NCSF on Twitter   Subscribe to the NCSF RSS Feed   NCSF Blog

Media Updates

"Folsom Street Fair 2014: 30 Images from a Day of Kinky Fun"

on Thursday, 25 September 2014. Hits 291

Frontiers LA.com

by Stephan Horbelt

This past Sunday, Sept. 21, the world's largest leather event, the Folsom Street Fair, returned to San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood for its 30th year. Bay Area residents and tourists from around the world converged on a five-block stretch of Folsom Street to celebrate all things counterculture and outside the box—an "only in SF" event, indeed. 

The weather was perfect—slightly overcast and cool—for a street festival, with leather, rubber and fetish enthusiasts (as well as the occasional nudist) eager to present themselves to fellow subculture devotees and the (more than occasional at this point) outside observer. 

In addition to exhibitors selling their kinky wares and booths where festivalgoers could purchase draft beers and cocktails, Folsom Street played host to spanking and flogging booths, boot shining, erotic art demonstrations and performances on various stages by local and big-name acts. 

L.A.-based photographer Dusti Cunningham (site NSFW) captured the experience in the set of images below. If you weren't able to experience the sights of Folsom Street Fair this past weekend, these 30 images are sure to give you a sense of what you missed.

This past Sunday, Sept. 21, the world's largest leather event, the Folsom Street Fair, returned to San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood for its 30th year. Bay Area residents and tourists from around the world converged on a five-block stretch of Folsom Street to celebrate all things counterculture and outside the box—an "only in SF" event, indeed. 

The weather was perfect—slightly overcast and cool—for a street festival, with leather, rubber and fetish enthusiasts (as well as the occasional nudist) eager to present themselves to fellow subculture devotees and the (more than occasional at this point) outside observer. 

In addition to exhibitors selling their kinky wares and booths where festivalgoers could purchase draft beers and cocktails, Folsom Street played host to spanking and flogging booths, boot shining, erotic art demonstrations and performances on various stages by local and big-name acts. 

L.A.-based photographer Dusti Cunningham (site NSFW) captured the experience in the set of images below. If you weren't able to experience the sights of Folsom Street Fair this past weekend, these 30 images are sure to give you a sense of what you missed.  - See more at: http://www.frontiersla.com/frontiers-blog/2014/09/23/folsom-street-fair-2014-30-images-from-a-day-of-kinky-fun#sthash.82zyx7uz.dpuf

"A Rope Mistress, the Rubber Master, Sadomasochist Sisters: Portraits in Kink"

on Wednesday, 24 September 2014. Hits 206

Slate

By Jordan G. Teicher

These photographs contain sexual themes.

Danny Ghitis became interested in the fetish, BDSM, and kink communities for the same reason he became interested in rock climbing: They both inspired a bit of discomfort, but also a bit of curiosity.

In 2011, same-sex marriage had recently been legalized in New York, 50 Shades of Grey was on everyone’s bookshelves, and Ghitis, a “straight, vanilla guy,” realized that he knew very little about sexual and gender identity. He decided to explore.

In his research, he came across FetLife, a “social network for the BDSM and fetish community,” that describes itself as “similar to Facebook and MySpace but run by kinksters like you and me.”

“I thought that looking into a project about it was basically a way to expose myself and confront my own ignorance,” Ghitis said. “That way I’d be able to learn and ask myself important questions about my own identity and really face the challenges I think we all should at one point or another face.”

He made a profile on the site, identified himself as a photographer looking for people to photograph, and slowly started making connections. Ghitis, who uses photography as “an excuse to meet people” he otherwise wouldn’t, started seeing some things he’d never seen before. His goal, he said, was to “put myself in front of people I was unfamiliar with and find common ground between us.”

His ongoing series, “The Fetlife,” takes us into the homes of kinksters, submissives, cosplay enthusiasts, and other “sexual deviants” all over New York City. And while the photographs certainly highlight the unique identities of his subjects, Ghitis said his intent is to familiarize, not exoticize. ...

International Media Update: "'Gimp Man of Essex' aiming to spark debate while fundraising"

on Sunday, 21 September 2014. Hits 249

BBC News

A rubber fetishist who raises money by going out in public in a bondage suit said he hoped his efforts would start a debate on stereotypes.

'The Gimp Man of Essex' gives £1 to Colchester Mind every time someone posts a photo with him to his Facebook page, which has more than 2,000 likes.

