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RANT: Stop oversexualizing your fursonas; treat them like characters.

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dragonofdestiny

Thousand-faced dragoness
This one has been sitting in my mind for some time now, and after some consideration I decided to share my thoughts. It'll go on for a second, but don't be too concerned.



I have to give the spotlight to the problem of pornography and its prevalence within the furry community. Known to everyone, there's no need to discuss how this trend makes our (very talented) subculture look disgusting and unappealing to normal people, along with the effect it has on younger viewers - all of this has been covered many times already.

This problem is, indeed, something that would be very difficult to fix, requiring a change of heart of an entire unison of furries to have any positive impact. What I will touch upon, however, can do just about anyone-


-Anyone who one day sat down and decided to take it upon themselves to create a character to call their own: a piece of their own mind, their interests, loves and hates; an artistic embodiment of themselves. Whether it was for a story, a piece of art, to honour someone, as respect of the person they will never be or simply out of boredom - the sheer possibilities of creating someone new, piece-by-piece, are endless.

Think of the last book, or any piece of poetry, that you had invested yourself in. Think of the character, that one gem unique to you, the only character out of the abundance of faces that made you feel. Maybe it made you laugh? Cry? Sit down and ponder about yourself, the world you live in? A character you would love to meet in person, and spend many cheerful moments with? That is this power.

...and you would be disappointed to notice just how much of it goes to waste trying to make characters look. Many celebrity-lookalikes of furry characters are famous and well-known thanks to their visual appearance and abundant sexual art. And what do you gain from it? Sure, the visual and sexual excitement will make you feel again, but for how long? Masturbation, and this kind of entertainment, has never known to be fulfilling, has it? You know its feeling of emptiness; it does not help anything.


Instead, imagine converting all the hours of making your character "hot" into making them deep. I don't like this term either, but you know what I mean: giving them a backstory, in-depth emotions and their behaviour, maybe other characters related to them? Hell, create them an entire world of their own - who can stop you?

Simply sit down and think of the lack of respect for such creations, the love they never get. Why, you don't even have to treat them as figments of your imagination - how about seeing them as they would be a human? Every human, even the greyest, most generic face has something to tell, some piece of their past to share, their childhood, what made them them. Why should characters be looked down upon as just another shallow face? It does not help anything.


Instead, an inspiring character can change someone's life. Back then, the realisation of this fact made me shiver. Is it far-fetched? Maybe. Is it impossible? Never. It is only so when you give up on it or overlook it completely.

But if you're humble, or just not that sure of yourself, you don't instantly have to change someone's entire existence. Maybe simply make them happy? Give them something interesting, deep, entertaining to read; a character to look into further and further, their own rabbit-hole for the ones most interested in your creations. Touching the very own brain, heart, feelings of a person is undoubtedly more engaging than making someone feel aroused.


Even when ignoring others, building a character with your own heart is far from hurtful. It would let you see again, see value in such creations, create a bond with a piece of yourself. This deep, developing feeling is, actually, the exact opposite of the brief, sexual satisfaction everyone knows, but hates.

Now, don't call me some old, purism supremacist. I'm all behind keeping the sexual part in our community; as in others, it's an entire part of its own, deleting it would be counteractive. However, toning it down and letting productive actions take its place would help the community as it is.



Everyone should do their best to develop as people, as an unison of a subculture that has deep roots and equally massive potential.

I would just like to see the true face of this community that, at this pace, we are never going to see.


Thanks.
 

Foxy Emy

*Mischivious Noises*
Wow.... That was one heck of a wall of text there. I am afraid this part of your rant got a little lost in everything else so I just want to point it out for all the skimmers:

Now, don't call me some old, purism supremacist. I'm all behind keeping the sexual part in our community; as in others, it's an entire part of its own, deleting it would be counteractive. However, toning it down and letting productive actions take its place would help the community as it is.

By, the by, before ranting about sexualization on FAF, try to get to know the members and their characters first. You might be surprised by how well developed some of the characters on this forum are... :D
 

LeFay

Professional meme inspector
I just say it's you character. Do what you want with it but don't get mad when outsiders call us fetishists and degenerates. You don't get to have it both ways, but it's also no ones job to put out a public image of the fandom.
The fandoms not a clubhouse, it's a group created by an assortment of cliches of people that come to the fandom for their own reasons and get out of it what they want. If you don't like seeing that content then use filters.

You make some alright points but at the end of the day it's up to the individual how they want their character to reflect to themselves and others and if thats NSFW then I mean it's their life bro.
 
