Privacy: How to Protect Yours

For many kinksters, privacy is a key concern. However, while there is no foolproof way to maintain your privacy, there are many small steps that you can take to safeguard your identity online. It is relatively trivial to piece together someone’s identity using multiple small pieces of information that can be cross-referenced and linked together. Whilst someone knowing your real first name is unlikely to figure out your identity, knowing your occupation, profile name, and your first name is going to make it much easier for someone to link something up.

In this guide, I’m going to focus on protecting your identity online, and leave the IP anonymity tips to the experts. As I live in Singapore, some of the tips are in the local context, however, I think most should be applicable globally.

Profiles

  • Don’t use the same kinky profile name that you’ve used anywhere else for any non-kink related social media, game, forum, blog, etc. I’ve had a few kinky friends use their kink names for games like Ingress/PokemonGo (GPS-tracking games… what could go wrong here…)
  • Don’t reuse your profile descriptions from OKCupid, Tinder or other vanilla dating sites
  • Kinky “profiles” include Fetlife, Recon, the instant messenger client you choose to use (kik, telegram, Line, wechat, etc), your email address (the part before the @).
  • Create a set of email/messenger accounts that will purely be used for kinky purposes, and are not linked to your vanilla identity.
  • Fetlife’s history feature will also show your previous username if it hasn’t scrolled off. So if you joined the site using an easily identifiable username, I would advise you to start a new account instead of changing the username.

Phone numbers

  • For convenience, many of us give out our phone numbers for whatsapp, SMS or voice contact.
  • Facebook. Don’t give Facebook your phone number. Even if you don’t give Facebook access to your address book or contact list, if your phone number appears in someone else’s address book, Facebook will use this information to make friend suggestions. If you have your face showing in your Facebook photo, someone just found out your real name.
  • Reverse lookups are not terribly difficult to do for phone numbers
  • Your whatsapp name will appear when sending whatsapp messages to new contacts. As I give my number out to both vanilla and kinky folk, I use generic emoji instead of a name in whatsapp. My whatsapp profile photo doesn’t have my face or identifying information.
  • Don’t use messengers that link your phone number for kinky purposes.
  • For maximum privacy, use a burner phone number for kink, preferably pre-paid, and linked only to a dumbphone. That said, the Singapore government requires your ID to be recorded whenever you buy a pre-paid SIM card. Google Voice numbers allow you to have multiple numbers on a single phone.

Pictures/Videos/Images

  • Don’t use any pictures on FL that have ever appeared on any other non-kink related social media. This includes photos of your dog, faceless vanilla photos, etc. Reverse image searches (such as Tineye, Google Image Search) are surprisingly powerful.
  • Don’t have a face photo as the profile photo on your Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn etc. This will make it harder for people to simply browse for your profile if they’ve somehow managed to find out your real name
  • Be careful about identifying marks/information in your photos. This could include jewelry, tattoos, unique scars, etc.
  • Be wary of appearing in the background of photos taken during kink events. Look out for mirrors as well.
  • Strip metadata from your pictures before sending/posting them. Fetlife does this, but if you want to be extra careful, you should use appropriate programs to strip metadata from your photos. Metadata can include the type of device used to take the photo, the GPS location (often your home)
  • Cropped photos often retain the original image in the metadata. It is best to either strip the metadata, or crop out features when taking the photo itself.

Your Job/School

  • This usually comes up during conversation with kinksters that you’ve just met. This is such a common ice-breaking question during vanilla introductions that many people just default to it during kink introductions as well. I politely deflect the question, and if pressed, I just say “no”.
  • Be vague about the industry you work in, and be really careful about naming the exact company that you work for

Things lying in plain sight

  • If you are hosting a play session, you might want to sanitize your home of anything that might reveal sensitive information.
  • This might include: mail, business cards, bank statements, personal correspondence, T-shirts/bags/caps with your company name on it, magazines, Redmart delivery bags, etc
  • Don’t leave your phone lying around during play. Messages often show up on the lock screen, with your vanilla profile name showing.
  • Don’t pass your phone to someone. Messages/emails from your vanilla account might pop up while they are looking at that pretty picture of you in rope.

