they know why he has been arrested.
  • Ask how they feel and think about Andrew Tate. Do they like him? Dislike him? What kinds of things does he say that they like? What kinds of things does he say that they don’t like?


  • These are just suggestions. If it feels too big to dive into this entire conversation at once, it’s completely okay to take it one step at a time. 
  • Sometimes it is easier for kids to talk about a subject by talking about what other people think of it. This lets them gauge your reaction to different positions, so it is important to have a measured response not only to what your kids believe and feel, but also to what they say other kids believe and feel. 
  • This conversation can be an opportunity to talk about how there are people who do really impressive things, who also do and say really terrible things. If it feels appropriate, you can give examples of people you have looked up to who have gone on to say and do things that made you stop respecting them. You can talk about how you replaced those role models. 
  • A lot of boys and young men report being drawn to Tate’s positions on loneliness and depression. Furthermore, many people, including youth, are drawn to hate movements because they provide simplified explanations for an increasingly complex world. Unfortunately, not only are these explanations inaccurate, they incite hate against marginalized people by using them as scapegoats. If your kids respond to questions about what they like about Andrew Tate, by saying he makes them feel good about themselves, or he helps them understand how the world works, or he explains how to get girls to like them — consider this a cue to look into how you and/or other caring adults can fill those roles, or help them find alternative role models to fill those roles.

Make a donation