Corporations Hate Kinky Sex

Credit card providers don't want you to have kinky sex.At the time of writing, Patreon and Twitter are both going through a phase of removing adult content. Patreon changed their ToU, while Twitter has been merrily shadowbanning accounts it deems sensitive, trimming them from the general popular discourse.

Twitter managed to hit historical expert @Whoresofyore during her book promo, while Ferns of Domme Chronicles and a number of other prominent sex bloggers have discovered they have been secretly muzzled. That’s what makes Twitter’s handling of things particularly frustrating- nobody knows how your posts and content pass the threshold of unacceptable. And nobody notifies you. You just need to figure out if you have been silo’d.

This was in the heels of, and overlapping with the Patreon change. Those who make porn remain ever vigilant that the guidelines of a corporation will crush them. It’s old, tired and familiar by now, part of an ongoing trend.

I had been thinking of making the switch to Patreon support, so I could put more effort into content and less into other sources of revenue, both linkbuilding for SEO (which I am iffy about) and the unreliability of getting scraps of freelance story requests. I don’t think that is as likely to be a viable option and that frustrates me. And that’s the challenge here, with trying to make adult oriented, and to be explicit, sexual art. Everyone wants the fucking stuff, but nobody wants to pay for it and admit they want it or give it space in the mainstream.

And when we do try to make stuff easier to pay for, we get yanked around by the credit card providers and financial brokers that underpin the transactions that make this possible. Because they are private corporations, unlike writing to my MP, it is considered to be a privilege to me that a few companies have a monopoly on most of the use of money that I do I and everyone else has no recourse.

The truth is, credit card providers don’t want you to have kinky or unregulated sex, and sites like Patreon are hostage to that. Meanwhile Twitter’s logic seems to be tied with the same efforts to try to scrub out trollish harassing nazis- only they remain more interested in punishing outspoken women than the people who bother them.  And at it’s core it’s a problem with our heavy dependency on for profit business to maintain platforms of public discourse but also the fuzzy moral madness around sex in society at large.

This is part of an ongoing war, both government side, and through the whims of the monopolistic control of private corporations, to decide what kind of sex you are allowed to have and talk about.


I will expand: The other week I interviewed with a MajorPornCompany (TM) and my interview (which I fucking ACED) devolved into discussing the content versus the clients’s wished. Specifically “rough sex”. The clients want envelope pushing brutality, the credit card providers scream like man with a toothache eating toffee if it strays from the guidelines. The same thing happened to fetlife, and kink.com. The result, very samey porn and ridiculous bending over backwards edge cases and technical not rule breaking.

Same shit on clips for sale, with prodoms running around with a thesaurus trying to come up with more acceptable ways to say “hypnosis” because a video of JOI telling him “you have no choooice” is apparently a hazard. Same for all sorts of advertising and publishing- Smashwords recently started trying to get you to self identify potentially contraversial scenes in your work to play nicely with retailers who aren’t sure they want to peddle certain categories of porn, while Amazon writers can’t use the internal ads system for their erotica- though the 50Shades male perspective novel was of course exempt. Can’t be having with your erotic romance unless it’s already an international phenomena!

Basically credit card providers re-enforce the kinds of sex they tolerate, while a lot of sites live in desperate fear of being branded as being primarily for porn. They are particularly inclined to hammer indie content makers, but nobody is immune to their sausage fingers squashing you.

Paypal notoriously lets themselves enforce know-it-when-I-see-it guidelines and steals money left in its accounts when it decides it doesn’t like you anymore. They are also happy to piss all over sites like Patreon which try to be more liberal about their allowances. Googlewallet likes to fuck with people who make handmade sex toys.

Even youtube is having a lovely new level of horseshit with their advertising standards autoflagger- which demonstrably cares not one jot for the content but tries to protect people from informative videos about being transgender. The money, of course is a problem.

A lot of these social media platforms do not turn a profit. They are incredibly culturally influential, forming the backbone of how modern people across large swathes of society talk to each other, but even with ad revenue, the cost of them existing and their popularity does not correlate with cash. This leaves such sites particularly vulnerable to anything that might twig their revenue stream.

There is also a desperate fear of the stigma of being known as being “for porn” because we’re all ashamed to admit we personally fill every square feet of any communication space we are given with all the sex we can cram in. Critics of 50shades get frustrated that very bland bodice ripper billionare erotica gets treated like a ground breaking first-in-field that invented sex, but the popular wave that let people briefly escape the arbitrary moral restriction on porn and sexual content by sheer volume (it’s empowering! it’s not self indulgent, it’s self care! yah!) is part of that. After centuries of social discourse, we are still making dividing lines between Good Society and Bad Society.

In this case, Youtube and Twitter get horrendously sex negative because they want to be paletable to advertisers. Caught in this squeeze between ad revenue, credit card providers and governments, sexuality suffers. Our presence pops out of existence, leaving a few socially approved authorities or a minority of people able to scratch out a living beyond the social pale as our spokes people.

That, for lifestyle femdoms, is part of our problem. Historically our conversation is pro dominated because sex workers are so abused that once pushed out of mainstream society, those that could survive there became our voice. Since their livelihoods already made them pay the price of a stigma, they became the sorce of education, bringing the norms of their work to the popular understanding of how female dominance is supposed to work.