Transit hotels in Singapore

  • If you use a transit hotel in Singapore for a short-term booking (2+ hours), both of you will be required to hand over your identity documents to the counter staff. If you’re not comfortable with that, don’t use these venues.
  • In addition, the counter staff will simply hand both cards back to one of you when they are done scanning the data. If you don’t want your play partner to know your real name, address, age, NRIC number, etc, you might want to be the one picking the cards up.

Do let me know if you have any further tips and suggestions.

Asia Kink Con (SG) Rope Instructor/Performer: Nawakiri Shin

Shin

SLAP! is pleased to announce that Nawakiri Shin will be performing and teaching at Asia Kink Con (SG) 2015. (November 20th – 21st)

Nawakiri Shin started learning shibari in 2004. He is a founding member of BDSM.TW, the only BDSM support group in Taiwan, and the author of Essence of Shibari, 繩縛本事, a Chinese book on shibari.

He has performed in various events, both local and international, including Toubaku 2011 in Tokyo, London Festival of the Art of Japanese Rope Bondage 2012 and 2013, Asia Adult Expo in 2013, and in the Taipei Fringe Festival every year during 2011 – 2014. Besides performing, he also teaches shibari classes in Taipei every week.

Early in his career as a rope artist, he developed a reputation for his dynamic style, speedy tying, and dramatic performances. Over the years he has been transitioning into a more intimate, emotional style of bondage, creating a sense of love and connection which he hopes the audience will share.

More about Nawakiri Shin

Workshops taught:

  • Shibari 101. Starting out with rope bondage
  • Tying with connection
  • Intermediate rope

Please join SLAP! and turn email notifications on to receive the latest updates and signup information for Asia Kink Con (SG).

Basic Rope Handling: Joining/Extending Rope for Shibari

To maintain fluidity and increase the speed of tying, Shibari typically uses medium length ropes of 7-10m. This means that you will have to extend your ropes regularly while tying.

Safety

A knot is required to join the ropes together. If the knot is located at a point where it will place pressure on nerves and arteries, this can be dangerous. Adjust the positioning of the knot to avoid placing pressure over danger points. Common danger points include the nerves under the armpit, as well as radial nerve on the upper arm. The knot should never be under your armpit or on your upper arm wraps in a takate kote.

Methods

1. Lark’s head

  • Your rope needs to have knotted ends.
  • Both ends of the rope must be even. If the ends are uneven, all the pressure will be placed on the longer end of the rope. To remedy this, go to the last point at which the old rope crosses another structural rope, and loop the longer end around it until both sides are even.

2. Sheet Bend (Preferred)

The sheet bend is my preferred method of extending rope as it is more versatile.

  • It works on rope without knotted ends, such as ropes with whipped ends.
  • It works even when the ends of the rope are uneven.
  • It allows you to join a new rope anywhere along the old rope. This is important for avoiding pressure points (see safety note).

There are two commonly used methods. The first involves directly tying a sheet bend. This is my preferred method.

The second method involves separating or splitting the 2 loops of a lark’s head to form a sheet bend. (same video as in part 1)

Singapore Learn And Play (SLAP!) is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community. SLAP! Rope Socials are casual events revolving around rope bondage, meant for both riggers and bottoms. Demonstrate your favorite ties and exchange tips and techniques with other attendees. For more information on our upcoming events, visit our Fetlife discussion group or sign up for our mailing list

Basic whip tutorials for sport cracking and scene play

Here’s a list of the most instructional whip cracking tutorials I found. Not all the cracks are applicable to BDSM/kink scenes, but some of the flicks are quite useful for wraps and targeting.

Wraps (Demonstration-only, not instructional)

Robbie Amper of Whip-Basics using cattleman’s crack and sidearm flicks for wraps.

Adam Winrich uses the forward vertical and sidearm flicks for doing his wraps and targeting.

Alexander Jacob of Cobra Whips using the sidearm flick, forward vertical and underhand flicks for body wraps

Cattleman’s/Circus/Gypsy crack

Reverse cattleman’s crack

Highwayman/Coachman’s crack

Overhead crack

Reverse overhead crack

Forward flick

Forward vertical

Underhand flick

Sidearm flick

Singapore Learn And Play (SLAP!) is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community.