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Bluefiremark II

Magic Blue Phoenix
Wow.... That was one heck of a wall of text there. I am afraid this part of your rant got a little lost in everything else so I just want to point it out for all the skimmers:



By, the by, before ranting about sexualization on FAF, try to get to know the members and their characters first. You might be surprised by how well developed some of the characters on this forum are... :D
Well developed- like mine!
 

Skittles

Queen of FaF. Empress of Fløøf.
Wow.... That was one heck of a wall of text there. I am afraid this part of your rant got a little lost in everything else so I just want to point it out for all the skimmers:



By, the by, before ranting about sexualization on FAF, try to get to know the members and their characters first. You might be surprised by how well developed some of the characters on this forum are... :D
Quite! Some of us are wholesome beings! I just want to be fløøfy and.. Maybe conquer the world. But it's for a good cause!
 

TyraWadman

The Brutally Honest Man-Child
While I do agree with the sentiment (I would love to see more story-related pics than not), it will be impossible.
Especially when you factor in those who are learning impaired or that humans continue to advertise with the ideology of 'sex sells' in general.

Edit: Yikes. Apparently people forgot this was a vent thread. Not a personal attack. I never once said people with mental disabilities don't deserve porn or anything silly like that, but rather, good luck arguing your case with them. Hence why I said it would be impossible to sway an entire community.
 
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D

Deleted member 111470

Guest
Stop oversexualizing your fursonas; treat them like characters.

Or else what? How about you stop generalizing and putting everyone under the same label. What makes you think that everyone who has nsfw art of their characters is a shallow porn-addicted freak who's only doing this to gain 5 seconds of bliss? How often do you interact with people who have predominately NSFW art of their sonas?

You are so convinced that a character who is depicted in sexual themes cannot have a meaningful backstory and development. You are wrong.
 

KD142000

Leather-clad Lobo
This one has been sitting in my mind for some time now, and after some consideration I decided to share my thoughts. It'll go on for a second, but don't be too concerned.



I have to give the spotlight to the problem of pornography and its prevalence within the furry community. Known to everyone, there's no need to discuss how this trend makes our (very talented) subculture look disgusting and unappealing to normal people, along with the effect it has on younger viewers - all of this has been covered many times already.

This problem is, indeed, something that would be very difficult to fix, requiring a change of heart of an entire unison of furries to have any positive impact. What I will touch upon, however, can do just about anyone-


-Anyone who one day sat down and decided to take it upon themselves to create a character to call their own: a piece of their own mind, their interests, loves and hates; an artistic embodiment of themselves. Whether it was for a story, a piece of art, to honour someone, as respect of the person they will never be or simply out of boredom - the sheer possibilities of creating someone new, piece-by-piece, are endless.
Because it's a long wall of text, I cut it down.

Let me start by saying that having NSFW art doesn't mean you oversexualise your character. If you want to get art of your character in a sexual manner, then go right ahead. I couldn't care less. Only if it's cub or bestiality is it unacceptable in my view. Everything else...I don't care.

Your point, I think, is that you want the whole community to stop getting NSFW art to show 'we're not disgusting'. Well...tough shit. I know very well that it's not just the sexual side of the fandom that turns people off us. So, even if we did stop posting NSFW art, I don't think it'd make a blind bit of difference.

The rules state that we have to mark adult content as adult in order to stop minors from seeing it. And, by and large, most people do that. I think this is fair for both minors and adult members.

My character, even if I have NSFW art of him, is still a character. I maintain that it's up to you what your character is and what they do. If someone wants to make a character just for porn, it's their own choice and they'll deal with whatever comes their way.

Also, I've seen some people with predominantly NSFW art have characters that are 'deep' and 'developed'. No offence, but people who want to masturbate over someone's character will do it anyway, regardless of whether there's porn of them or not.
 

Skittles

Queen of FaF. Empress of Fløøf.
Because it's a long wall of text, I cut it down.

Let me start by saying that having NSFW art doesn't mean you oversexualise your character. If you want to get art of your character in a sexual manner, then go right ahead. I couldn't care less. Only if it's cub or bestiality is it unacceptable in my view. Everything else...I don't care.

Your point, I think, is that you want the whole community to stop getting NSFW art to show 'we're not disgusting'. Well...tough shit. I know very well that it's not just the sexual side of the fandom that turns people off us. So, even if we did stop posting NSFW art, I don't think it'd make a blind bit of difference.

