While the [BDSM] sceneâ€™s mantraâ€”â€œsafe, sane and consensualâ€â€”is heard so often it might as well be translated into needlepoint, violations of these maxims are common. In the last year, hundreds of people have come forward to describe the abuse theyâ€™ve suffered within the scene. The victims are mostly women, and like 50 Shadesâ€™ fictional 22-year-old Anastasia Steele, many are also young, submissive and uncertain about their boundaries.
The BDSM scene can be violent by nature. Physical and psychological power, and the lack thereof, are at the heart of the erotic experience. As a result, sexual assault can be harder to define and harder to prove. But thatâ€™s not to say it doesnâ€™t happen. Indeed, awareness of the problem seems to be growing, and controversies around the issue have been roiling the tight-knit fetish community all year.
Additionally, Rachel mentions the FetLife Alleged Abusers Database Engine (FAADE), and links to my home page, but not to the download page for the app:
Meanwhile, despite FetLifeâ€™s best efforts, alleged abusers are still being publicly identified. A tech-savvy member of the BDSM community named MayMay recently developed an app that puts a yellow square around the profile photo of anyone who has been accused of abuse, along with a description of their alleged misdeeds. The yellow square can only be seen within the app, a free download.
If you’re looking for the app, you can download it from my website here: http://maybemaimed.com/playground/fetlife-alleged-abusers-database-engine/
Further reading that will offer additional context and information on this and related issues:
- The privacy information FetLife doesn’t want you to read
- FetLife is Not Safe for Users
- Help me desimplify: Rape and sex
- The BDSM Scene is an abusive social institution. Let their world burn.
- Never, ever assume you need permission from a dominant person to speak to a submissive person