Somerville Bowline: A more secure single column tie

When Nawakiri Shin was at the SLAP! rope social in November, he showed us a more secure way to tie a single-column tie called the Somerville Bowline. This was originally invented by @Topologist in 2009.

The most common type of single-column tie, the Boola Boola, has a tendency to collapse if the line tension shifts and comes in from the wrong direction. The Somerville bowline addresses this weakness and is stable under tension from multiple directions. It tends to be a bit looser, and is less suitable for ties that require tight wraps.

The original blog post describing the tie can be found HERE.

Here’s a video tutorial on how to do the Somerville Bowline:

 

Singapore Learn And Play (SLAP!) is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community. SLAP! Rope Socials are casual events revolving around rope bondage, meant for both riggers and bottoms. Demonstrate your favorite ties and exchange tips and techniques with other attendees. For more information on our upcoming events, visit our Fetlife discussion group or sign up for our mailing list

How to clean out your rectum for anal play

I had the privilege of teaching a class on anal play this weekend, as part of SLAP!’s December series of skill shares. I’d like to thank the participants for being so engaged. I had a lot of fun sharing my knowledge with you.

During our class, we went over how to clean your rectum for basic anal play. This method will cover 95% of all anal play scenarios, other than deep fisting and deep enema play. Here’s a good video that goes over the key principles. The video uses a shower-shot, but any of the usual enema methods will work.

  • Don’t use too much water. We don’t want water going into the colon
  • Water going into the colon tends to get trapped and stimulate the intestines into moving more feces down. This tends to lead to a bit of a mess
  • You’ll need to experiment to get the amount of water right
  • Rinse and repeat until the water runs clear
  • (Optional) Wait 1-2 hours for any remaining water to get re-absorbed by the rectum

SLAP! is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community. The SLAP! Skill­Share Series is aimed at helping members learn or refine techniques, with the main focus being on safety. These are either non­demo (lecture style) or demo (hands­-on workshop) and are held in private spaces. For more information on our upcoming events, visit our Fetlife discussion group or sign up for our mailing list

Rope Safety and Nerve Injuries

Photographer: immoralrestraint Model: adriannamay

Photographer: immoralrestraint
Model: adriannamay

One of our members recently posted a guide on Fetlife about various resources covering rope safety. With their permission, we are re-posting it here. [We have also added new links that we’ve found useful]

As rope bondage is one of the most popular kinks among our members, we think it’s important that both bottoms and tops are aware of the risks involved in rope bondage, and take appropriate steps to mitigate that risk. Play safe and have fun!


I’ve been reading about rope safety because I’ve heard a lot about the risks of nerve injury. Thought it would be good to share what I’ve found.

Links

Remedial RopesSite focused on rope safety, with a heavy emphasis on nerve damage.

A guide for rope bottoms and bondage models This link has photos of good and bad rope placement.

On My Nerves, Part 1 (signs of a bondage injury) Lists warning signs and gives some basic anatomy.

Nerve and Circulation Problems This link has diagrams that might be helpful.

The Little Guide to Getting Tied Up (Including Suspensions)

This is a book by Evie Vane. Covers more than all the online articles I’ve seen combined. Also includes stuff about the psych side of rope bottoming, e.g. mindfulness, communication, and instincts. It’s super detailed and useful.

Relevant Discussion Groups on Fetlife

Rope Bottom’s Roundtable

Riggers and Rope Sluts

Rope Incident Reports

The Low-Down on Authority-Based Relationships

SLAP! has had the good fortune to host a number of very experienced and knowledgeable BDSM practitioners since we first started about six months back. In September this year, a lovely couple from Seattle passed our shores and expressed their desire to run a workshop on authority-based relationships. Of course, we complied. This lovely pair, BrianR and MelR, also happen to be title holders. Together, they hold the titles of Northwest Master and slave 2013.

If you read that sentence more than once, don’t worry because I was as bewildered when I first heard their titles. You mean there are competitions for BDSM? That was the first question that ran through my mind. How does one compete for the title of best slave? That was the second question. I had a brief image of a woman in fetish gear being put through her paces like in a dog show. Very kinky, but I had a feeling I wasn’t quite right.