The rules state that we have to mark adult content as adult in order to stop minors from seeing it. And, by and large, most people do that. I think this is fair for both minors and adult members.

My character, even if I have NSFW art of him, is still a character. I maintain that it's up to you what your character is and what they do. If someone wants to make a character just for porn, it's their own choice and they'll deal with whatever comes their way.

Also, I've seen some people with predominantly NSFW art have characters that are 'deep' and 'developed'. No offence, but people who want to masturbate over someone's character will do it anyway, regardless of whether there's porn of them or not.
I know of one who has an amazingly intricate story but is borderline sexual. Really nice person I have found from a brief convo.
 

BlackDragonAJ89

Bumbling Everyman
Also, I've seen some people with predominantly NSFW art have characters that are 'deep' and 'developed'. No offence, but people who want to masturbate over someone's character will do it anyway, regardless of whether there's porn of them or not.

Not only that, but do some people even really care for the "deep and meaningful" stuff about characters in the first place? Sometimes a character who can be summed up in one or two paragraphs is far more interesting than a character who has a 10 page backstory.
 

KD142000

Leather-clad Lobo
Not only that, but do some people even really care for the "deep and meaningful" stuff about characters in the first place? Sometimes a character who can be summed up in one or two paragraphs is far more interesting than a character who has a 10 page backstory.
Yeah, it hinges on personal preference, really. I can admire 'shallow' and 'deep' characters, for lack of better words. And sometimes their owners are really lovely to interact with.

Well said.

I know of one who has an amazingly intricate story but is borderline sexual. Really nice person I have found from a brief convo.
I am often impressed by people's character and world-building in this fandom. And even if it's not very intricate, it can still be appreciated just the same.
 

quoting_mungo

Well-Known Member
You have written your entire piece with a mind towards what you think the relationship between a person and their fursona should be. Not everyone sees the concept of a fursona the same way, and not everyone relates to their own fursona in the same way.

My fursona will never be a “well-developed character,” because that’s not the function she serves for me. She is not a character in the storytelling sense at all. Neither is my male sona. They’re just furry window dressing on me-the-person. To me the idea of giving my fursona a backstory is creepy as fuck - I am not Baron fucking Münchhausen, and I’m not about to make up tall tales about my furry self-representation’s childhood any more than I would about myself when speaking with other people in a non-furry context.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with giving your fursona a life and story of their own. There’s also nothing wrong with leaving it at “this is how I represent myself in furry art.” Or anything in between.

I do have what I refer to as “art characters,” which are relatively flat characters that I created for the purpose of sticking them in pictures. They have varying degrees of personality and history, but not very much, because that’s not the purpose they’re intended to serve. They literally exist to spare me the trouble of thinking up one-off characters for random art.

The foremost thing a character needs to do is serve its purpose. If its purpose is to be the subject matter of sketches/studies/self-indulgent art, it doesn’t need to be a very deep character. You have the option of developing them deeply if you wish, but it’s not strictly necessary. If its purpose is to be a major or significant part of the supporting cast in a narrative, it needs more development.
 

Skittles

Queen of FaF. Empress of Fløøf.
You have written your entire piece with a mind towards what you think the relationship between a person and their fursona should be. Not everyone sees the concept of a fursona the same way, and not everyone relates to their own fursona in the same way.

My fursona will never be a “well-developed character,” because that’s not the function she serves for me. She is not a character in the storytelling sense at all. Neither is my male sona. They’re just furry window dressing on me-the-person. To me the idea of giving my fursona a backstory is creepy as fuck - I am not Baron fucking Münchhausen, and I’m not about to make up tall tales about my furry self-representation’s childhood any more than I would about myself when speaking with other people in a non-furry context.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with giving your fursona a life and story of their own. There’s also nothing wrong with leaving it at “this is how I represent myself in furry art.” Or anything in between.

I do have what I refer to as “art characters,” which are relatively flat characters that I created for the purpose of sticking them in pictures. They have varying degrees of personality and history, but not very much, because that’s not the purpose they’re intended to serve. They literally exist to spare me the trouble of thinking up one-off characters for random art.

The foremost thing a character needs to do is serve its purpose. If its purpose is to be the subject matter of sketches/studies/self-indulgent art, it doesn’t need to be a very deep character. You have the option of developing them deeply if you wish, but it’s not strictly necessary. If its purpose is to be a major or significant part of the supporting cast in a narrative, it needs more development.
Yay! I am not the only one! I do enjoy backstories for people's sonas but I just.. Yeah Not for my own personal representation Sona. It does not make sense to me.
 

