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Rayd

philosophy & psychology nerd
Hi, I'm writing an article on what it means to be a Furry and a member of the Furry community. I have 5 questions I would like to ask and would appreciate any responses and insight. Personal anecdotes are encouraged!

1) How does one discover their fursona? What forms of initiation take place when you do figure it out?

2) What are some examples of language or lingo that is exclusive to the Furry community?

3) What is your favorite thing about being apart of the Furry community? How would you describe the community? How long have you been a member? How has it changed?

4) What are Furry meetups or conventions like? What is the atmosphere? What are the activities and events? How do fellow furries interact with each other?

5) What describes the Furry aesthetic? How has it evolved?

1. i agree with the statement above that a fursona isn't "discovered". although it can be based on what you know about yourself, such as your personality, physical features, habits, childhood, etc. - it's something that you create yourself, and is entirely subjective on what fits the person. as far as initiation goes (although i think this is a pretty interesting word to use), lots of people turn commissioning art or writing stories of their sona into a hobby, and love stroking their ego by sharing them and talking about them with others. it's a very common ice-breaker topic for furries.

2. i feel like a lot of the boomer furries misunderstand what lingo is actually commonly used in the furry fandom today as opposed to what was used 10 years ago. for example, we don't really say yiff anymore, and usually call NSFW content what it is - NSFW, or y'know, porn. i've never seen "murr" used in the 4 years i've been in the fandom. i also rarely see any other faces besides uwu or 2-3 variations of :3 being used, besides from older people. we do use uwu a shit ton, though, mostly ironically. you'll also see a lot of people using cutesie spelling and vocabulary here (misspelling words to be cute, etc.), and lots of cutesie nicknames for things, such as animals (derg, pupper, birb, etc.), pawbs/beans (for paws), or even how people address eachother, like using the species someone is as a nickname for a friend. some people keysmash a lot to express different kinds of emotions. there's also more official fandom-related terms that actually serve a purpose though, like "popufur" (a popular furry, typically referring to furries with no actual talent and derived all their popularity from commissioning shit tons of art of their sona, having a fursuit and/or going to cons all the time. i'm not even using this description to spite them either, i just literally never see an artist or anyone who actually deserves the popularity be referred to as a popufur).

3. i'm not sure what my favorite thing about the furry community is off the top of my head. i used to be in this fandom for the social community, but after being burned again and again and again for the years i've been in it, i mostly involve myself in the art community, and the social stuff is kind of a side feature for me now. i'd describe the community as very, very samey. you'll rarely find people who're truly different from a diceroll of the same 5-10 personalities there are. there's the punished emo edgelord (me), the overtly obnoxious, the sociopaths, the snobby rich people, the sexual degenerates, etc. - you'll rarely find people who are down to earth and truly have their own personality that isn't synthetically made from furry culture. the community is also very cliquey, and it's extremely hard to make friends unless you get lucky with someone who's apart of a circle and thus, making more friends in that circle. some get the hang of it really quickly, while others remain friendless for years.

4. just as a precautionary, i've never been to a con or meetup, so what i'm about to say is entirely based on what i've heard from friends and my own outside observations. i've heard that cons can be pretty lonely and awkward unless you bring friends, for the reason being that furries aren't really as accepting as they appear to be online, and if you don't have friends to socialize with you'll likely spend the con alone. if you do bring a friend though, i've heard it can be a very fun time, as long as you don't let envy eat you up as everybody gives all the attention to the fursuiters/artists. i wouldn't know about the activities, besides fursuit dancing and the occasional fursuit parade i imagine the activities vary.

5. the furry fandom is VERY imaginative and creative, and i feel like with the countless hundreds and possibly thousands upon thousands of people out there bringing their own aesthetics into their characters and into their art, stories and personalities, that the aesthetic of the fandom can't be defined by one definition, and i feel like there's room for a little bit of everything, and you'll be able to find what you're looking for if you look hard enough. whether it's a certain type of art style, or a certain type of friend you're looking to make. think of it as each person having their own piece of the fandom as a putty or clay, and they're constantly molding it into their own thing, using their personalities and interests to do it. furries are not a hivemind that are into all the same things and styles just because we share a fandom together. we all have our own quirks and niches. you'll very rarely find any 2 or 3 furries with a mirrored word-for-word answer when you ask them what a furry is or what the fandom is about.
 

Ziggy Schlacht

Hasn't figured out this "straight" business
I can offer something new on #5

A lot has been covered ad nauseum, but I've been around for a while and the big change I've seen is the entire demise of the "nazi fur" aesthetic. Or rather, not demise, I guess, but it's not nearly as prominant. There was at one point a whole subculture of furries who maintained the nazi look, if not the attitudes, in their characters. Black military uniforms, red arm bands with paws instead of swastikas, etc. And you can debate if this was a lie or not, but I read about a guy who maintained the look "because it was cool" and was entirely unaware of the connotations. He was Indian, if I remember correctly, so I guess that might-sorta-explain it?
 

MCtheBeardie

Queen of Laziness
Ooo, I can add my own take to this! This looks fun, and I think I have a more unique perspective.