I googled the competition and this is what I found –

The Northwest regional Master/slave contest takes place at Northwest Leather Celebration. This contest celebrates the Master/slave dynamic by providing positive outreach to the community at large. The purpose is education – promotion of healthy leather relationships. To qualify, contestants must have been part of their current self-identified Master/slave relationship for at least one full year. The contest is for pairs who identify as Master/slave regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. The title holders will be expected to honor the title by helping educate the leather community as a whole about the Master/slave lifestyle. It is also expected that title holders will attend/teach at a minimum of four events during their title year. Titleholders are encouraged (but not required) to actively pursue fundraising for the charity of their choice as a way of giving back to the community.

When I finally got to meet BrianR and MelR in the flesh, they gave us more information about the competition and reinforced that their titles were teaching ones. I was impressed and counted my lucky stars for having the opportunity to meet them in Singapore. What were the chances? Anyway, I learnt a lot from the 101 workshop entitled “Authority-Based Relationships” that BrianR and MelR ran, and I thought I would share my takeaways with you.

The main thing I learnt was that authority-based relationships can exist anywhere, both in the kink and vanilla spheres. BrianR shared that it isn’t uncommon for one party to ‘wear the pants’ in a vanilla marriage/relationship. I could relate because I was brought up by parents who were clearly in an authority-based relationship, but vanilla. My mother was in charge. She controlled the finances so tightly that she gave my father a monthly allowance of eight hundred dollars after pocketing the rest of his pretty sizeable income for “household needs”. She was the loudest person in the home, always forcing her opinions on others. Even as a mere child, I could sense my father’s displeasure at having to give up so much of his hard-earned money, even if it was for the family. It didn’t take long before their marriage fell apart and my father had an affair with a woman from a third world nation who looked up to him despite his faults.

While there are certainly vanilla authority-based relationships that thrive, it is apparent that my parents’ relationship did not because neither of them was entirely comfortable about the role they had ‘chosen’ for themselves. My father felt emasculated by my mother’s need to control everything, and my mother was crying out for my father to, for once, step up and ‘be a man’. I know this from the things she told me on the many occasions when she broke down in disappointment with my father. I didn’t know how to tell her that she was setting herself up for failure. Sadly, in most vanilla authority-based relationships, the exchange of authority or power is not something that is discussed earlier; in many cases, even if it is, individuals might find themselves adhering to cultural norms rather than choosing to take or give up authority.

The difference, therefore, between a successful authority-based relationship and what I just described is consent and negotiation. Whether a couple identifies as top/bottom, dominant/submissive or master/slave, the authority in the relationship is clearly acknowledged by both parties who make an informed decision about how they want to manage that authority.

A top/bottom couple usually find themselves in a transactional relationship. Polyskeptic describes a transactional relationship as “a relationship where both (or all) parties are in it for themselves, and where partners do things for each other with the expectation of reciprocation.” In such a dynamic, while the top is expected to accept responsibility for what he/she does and to work within the skills he/she has acquired and the consent negotiated with the bottom, the bottom is expected to accept responsibility for what he/she wants done and to provide the top with clear limits. At any time, either party can stop the scene without feeling a sense of failure. As you can see, the authority in such a relationship exists as something that the couple can manipulate for their mutual enjoyment. This empowers them both, something that was lacking in the example of my parents.

A dominant/submissive couple, by BrianR and MelR’s definition, and also by mine, is one in which areas exist where control is neither given nor taken. As with tops, dominants must accept responsibility for their actions and consequences within the scope of the negotiations, and submissives, like bottoms, need to accept responsibility for their own best interest. Both have the right to refuse to do things that are not in their best interest. The giving and taking of authority is, yet again, an empowering affair.

Finally, the master/slave dynamic, that Master and I subscribe to, thrives on the understanding that the slave’s consent needs only be given once. After this, they are not expected to dissent. Some of you might wonder about my psychological stability, but let me assure you that I am very happy and very confident in my relationship. This is not a case of stockholm syndrome. I thrive on the knowledge that I trust my Master to make decisions with our best interests at heart. Similarly, Master thrives on the knowledge that I have trust that he will lead our relationship the way that he deems best. Is it easy? No… But that’s fodder for another article that I will write some other day.