He said most people he met on the streets were friendly, but others made assumptions that he was "a paedophile or a pervert".

So far he has raised £375 for charity.

A bondage suit, or "gimp suit", is usually made from PVC, leather or rubber, and is used in bondage, discipline, domination, submission, sadism and masochism (BDSM).

"When I first starting going out in my suit, someone suggested I could make a charity thing out of it," he said. "I could go round and do some good.

"People call me a legend, but I only donate a few hundred quid and walk round looking a fool."

James McQuiggan, the chief executive of Colchester Mind, said the charity was thankful for Gimp Man's support and donations.

'Adult enough'

Gimp Man, whose wife and children are unaware of his alter ego, said he does not go out during school holidays or at weekends.

"Most people are very welcoming when I tell them what it's all about," he said. "I don't go round to scare the life out of people.

"I've been called a nutter before, but I don't react to comments like that."

Some social media users have questioned his authenticity and motives, but Gimp Man, who started taking to the streets in June 2013, said there was "no ulterior motive". ...

"Continuing Education for the Kinky (and Curious)"

on Friday, 19 September 2014. Hits 258

Mission Local

By Daniel Hirsch

 

Danarama is a speech coach, of sorts. Here’s a sample piece of advice he gives his students:

“If you can practice every sentence so that your voice goes down, you’ll sound much more dominant, that has a very powerful effect on the person you’re playing with,” says Danarama.

When working with a scene partner, Danarama likes to put the onus on them to fill in the details. One of his favorite lines to motivate improvisation: “Give me three reasons why you deserved to be spanked.”

Danarama is not an improv coach nor speech pathologist. He’s a professional dominant, instructor, and director of BDSM porn purveyor Kink.com’s new educational wing, Kink University. To add to the roster of Folsom Street Fair festivities this weekend, Kink and its academics are hosting BondCon, a four day conferences for the BDSM community and its multifarious interests.

BondCon features 24 different workshops for the kinky and “kink curious.” The workshops, geared towards beginners and the advanced, include practicums and lectures, live demos and seminars, ropes, electrodes, whips, and even balloons.

“We have a class on balloon bondage which is very lighthearted,” said Kink spokesperson Mike Stabile. “It’s probably less intense for beginners than our workshop on grappling and take downs for BDSM.”

Many of the classes include instruction for specific techniques one might use in a BDSM “scene,” or encounter. There’s the basics like “Spanking 101” to the highly technical such as “Beauty in Rope: Weaving Diamond Ties.” Classes also delve into aspects of the Kink lifestyle like “Coming out Kinky,” “Threesome Tips,” and “More Than Two: A Practical Guide to Ethical Polyamory.”

The workshops will feature a few luminaries from the world of kink, including sex educator and author Midori and Takeshi Nagaike, one of forefathers of shibari, a highly stylized form of rope bondage from Japan.

“We just thought it would be a nice thing to offer, because so many people are coming to San Francisco just for Folsom Street,” said Danarama who is teaching a workshop on rough sex and one called “How to Talk Like a Top.”

“It’s the best time to have an open house of the Armory,” Danarama added, noting that in addition to the workshops BondCon will feature frequent tours of the Armory as well as parties in the famed moorish castle’s basement studios. Which, as Stabile notes will not be leaving the Mission for Nevada any time soon as we reported it might in April, the “condom law” AB 1576 has since stalled in the California Senate. Though Stabile says ominously: “we know there will be another one next year.”

For those who can’t make it to BondCon, there’s always the internet to learn from, and not just the online videos Kink is already well known for. Besides providing frequent live workshops, part of Kink University’s mission is to host a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course). Since it launched six weeks, Kink University’s online curriculum offers a suite of in-depth instructional videos with step-by-step photo guides for the more technical skill sets. ...

"A Place to Play"

on Friday, 19 September 2014. Hits 236

Metroland

by Evie

 

Tea has a different taste when served to you by a slave, but I sipped on it anyway. I didn’t want to be rude. I never got the name of this slave, a woman maybe around my age with long curly hair, who was there in La Domaine Esemar to serve her masters, Mistress Couple and Master R. She brought me tea, water, and toast at the request of her masters. I’d entered an entirely different world that existed only a short drive away, seated off a dirt road in the woods of Rensselaer County.