1) How does one discover their fursona? What forms of initiation take place when you do figure it out?
Well, this really depends on the person. Some people have one sona (a la me as an example), or some people have multiple. It's mostly seen as something that's just a fun thing to do, but I know a lot of furries are very attached to their sonas, and have a lot of personal meaning assigned to them (Again, I fall under that example).

As for any form of 'initiation', no such thing exists. It's just a community that came together under one common interest- a love of animals with human characteristics! Using the word 'initiation' makes it sound like a cult, lol. At least, to me, that sounds a bit silly.

2) What are some examples of language or lingo that is exclusive to the Furry community?
I feel like other people have already covered this well enough, so I don't feel like I have to add much more in this regard. But, as many people said, furry lingo usually falls under the cutsie or NSFW category.

3) What is your favorite thing about being apart of the Furry community? How would you describe the community? How long have you been a member? How has it changed?
Oh, I have a lot to say about this! My favorite thing about being in this community is, by far, the artistic side of the community. I haven't run into any of the shortcomings of the social aspect of the community, at least not to the point where it harms my view on the people who make up the furry fandom. Maybe I just know how to pick and choose my battles, most of the people I meet are very pleasant. But, I digress- the art community definitely mitigates any of the social shortcomings for me. The art produced by this fandom is phenomenal- everything from drawn works to sculpture, anything that involves sewing such as plush work and fursuits- it's just absolutely stunning! The fursuits and social events are definitely the main draw for me, as you just get involved in a cuddly pile of awkward introverts with outstanding talents. Like me!

As for how I describe the community, it goes as follows. You have your deviants- be it the overly political side, the NSFW addicts, the generally not pleasant individuals- but, for the most part, this community is very fun! At least, in my experience. Being able to share your artistic works and provide them for people, on top of the friendly and relatable conversations I seem to find on a daily basis, this community is just a very fun place to be when you want to hang out with friends and have a fun time. TL;DR- I think the furry community is one of the most friendly communities out there!

As for how long I've been around, I've been in the fandom for a full year now. Still fairly new, but not inexperienced. I haven't really been here to see any major changes in the fandom, but from what I've heard, the fandom is actually expanding quite a bit since the internet became a thing. More and more people are slowly being exposed to the good aspects of the fandom, and though the stigma surrounding the fandom is still very real, I definitely don't think the hate is being taken as seriously anymore. It's just people repeating the same old stereotypes, over and over again like a broken record. Not that the hate directed at the fandom isn't still unfair, I just think people are slowly getting tired of the same old talking points.

4) What are Furry meetups or conventions like? What is the atmosphere? What are the activities and events? How do fellow furries interact with each other?
Well, I've actually been to both, funnily enough! Fur meets tend to be smaller gatherings of furries conducted in regular social environments- like movie theaters, and restaurants! Some places even allow fursuiters to wear their suits, which is really awesome! All we do at fur meets is just chat, and have fun while being around people with similar interests. From what I understand, though, fur meets can be hard to find outside of very urban areas. I had to take a very stressful 3 hour drive to and from my meets, so I can't go all the time, sadly. The atmosphere is generally friendly, so I enjoyed it!

I went to my first con on my own a couple of months ago, before all of this pandemic stuff hit. I thought that was really fun, too! I introduced myself to the group of furries at the meet beforehand, so I already had a little circle that I started to warm up to when I went there. A furry convention is not that much different than fur meets, it's just on a larger scale where you can attend event panels and buy merchandise from other members of the fandom! You also have the opportunity to dress up in suit, I myself bringing my nice big lizard tail to the convention. The atmosphere is very energetic and fun, and carries the same friendliness the fandom is known for!

Outside of these two events, us furries usually use the internet to interact with each other, more often than not. You'll usually find them on forums like this, but I know Telegram and Discord is very popular in the fandom, too.

5) What describes the Furry aesthetic? How has it evolved?
Well, the furry aesthetic is very simple. It's all based around anthropomorphic animals, or animals with human characteristics. Outside of a few theme trends, this aesthetic has generally remained the same. But, everybody brings something unique to the table, that's why the artistic community is so fun to watch! There's always something new and inventive going on, in that regard.
 

Trevorbluesquirrel

Well-Known Member
1) How does one discover their fursona? What forms of initiation take place when you do figure it out?

Your favorite animal, or 1 that matches your personality, your hobbies, interests, and like that!

2) What are some examples of language or lingo that is exclusive to the Furry community?

LEGALIZE AWOO!!! YOU'RE GONNA START A HOWL!!! SCRITCH MY BELLY!!!

3) What is your favorite thing about being apart of the Furry community? How would you describe the community? How long have you been a member? How has it changed?

Porn, creative, 2015, COVID really changed everything!!!

4) What are Furry meetups or conventions like? What is the atmosphere? What are the activities and events? How do fellow furries interact with each other?

Friendly, fun and loud, art stuff, fursuit stuff, we hug, scritch, yiff, and hold paws!

5) What describes the Furry aesthetic? How has it evolved?

We're just 2 legged critters, fursuits have gotten better looking in quality!
 
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