If you are ever mad at the idea that all male subs are basically clients, don’t blame your neighbourhood dominatrix- blame that people like me cling to our reputation enough that we can’t talk about non-normative sexual behaviour in such a volume to establish our presence.

And there is no solidarity in sexual art. Fetlife and Patreon (and Paypal back in the day) all depend on sexual envelope pushing, but when a new middle ground is established and a site gets mainstream credibility, they prune the fuck out of all the edge cases to cling to that veneer of respectability.

This is happening at the same time as renewed efforts to crack down on sexual content on the internet grind down from governments. Most people who are into kinky sex and interested in the story of how porn changed are familiar with how anti-terrorist measures were used to destroy Insex.

This kind of tut-tut moralistic censor by squick is also a huge problem if you are trying to participate in ostensibly sexually free spaces. Like I don’t particularly like those sorts of weird vore-snuff where the girl is in a state of sexual ecstasy through her very improbable public murder. I think is is weird and gross. But it is definitely harmless that someone out there likes writing breathlessly adorably voiced stories about a trio of fairy pigs having their final throws. I have to therefore endorse Your Kink Is Not My Kink But Your Kink Is Ok.

I just want there to be less real assault and harassment, irrespective of the presensence of sex. Otherwise I try to make space for everyone. And hell, I can’t feel comfortable being a snarky review battleaxe about the vast majority of kindle femdom erotica thinking that femdom = prodom when we are all under siege. Likewise I would like to have more energy to call out nonsense like Cara Sutra’s flat out stupid and harmful explanation of the difference between lifestyle and pros without having to worry about her being silenced for talking about sex at all.

People are very good at deciding that their sex is safe, but everyone else’s just isn’t ok. Long term readers know that I experimented with different places to put my femdom stories, tried literarotica and found it was a hostile space specifically for femdom content. I write a range. The Friday bits I sometimes churn out are loving couples, consensual and cozy. I could probably publish them anywhere. The Pet Gentleman (aka Catamite), is not. It’s really gosh darn evil…fiction. And actually not unlike the M/f stuff out there (although without a trace of ego inflation, mine is better than most stuff), but it didn’t stop the volunteer censor from having a apoplexy and bouncing the story from its catalog.

And trying to post it on there in the first place was a nightmare. Did you know that they have non-con permissible, but “rape” not? There’s a whole world of toxic misunderstanding about consent that gets tied up in efforts to create non-con porn to pass censors is a universal ridiculousness. It’s honestly well beyond this particular site.  If I read another erotic romance where she is kidnapped and so forth, but somehow the sex itself that is framed in definitely intended to be threatening circumstances is tooootes consensual, I will break my kindle from throwing it down in condescending mirth.

Femdom content in particular, and women’s bodies, get policed extra hard. Our nipples are too naughty for public (but men’s are not) and measure to control what is acceptable tend to hit us first (a tour of literotica’s catalog shows way more tolerance of M/f than F/m). UK censor laws bizarrely hit a whole bunch of female specific things like facesitting, while everyone’s government insists that “squirting” is peeing and verbotten. (WHY DOES THIS MATTER? Even if it was urine, who cares?)

If we aren’t being covered up, places like Australia are busy regulating the type of body you are allowed to be attracted to, no small tits or prominent inner labia please! Your flower better keep closed and tucked, and everyone knows that cherries on top are just a gateway to thinking about little girls, right? A page 3 girl is a lovely idea in the UK, as is candid snaps of some celebrity’s shocking nipple slip, but even forfend she smother someone with her butt!

You get the same thing going on in very, very conservative religions, where sex is both dirty and profane, and a sacred thing they want you to have a lot of, but only in the right way. Such cultures pat themselves on the back that they have found a solution, while sexuality remains samey, easy to police, and almost universally about fucking people over to sustain the power of a small minority of powerful old men.

What can we do about it? Sweet fuck all, other than talk about it. If there is enough critical mass, sometimes you can get corporations and governments to realize they can’t hide behind “good, normal people don’t want this!” So if you have a social media account, here is your call to action- go share your favourite transgressive artists and adult content creators. Give Whoresofyore’s book a boost, or tweet an appreciative post about your favourite sex blogger, or if you are feeling daring, take to spaces like facebook and remind people at whatever level you are comfortable with, sex exists and needs to be free, but artists need to be able to get paid via mainstream methods.


Are you shadowbanned/blocked on twitter? This tool is helping us figure it out. So far this has not been the case for me.
Ferns wrote some more insightful stuff on the adult blogger apocalypse. 
If you aren’t following them, here are some shadowbanned awesome folks.

 

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1 Comment

  1. wordpress is still the best place to go…so far. Ultimately, bloggers that have banned content will need to host their own websites and encourage readers to share links to it. As far as getting $$ out of the deal…it’s tricky. I’d suggest bitcoin or similar e-currency but it is having problems.

    I like @Whoresofyore ‘s tweets, Ferns, your postings as well as other similar writers. I generally reblog them on wp if the authors do not object (or provide easy access to the “reblog” option).

    Do you have any other suggestions for promoting?

    Reply

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