Mistress Couple, who had striking red lips, a black leather dress, and tall black laced boots, invited me into her home and graciously agreed to tell me anything I wanted to know about the BDSM (bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism) lifestyle. Most intriguing to me was her slave, who spent most of the time seated on the floor, her head resting on the arm of the chair that Master R was sitting in. Later, I was shown proper slave posture, which is the physical representation of their submission. This requires the chin up, eyes down, a straight back, palms close to their sex, and the legs open. I also learned that underneath this slave’s robe was bonding rope and a vibrator, as they like her to be aroused as much as possible. However, she isn’t allowed to orgasm until given permission; if she does, she will be sent home.

Master R and Mistress Couple refer to couples who aren’t open to BDSM as “vanilla.” These are people who are satisfied with ordinary, conventional sex. And don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with that. If you’re satisfied, great. If not, perhaps you should look into other options. Go to a sex shop, maybe. Look at porn. Try something. Anything. We all deserve great sex.

If you’re looking into BDSM, La Domaine Esemar sounds like the place to go, and easy to find. By simply typing “BDSM training” into Google, you can find La Domaine Esemar, and many people are. The house gets national attention. You can also find their ad in this paper. They are discreet, but they aren’t hidden.

Different services cost various amounts, which will be explained to you once Mistress Couple has decided you’re fit to visit La Domaine Esemar. Mistress Couple and Master R assist couples in many different situations. Some are in distress, while others are simply looking to add a little spice to their relationship. They promise to at least consider all requests.

If you think you already know about BDSM because you’ve read Fifty Shades of Grey, think again, because let me tell you—it doesn’t even scratch the surface. However, the book did spark an interest in BDSM, and according to CBS News, certain products like bondage tape have seen a striking 1,500-percent increase in purchases since the release of the E.L. James novel. But there’s much more to BDSM than tape and ropes. In fact, that almost seems boring now that I’ve seen the dungeon of La Domaine Esemar. From wall to wall, the dungeon is covered with ball gags, suspension tables, harnesses, belts, collars, hoods, cock rings, outfits, wigs, restraints, rope, feathers, dildos, floggers, and dozens of other things I was too scared to ask about, but I think you get the idea. A house rule in La Domaine Esemar is that if you ask what something is, it will be used on you. Lucky (or maybe unlucky) for me, they suspended this rule during my visit.

Master R says Mistress Couple has the hardest job in the entire sex world. While her main responsibility is running the house, her role is complex. She’s in charge of the slaves, and there can be anywhere from eight to 10 at any given time. They come once or twice a week, or as much as they can. They are there to learn about their submission and their sexuality, work out personal issues, or just simply to experience what it means to be spanked or tied up. Even if they come with casual intentions, Mistress Couple says, they often find themselves diving into deep psychological issues. She says the house allows you to shed your outside persona and discover more about your true self. You can strip away personal issues and “find who you are at your true core,” she says. ...

"Spanking Is Great for Sex"

on Thursday, 18 September 2014. Hits 257

Slate

By Jillian Keenan

Once again, I’ve been accused of pedophilia. Well, to be technical, my sexual identity was called “somewhat pedophilic.” But we’re talking about one of the most loathsome things a person can be accused of, so why split hairs? I’m also regularly told that my sexuality is “repulsive,” “damaged,” and “abusive.” But all of those feel like Valentines compared with “pedophilic.”

People say this to me so often because I’m kinky, and I’ve written about it. I have a spanking fetish. In my case, that means I like to be spanked, usually with a hand, belt, hairbrush, wooden spoon, switch, or paddle. It sexually gratifies me. I’ve had submissive fantasies for as long as I can remember, and it’s part of my identity. I consider my kink to be my sexual orientation.

To be clear—because apparently I have to be—I am an adult. My husband, who is not kinky, is an adult. My first boyfriend (the only other sexual partner I’ve had) was an adult, too. Everyone is an adult. Everyone consents.

So I have a question: If it’s “somewhat pedophilic” when my adult husband consensually spanks me in a simulated “punishment,” what should we call it when parents do the same physical thing to actual children in an actual punishment?

I realize that many well-meaning parents will disagree with me, but spanking kids is gross. There are a lot of reasons why—it’s counterproductive and ineffective, for starters—but there’s another reason that nobody talks about. Butts are sexual. That’s why the area is one of the few “private” parts that, along with breasts and genitals, we feel the need to cover with a swimsuit. If a parent saw a teacher patting a child’s shoulder, it’d be no big deal. But if a parent saw a teacher patting a child’s butt, she would (rightly) be very alarmed.

