Fetlife is a website owned by BitLove Inc, which appears innocuous on the surface as a place for 1.6 million consenting adults to share mostly home made pornographic photographs and stories.
However, this website does not bother to validate the age or even the email address of anyone who registers for an account, and in fact it is possible to create a new account in less than a minute with no checks and a temporary email like those offered by guerrillamail.com or 10minutemail.com
This means that minors can gain access to the content of Fetlife in under a minute. It also makes the site a place were stalking and harassment are out of control as reprimanding or banning people is meaningless when a new account can be created that easily.
Some of the content of Fetlife is genuinely extreme, showing simulated rape, bondage, beatings, the branding or cutting of human skin and even some things that beggar belief like pictures of male genitalia that have been split in two.
More disturbingly, there is pornography featuring small animals being killed, known as 'crush', in which the animals are stood on by women wearing high heeled shoes. The owners of Fetlife do not appear to be bothered about this.
Some of the more extreme content is illegal in some of the more conservative
jurisdictions, for example the United Kingdom, where possession of this is prosecutable under laws specifically forbidding images showing non-trifling injuries to breast or genitals. Some 'artwork' on Fetlife would also meet the criteria for what is considered child pornography in the UK.
Another disturbing feature is the silencing of victims of rape, assault or harassment, not just on the site itself, but in some cases on other sites too by filing false DMCA claims eg to get evidence of abusive or threatening behaviour such as screen captures taken down.
While Fetlife may not be bothered about any of the above, it is still dependent on it's domain registration for a web address, and on hosting for it's content.
Information about these was obtained from Netcraft:
Fetlife uses godaddy.com for it's domain registration and IBM for it's hosting.
I am suggesting that we petition godaddy and IBM to force Fetlife to clean up it's act by:
1) Requiring credit card authentication to create an account, which would prevent minors from gaining access and also make it harder for people who are banned for abuse to create an endless stream of new accounts.
2) Having a zero tolerance policy on any images showing animals being killed or harmed, injuries to genitalia, and any content featuring underage people, including depictions of minors.
Please sign this petition to tell godaddy and IBM that we will not tolerate their support of Fetlife.
If you want, you can also complain to Fetlife directly and see if that helps to get the message across.
Their email is: email@example.com
or you could snailmail them at:
137-4438 West 10th Avenue
Vancouver, BC, Canada
While I realise that asking for 1 million signatures sounds like a lot, this is somewhat fewer than the number of registered users on Fetlife itself and an opportunity to show BitLove that having that level of support does not mean that they cannot be held accountable.
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