FETISHWEEK Report: Facebook Deletes Dozens of BDSM Pages Over the Weekend

FETISHWEEK Report: Facebook Deletes Dozens of BDSM Pages Over the Weekend

Last weekend Facebook removed dozens of BDSM-related pages from the site.  The group BDSM Against Censorship lists nearly 100 groups affected by the ban, but there are unquestionably more groups and pages that have not made the list.  Since last weekend a few of the groups have successfully gone through the process of petitioning for reinstatement, but the vast majority have not.

Michelle Fegatofi, author of Bdsm Basics for Beginners – A Guide for Dominants and Submissives Starting to Explore the Lifestyle, lost her group BDSM International last weekend.  The group had over 35,000 members and has not been reinstated by Facebook.

Fegatofi describes how she learned about the fate of her group.  “The only notice I received was a little bubble notice saying it was unpublished and could be appealed, which I have done. The reason was a vague reason saying I violated Facebook regs by having nude, lewd or violent sexual pics posts. Which I did not!”

Facebook did not make a public statement about the reasons for removal of the BDSM groups.  Michelle Fegatofi and others in the BDSM Against Censorship group believe that Laura Bates, founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, writer and activist Soraya Chemaly and Jaclyn Friedman from Women, Action & the Media were either directly or peripherally responsible for Facebook deleting BDSM groups through the hashtag Twitter campaign #FBRape in May 2013.

In a post on their Facebook page, Woman, Action & the Media explains they were not responsible for the Facebook crackdown, “We’ll say this again clearly: WAM! is fully in support of consensual BDSM pages, and have told Facebook explicitly that we oppose their crackdown on these pages. Please ask anyone claiming to attribute a quote to the contrary to us to provide a source for those quotes. They are false, plain and simple.”

Whether the BDSM groups and pages on Facebook were collateral damage from a campaign about violence against women or a decision by Facebook corporate to cut down on adult content, the results are the same; many groups will never return and all BDSM groups on Facebook are at risk from this point forward.  If owners of BDSM pages and groups decide to stay on Facebook then they must assume that their groups can be shuttered at any time.

If you are a member of a Facebook group or page and you are looking to move on from Facebook entirely there are a lot of options out there.  The most obvious choice is Fetlife.com which was established to specifically cater to the BDSM and fetish community and leads the pack among social sites dedicated to BDSM.  If you’re looking for a more mainstream social network, then Yahoo Groups, Tumblr and even Google+ still allow adult discussions, but only Tumblr will allow you to post adult images.  However, the Terms of Service could change with any of those sites as well.

The “unpublishing” of these groups directly affect thousands of people who use the groups for networking and information about BDSM, but none are more affected than the people who have spent years building content and members, only to have it removed overnight.  The founder of the page Bound 4 Trouble put it this way, “It was like a journal of my journey in this lifestyle. Laughter, love, tears and my blood were on there. I’m heart-broken. 15k fans have also joined my journey and have loved, laughed, cried and bled with me. I know that everything happens for a reason and every trial makes us stronger for having survived it. I’m at a loss as to what do with it. I’m losing something dear to me. It’s part of me. I don’t know how to just start over though.”

Please share your story about losing your Facebook group or page in the comments below.  If you have other ideas on where you should host a group besides Facebook, you can share those as well.

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Written by Dirk Hooper

Dirk Hooper is an international fetish photographer, host and producer of The Fetish Show radio program, journalist for the fetish community and expert on personal branding.

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7 Responses to “FETISHWEEK Report: Facebook Deletes Dozens of BDSM Pages Over the Weekend”

  1. fairydragonstar June 30, 2013

    or an even better alternative to Fetlife is http://www.BDSMfriendBOOK.com

    Reply
  2. Swan June 30, 2013

    No not fetlife first of all they delete bdsm meme pics-all pics must be original-that is one of the reasons why we are on facebook in the first place-second Baku who owns the site made a video SEXUALLY harrassing a REAL 9 year old child-in other words he proved himself to be a pedo-

    Reply
  3. Don July 8, 2013

    Do we know if this was Facebook’s doing or were the pages reported? There was an issue a while ago where YouTube was deleting hundreds of gay oriented videos and got a reputation for being homophobic. Then a video was posted where this straight guy was boasting about how he spends his days reporting any video that had any sort of gay content as being offensive because he hates gay people so much. Sometimes the companies automatically delete anything reported as offensive without actually checking them out because there’s just too many to handle. Better to be safe than sorry, I guess. I don’t know what happened with that but is it possible that this is happening as well?

    Reply
  4. Vonn Tramel July 9, 2013

    The Leather Journal http://www.theleatherjournal.com offers social aspects, the largest FREE community calendar, business directory and club directory available anywhere. TLJ is the leather, bdsm, kink and fetish newspaper of record and is available in print, online or in an app for android and iOS.

    Reply
  5. jim talbot July 10, 2013

    Facebook has proven time and time again it is anti gay! and discriminative…. I am surprised a class action lawsuit hasn’t been started against them.

    Reply
  6. jeff July 13, 2013

    I am quite upset about this. however, BDSM pictures may be classifies as violent sexual acts. typical people would probably think of violent sexual acts akin to rape. it may just be some intern that doesn’t understand someone being tied up in a sexual position as consensual.

    Reply

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