Spanking is a sex act. It has been for a very long time—probably even longer than it’s been a parenting choice. A fresco at the Etruscan Tomb of the Whipping, which dates back to approximately 490 B.C., depicts an erotic spanking. In Francum, a 1599 epigram by John Davies, includes one of the most explicit descriptions of sexual masochism in Renaissance poetry. In Victorian England—well, there are way too many examples to list them all, so suffice it to say that spanking was a constant focus of Victorian erotica.

And butts aren’t just culturally sexualized; they’re biologically sexual, too. Nerve tracts that pass through the lower spine carry sensory information to and from both the butt and genitals. Some scientists speculate that these nerves can stimulate one region when the other is provoked. There’s also a blood vessel in the pelvic region called the common iliac artery. When blood rushes to a child’s butt—because, say, you’re spanking him—blood rushes down that artery. But the artery splits. Some of it directs blood to the genitals. So when you cause blood to rush to a child’s butt, you’re also causing it to rush to his or her other sex organs. The other time this kind of genital blood engorgement happens is during erection or arousal. ...

"Your “weird” turn-ons aren’t as strange as you think"

on Wednesday, 17 September 2014. Hits 223

Salon

 

I figuratively rubbed my hands together when I saw that Jezebel was soliciting readers’ “weirdest turn ons.” Snarky, no-shit-taking feminists revealing their deepest darkest fantasies! This should be awesome, I thought.

So far, the submissions include quirky things like fake German accents, priest collars, fresh tobacco, alcoholic comedians and “hyperarticulate political shop talk.” One woman copped to really liking her boyfriend’s hands. Another admitted to rape fantasies — dun, dun, dun — after tremendous encouragement from fellow commenters. [Insert appropriate boredom GIF.]

This all had me feeling really jaded. I was recently commissioned to write about the strangest online porn, which resulted in me watching videos of an elderly woman double-penetrated by her own dentures and an Indian doctor extracting blackheads while cooing to viewers, “You want to sit on it?” Now that stuff is weird.

Or is it?

What defines “weird” in the realm of sexual fantasy, anyway? Is it marginality? If so, the availability of “niche” porn suggests that even be-dentured titillation isn’t that weird. No, it may not be a top search term on YouPorn.com, but it has enough of an audience to exist as a sub-genre. There are entire sites devoted to fantasies about everything from cannibalism to incest. To the Jezebel poster into priest collars: Clergy porn is definitely a thing. In fact, anything and everything is a thing in porn. That’s the infamous Rule 34 of the Internet: “If it exists, there is porn of it. No exceptions.”

There is plenty to be said about the negative impact of pervasive online porn, but one positive effect is that it demystifies fantasy. Should you care to feel less alone in your kink –whether it’s tickling or CGI-monster sex, or a combination of both — you can with just a couple of clicks. Looking for a convention for furries? That exists. A meet-up for diaper fetishists? Yep. A dating site for dungeon lovers? Totally. You’re only alone in your kink if you want to be. It’s a beautiful thing!

Then again, demystifying fantasy can be a bad thing. What are our fantasies without taboo? We all want to be special little snowflakes — but when it comes to sex, we don’t want to be too, too special. Our own sexual idiosyncrasies are precious and scary and prized (in the same way that the minutiae of our own dreams is endlessly fascinating but usually leaves others bored out of their minds). ...

"Their Kinky College Romance Ended Badly. So Did the School's Sexual-Assault Investigation"

on Wednesday, 17 September 2014. Hits 493

Westword


When Keifer Johnson headed back to school after last year's summer break, he had reason to believe that the truly awesome part of his college experience was still to come. He was a nineteen-year-old sophomore at Western State Colorado University in Gunnison, a Kerouac-spouting English major and a rising star on WSCU's highly regarded track team. He planned to train and run like hell, read stacks of books, write poetry and have fun.

The first clue that his life on campus was about to undergo a profound change came in a terse e-mail from an English professor. The note said that he would no longer be allowed to serve as a teaching assistant for a freshman writing course, a course for which he'd been a TA the previous semester. The professor urged him to contact Gary Pierson, the university's dean of students, if he had any questions about the decision.

Baffled, Johnson made an appointment and went to see Pierson. The dean told him that he was in possession of a letter that Johnson had sent to a girl who'd been in that writing class. Pierson wouldn't let him see the letter, but he let Johnson know that he found its content to be inappropriate and even disturbing.