For now, I leave you with this conclusion on authority-based relationships. If you desire to be in an authority-based relationship, make sure that you first examine your motivations for doing so. Engage in lengthy negotiations with your partner to ensure that the two of you are on the same page. Deal with the authority in your relationship as something very precious. It must be given and received, not unwillingly lost or taken. With the correct foundation, an authority-based relationship can be extremely satisfying. You’ll still have to work hard to iron out kinks along the way (kinks… geddit geddit?), but at least you’ll both be working towards a clear goal.

If you’re interested, but you still feel like you need to talk to someone who has some experience, feel free to email me at amberwine@gmail.com.

Singapore Learn and Play (SLAP!) is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community. The SLAP! Skill­Share Series is aimed at helping members learn or refine techniques, with the main focus being on safety. These are either non-­demo (lecture style) or demo (hands­-on workshop) and are held in private spaces. For more information on our upcoming events, visit our Fetlife discussion group or sign up for our mailing list

How not to do a caning (and more than 10 tips to hit your sub safely)

I came across this picture of a bottom after a heavy caning session. The Top was quite clearly unsafe during this scene, hitting the kidney area with sufficient force to cause bruising and welts. Don’t hit the kidney area unless you want to cause some serious internal damage to your bottom!

97ZrkjF

Here are some guidelines that SLAP! put together and distributed during our Impact Play Workshop, in conjunction with our presenters. While certainly not exhaustive, we believe that it’s a good starting point. Play Safe and Have Fun!

KNOW YOUR BODY

  • Certain parts of the body are more suitable than others for impact play.
  • While light impact play is suitable against the face, feet, hands, breasts, lower legs, and genitals, heavy impact play should only be exercised against places with high fat and muscle content– so, the thighs, buttocks, lower shoulders, and at either side of the spine.
  • Keep in mind to not hit at the front of side of the body, where you run the risk of hitting vital organs.
  • You should never engage in heavy impact play against the face, neck, head, fingers, toes, or over skin that is healing.

SAFER AREAS FOR IMPACT PLAY

Here’s a pictorial guide. Red for No-go, Yellow for proceed with caution, Green for more suitable areas.

AREAS TO AVOID

  • Kidneys. The kidneys are located in the area of the back between the bottom of the ribcage and the top of the butt.
  • Tailbone. The tailbone is located at the base of the spine, it can be cracked or broken if hit.
  • Hips. The sides of the bum and along the bony part of the hips, where several nerves are located.
  • Spine. The spine, along the back, has several small bones that can be cracked or bruised.
  • Neck. The neck is a very sensitive area where many major arteries, tendons, glands, and lymph nodes are located, not to mention the larynx, and should never be hit!
  • Face. Although face slapping and other impacts to the face are sometimes seen it is best to avoid hitting this area of the body. There are many sensitive areas (sinuses, eyes, lips, cheekbones, etc) that can be easily damaged and those injuries could be permanent!
  • Ears. Hitting someone on the ears can cause permanent damage to their hearing or sense of balance.

TIPS

  • Stick to larger muscle groups.
  • Avoid places like lower back, kidneys and stomach, because hitting internal organs can cause dangerous internal bleeding.
  • Do not strike joints, bony areas, or spine. You can cause joint pain and troubles for your partner later.
  • Make sure your implement hits your target. Practice and communicate! Don’t let the flogger or toy get out of your control and wrap around the shoulders, hips or other sensitive areas.
  • Make sure you are not hitting anything/anyone on your backswing.
  • Genitals and breasts can only take a light to moderate level of impact.

THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR

  • Impact to the breasts can cause cysts to form.
  • Leather Butt – nerve endings in an area can get damaged from repeated heavy playing. You can avoid this by mixing up the parts of the body you play with, and giving yourself plenty of time to heal between scenes.
  • Watch for broken skin. If you do accidentally draw blood, keep the area clean with alcohol wipes, put on some gloves and clean your toys
  • Make sure your toys are in good shape. Damaged toys can cause unintended injury
  • Remove any jewellery before engaging in impact play. Rings and bracelets can cut, and earrings can accidentally be torn off.
  • The only alcohol involved should be used for disinfection. Drinking while playing affects your aim and judgement.