Punji

Vaskebjørn
Why can't an intricate well-designed character with a Tragic Backstory also just so happen to be super sexy? :p

I mean if we're going to create characters there's no reason to make them visually appalling most of the time.
 

BlackDragonAJ89

Bumbling Everyman
Another thing I forgot to point out about this in regards to writing "deep" characters that happen to be your personal avatar is that in many writing circles, this would be essentially creating a Mary Sue/Marty Sue. No writer of any kind worth their salt would ever want to actually write one of those.

In my case, having a powerful mystical creature who is used for my personal avatar to do things with some of my other characters, be used in RPs where anything can happen, and have sexy art of is all fine and dandy because he has no elaborate backstory or set place he exists in. However, if I were to try to use him in an actual story, it would be next to impossible because he's such an overpowered and overwhelming character that would render him a Sue in just about any setting.

Which really, IMO, a setting's often far more important at determining what the characters should be more than anything else.
 

Eli_the_Wolf23

Well-Known Member
Well I know that it can be a problem but I understand and thats why I like the safe side more than the nsfw side but dont censor it too much.
 

Sir Thaikard

GOTTA WRITE FAST.
Another thing I forgot to point out about this in regards to writing "deep" characters that happen to be your personal avatar is that in many writing circles, this would be essentially creating a Mary Sue/Marty Sue. No writer of any kind worth their salt would ever want to actually write one of those.

In my case, having a powerful mystical creature who is used for my personal avatar to do things with some of my other characters, be used in RPs where anything can happen, and have sexy art of is all fine and dandy because he has no elaborate backstory or set place he exists in. However, if I were to try to use him in an actual story, it would be next to impossible because he's such an overpowered and overwhelming character that would render him a Sue in just about any setting.

Which really, IMO, a setting's often far more important at determining what the characters should be more than anything else.

Hey man, if you pay me enough I'll write a fanfiction about how Furry Dumbledore seduces Hillary Clinton only to be foiled when a FurAffinity admin self-inserts themselves in to woo both of them.

I have no shame and I am not about to judge the requests of my clients.
 

Kit H. Ruppell

Exterminieren! Exterminieren!
I'm lonely and pent up. Of COURSE my fursona is going to be sexualized (not that it helps anything).
 

Raever

Chaotic Neutral Wreckage
I understand where you're coming from to a degree, but I think associating NSFW art with a lack of character depth is the bad way to go. While I agree that the amount of oversexualization is definitely one of the largest I've seen in any fandom, we are neither the first nor the last to do this. Groups such as cosplayers/otaku do it as well, it's just more accepted (read: overlooked) by the media than Furries/Fursuiters - which is a hot topic to spark a "laughable" or "negative" commentary. In the end, it's not anyone's job to stop doing what they enjoy, and if what they enjoy is NSFW art it's their right to involve themselves. My character has been one in the making for years, and I'm not even close to getting basic world design off the ground, yet I have dabbled in NSFW once or twice and NSFW biological information is out there for people to know. Both because I enjoy being thorough, and because I see nothing wrong with having a "hot" character also have a sense of depth to them - or a deep and meaningful character having a six pack. In the end, people will hone in on what they care about, and if all they want is an imaginary sex image to get out their kinks and sinful wishes well...that's part of the escapism that comes with the Furry community. Whether you embrace it or not, that's something you'll have to accept as fact.

A suggestion I'd make is to create an active and enthusiastic group of SFW artists with characters who you and others in the group would deem as "deep" and "meaningful" and just have fun creating stories and art together. It might come across elitist to those who enjoy NSFW art, but hey, as said prior - do what you want.

It's your choice.
 

lemonadevik

Lemonade Goblin
I think a main thing forgotten in this post is that for a lot of furries their fursona is THEM. A fursona isn't just a character they've written into a story but is actually them just in a different body. It's also very well known that a good handful of furries have issues with self-confidence and anxiety, so seeing a character representative of them in something NSFW could be a bit of a confidence booster. I mean, seeing what is practically you looking all sexy and stuff could bring the person extra self-confidence; like living vicariously through an anthro fox.

If seeing NSFW stuff makes you uncomfy then just don't look at it. The public and the normies will think whatever they want about us, no matter if we were all squeaky clean or not. Honestly, a big part of the fandom for me is not being like the public and just being myself.
 
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