Come home prepared, I will devour you.... Expect pain. Expect pleasure. Expect both; they slide hand in hand too easily. Welcome to the jungle, baby. There will be fun and games.


Johnson acknowledged that he knew the girl. They had flirted a bit over the course of the semester, then hooked up during finals week. The relationship had quickly caught fire, the two of them engaging in some bondage-themed role-playing patterned after E.L. James's best-selling S&M romance, Fifty Shades of Grey. Johnson had written the eleven-page letter, a graphic and purplish work in the Jamesian mode, for his lover to read while she was in rehab in another state in June, trying to get clear of her drug and alcohol problems.

I sink my jaw frenzied, wolfing your essence, as I begin to tighten and pound away the calamity of you, the impossibility of you. I destroy myself into you, as I howl your name, as I rupture release profoundly deep within you. I explode myself into you, as we scrape transcendence, as your desperate failing body floods over me. Breathless, I look into you, into the essence [of] you.... The beauty of violence. Holding you there, unmoving, silence shackling the air, I gaze into you, you into me.


Johnson had broken up with the girl -- known here simply as Emily -- at the end of July. Now, barely three weeks later, here was Pierson, questioning him at length about the letter and the relationship. Johnson did his best to explain that the savage sex play described in the letter was pure fantasy, but he wondered why the dean was so interested in a freshman pas de deux that had played out over the summer, far away from campus.

"His questions were strictly about my relationship with her and my personal sex life," Johnson says. "It was definitely a condemning tone. I said, 'While this relationship may seem unsettling to you, it was entirely consensual.' I was frank and forthcoming. I had no reason not to be. I thought I would explain myself and that would be the end of it."

But the meeting with the dean was only the beginning of Johnson's journey through Western State's complicated process of investigating possible sexual misconduct involving its students -- a process that Johnson found infuriating and humiliating, as well as panic-inducing. A few days later he was summoned to the office of Chris Luekenga, the associate vice-president for student affairs, to respond to charges that he had violated policies outlined in the student handbook.

Two of the infractions -- accidentally pulling out Emily's meal card instead of his own in a campus cafeteria, and a "breaking and entering" charge for slipping through an open window into a dorm with other students to check out who was occupying the rooms they'd had the previous semester -- were relatively minor. The third, however, was more ambiguous. Johnson was being accused of "inappropriate behavior" toward another student, apparently based on the letter he'd written Emily.

Once again, Johnson fielded questions about his relationship with the girl and the wilder passages of his letter. Luekenga told him that he'd received a complaint from an "outside party" about Johnson's conduct but refused to provide more specifics. "He said, 'Tell me why you should stay here as a Western State student,'" Johnson recalls.

The meeting turned into a disciplinary hearing, with Johnson found guilty on all counts. He was suspended from the track team for several days while Luekenga pondered what other sanctions to impose. A letter from Luekenga outlined his punishment: 48 hours of community service, a letter of apology to the dining-hall staff for the meal-card incident, and four hours of "counseling sessions that will address your decision-making skills and thought processes." Johnson was also placed on "judicial probation," which meant that he could be suspended from school if he committed any additional infractions.


Johnson didn't entirely agree with the finding; he didn't see anything wrong with the letter to Emily, and he would later learn that there was nothing in the student handbook prohibiting possession of another student's meal card. But he had screwed up by going into the dorm without permission and figured he would just take his medicine. ...

Latest Reader Comments

  • As is true with ANY group of human beings, there will always be individuals who take advantage of a given situation. However,...

    Mistress Black Diamond

    30. April, 2015 |

  • I followed the link to read the full article. As expected in that sort of venue the ideal of BDSM is being promoted, not the reality. I...

    TammyJo Eckhart, PhD

    30. April, 2015 |

  • For many years we have tolerated businesses posing as churches, so why not lifestyle groups? Alternative lifestyle members share a common...

    Bob

    29. April, 2015 |

  • Feminists and christian groups push narratives which become 'fact' (see definition of 'Woozle effect ). These are ideologically driven...

    Elle

    09. April, 2015 |

  • Fetlife works very hard to keep members safe. They also work to protect everyone's freedoms. Criminal accusations should be made to local...

    Daisie

    23. March, 2015 |

  • Simple and brilliant. I will be using this in all of my Human Sexuality classes.

    Callista Lee

    11. March, 2015 |