SAFE WORDS

  • Safewords and safe signals are important.
  • A safe word is established so that the action can be stopped instantly should anything go wrong.
  • A safe signal is used in situations where a word cannot be spoken, e.g., when the submissive is gagged or is wearing a hood.
  • Sometimes you could use a specific series of grunts, or it may be possible to hang on tightly to a bell and dropping it would be the safe signal.
  • A dominant should trust that the submissive will use his/her safe word if things are going too far. However, he/she must also look out for signs (eg: subspace) when the submissive is unable to use their safe word.

LIMITS

  • Establish limits before play – both hard and soft.
  • For impact play, limits may be necessary due to physical problems (certain injuries) or mental and emotional reasons.
  • Limits must be respected

Singapore Learn and Play (SLAP!) is a non-profit group that delivers quality learning experiences for the Singapore BDSM community. The SLAP! Skill­Share Series is aimed at helping members learn or refine techniques, with the main focus being on safety. These are either non-­demo (lecture style) or demo (hands­-on workshop) and are held in private spaces. For more information on our upcoming events, visit our Fetlife discussion group or sign up for our mailing list

First Time Meetings

– adapted from the article contributed by zwith

You have been chatting with someone online or at a munch for a while now and you want to meet up and get to know them better, or even consider playing. You arrange for a time and place to meet, and if all goes well, it could be the first steps to a potentially awesome play session.

There is always a lot of excitement and anxiety surrounding a first meeting, but there are also many ways that things can go wrong.

Some questions you should always ask yourself include:

  • Who am I meeting?
  • What are we doing at the meeting?
  • When and where are we meeting?
  • What safety precautions can I take?

Agenda

What is the purpose of the meet up? Is it to get to know the other person better with the objective of potential play? Is it to negotiate the scene?

Set the agenda of the meeting. Stick to it.

If your objective is to find out more about the person, then don’t jump into play right away on the first (or even second) meeting.

Who are you meeting?

It doesn’t hurt to do a little bit of cyber-stalking before you meet. You will be able to find hints about the person you are meeting from the photos he/she likes and his/her comments on threads. But don’t go all psycho stalker too, obviously.

Do your research on that person. Get references. Talk to others in the community and ask about their impression of the person you are meeting.

Location, location, location

Always meet in a public place. Like a place full of people.

A secluded bar that no one else goes to is not a public place. The void deck below his/her home that is quiet and undisturbed is not a public place.

You don’t want to be caught in a situation that you cannot get out of, especially when you don’t know the other person yet. A public place ensures that you always have help nearby or can run away should the situation turn bad.

Red flags should be raised if he/she does not want to meet in a public place.

Safe Calls

Whether you are a newbie or an experienced player, safe calls are very important for first time meetings.

Get a friend to check in with you at regular intervals, and pre-arrange coded answers. Also let your friend know where and what time you are meeting, and update your friend if anything changes.

Friend: Is everything ok?
You: Yea, I wanna eat chicken rice tomorrow. (if everything is ok)
OR
You: Yup, we’re still meeting tonight. Are you picking me up? (if things are not ok)

You don’t have to tell your friend that you are meeting someone kinky. I told my safe call that I was going on a blind date and to check in on me in case he turned out to be an axe-wielding mass murderer.

Let the person you are meeting know that you have a safe call in place. If he/she objects to it, it raises a red flag early and you would have averted a potential disaster. If the person you are meeting is serious about the lifestyle, he/she will appreciate the fact that you are taking the meeting seriously too.

Personally, I also like to have an “out” or “escape plan”. For example, if you are meeting at 7pm, say that you are also meeting other friends at 10pm.

Don’t get drunk

While alcohol is a great social lubricant, getting high or drunk is not.

You want a clear mind to judge a person’s character during that first meeting. More importantly, you want a clear mind to make safety calls and judgements for yourself.

Drink only if you have to, and within your limits. If you know that you will get high after 2 drinks, have only 1. If you can’t hold your liquor, drink juice.


When all is said and done, the most important thing to remember is to enjoy yourself! First time meetings are like going on dates. Have fun, find out about the other person, see if you connect, and maybe one day you can talk about playing.