What is FetLife.com?
Fetlife.com is a social network geared towards the BDSM community. It operates as a platform for users to connect with other people locally and globally who share the same fetishes and interests as they do. FetLife has been adamant about its positioning as a social network rather than a dating site, it aims to bring people together as a community over a one on one basis. It includes numerous forums for individual fetishes, provides listings for local meet up’s and events, and has many educational articles for members of all experience levels.
The site was founded in 2008 by Montreal, Quebec based programmer John Kopanas who goes under the name John Baku on the site. It was originally conceived and created by Kopanas who was frustrated with the fact that he was unable to meet partners with the same fetishes and interests as him. Since there was a lack of platforms available at the time he created the website FriendsWithFetishes in 2007 which served as the base for what would be eventually rebooted as Fetlife.
FetLife touts many of the same features that other familiar social networks advertising. Personal profiles, photo & video feeds, commenting, friend requests, groups, blogging, and more. What set the site apart were the features that specifically catered to those within the BDSM and fetish communities. Things like the ability to display different relationship dynamics, past experiences, fetishes they were interested in or curious about, and community reporting or monitoring features for abusers. Over the years the site has grown to host thousands of users across the globe and is a thriving community of active participants.
In recent years FetLife has found at the center of several controversies. These range from privacy concerns and occasional censorship of accusations towards other community members. The latter is enforced in case these accusations turn out to be untrue and libelous, though many oppose this and feel that people who may be a danger to the community should be identified. In 2017 FetLife lost many of their payment processors due to content in forums that were considered obscene or dangerous. This resulted in the removal of hundreds of forums and posts, much to the dismay of users.
Related practices and fetishes
Fetlife and its members are interested in all aspects of the BDSM and fetish community. Those looking for a more modern platform should check out Whiplr and Whiplrplayground to connect with other lifestyle BDSM practitioners.
Main Site: www.FetLife.com