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It all started with this thread on the Fetlife group “Campaign for Real Doms” and the thread “Are We a Community?”. If you have a Fetlife account you can find the original thread HERE.
X_Pan_x, a Dominant from England had this to say:
“There is no community – except in semantic terms. If you look at it, BDSM is no different from any other group of hobbyists or a collection of fandom – the same small fish trying to be big fish, the same people trying to either engrandise themselves for either kudos or monetary gain (nods @Moist – good point well made).What is interesting, and I’ve only recently come to realise this, is that the people who shout the loudest about community, the ones who insist there is one, and that we should all pull together and look after each other are nearly always the same people who want to sell us stuff, or who want us to go to their events so that we can spend our money or who want to bathe in the reflected glory of their own ego. They want you to visit their website, they want to pay the cover price of their play party, they want to get you to buy their products.I am hereby renaming the BDSM Community the BDSM Capitalism.
That’s what really fucks up things. People pushing for Community so that they can commodify our sex lives. Once they perceive that you are going to cost them either ephemeral kudos/standing or worse actual schekles, then the sense of community around you will dissipate quicker than a fart in a wind tunnel.”
So here is my two cents on the above quote from x_pan_x:
I completely agree with Pan’s position “There is no community – except in semantic terms.”
So true, especially locally.
Community is generally defined as a social unit of any size(though usually small) that shares common values. As much as the major players (both groups AND individuals) continually pontificate about it, the notion of any sort of community at large here is somewhat farcical. Why do I believe that? Common values and participation in the whole–or the lack of both of those.
What we do have, however, for better and worse is a VERY loose coalition of separate communities, often centered on a group or location. Sometimes they are centered on a dogma, location, particular interest, or even a lack of dogma. For some, ‘community’ is limited to their community only; anyone who does/does not subscribe to their rules or system doesn’t count. For others, ‘community’ is a way to easily define everyone who’s kinky, whether they have the same values or not.
Pan’s very plain disgust with the commodification of our sex lives and kinks is something that I wholeheartedly share. Fun is expensive, I get that, but if your WHOLE GOAL is to make money of off what makes me get hard, then fuck you.
If you need a cover or donation for a party or event or whatever, let people know how their funds get spent. If you’re holding an event SPECIFICALLY AS A FUNDRAISER, to make money to pay for X, Y, or Z, then be up front about it! People know and understand that event planners/organizers and venue owners need to fairly compensate presenters, keep the lights on or condom and lube bowls full, and the water running.
While I fully understand the realities of funding the fun, I also FIRMLY believe in being open and transparent about it.We can prattle on and on about community, but until people get over themselves, their dogma, or their desire to just get wasted and have some pervy fun and actually do something to benefit EVERYONE regardless of their group affiliation(s) ‘community’ is a farce and you should stop fucking saying it like it’s some magical pie in the sky pervy paradise. If you really are interested in the Community and how you can be a be contributing member of it, here’s some suggestions:
- Don’t shop at wildly overpriced stores that seek to enrich someone and add no benefit to the community.
- Get over yourself; kink doesn’t make you better then anyone else.
- Don’t attend wildly overpriced events or those that refuse to be CRYSTAL clear about where the money’s going.
- Get over your group; just because your group thinks it’s the one true way does not mean it is such or that it will work out for everyone. YOU ARE NOT YOUR FUCKING KHAKIS!
- Go to a party or event hosted by another group.
- Avoid pointless gossip and drama
- Patronize and FAIRLY compensate local artisans or performers.
- Go volunteer AT SOMEONE ELSE’S PARTY.
- Freely share your knowledge with those who want to learn; don’t expect a new recruit, BJ, $10 at the door, or anything else in return.Avoid hasty words and acts; act carefully and share legit information only when fully confident of the facts.
- Educate yourself and use your new knowledge or skill to better your fellow man (pervy and ‘nilla too!)
- Speak up if you see something untoward going on; we are all responsible for keeping each other healthy and safe.
That’s MY two cents. Sometimes I’m pretty shitty at following my own suggestions too. I’ll STFU now.
Hey_Nurse is a crass, cynical, severely smartassed, impatient, slightly intolerant (especially if you’re a dumbfuck of any sort), somewhat sadistic, creative, intelligent, perverse (but only in a good way), snarky, somewhat sunburnt, addicted to technogoodies, in love with the night, and crazy about industrial music.He drinks too much, drives too fast, loves cheap cigars, blows too much cash on random shit, and says fuck way too much. He keeps a blog at: