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furry

Fans of anthropomorphic animals, and their community.

Review: 'Furry Nation' by Joe Strike

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'Furry Nation' cover If you do not know where you come from, then you don't know where you are, and if you don't know where you are, then you don't know where you're going. And if you don't know where you're going, you're probably going wrong.
—Terry Pratchett

I am probably not wrong in my belief that many furs have little idea of how the fandom got started. The furry fandom is based around the appreciation of, and I'll simplify here, anthropomorphic characters. Furs find their way here through that appreciation and are able to join in immediately. This is not a bad thing but it is sad that many of us are unaware of our shared history. As we learned above, if we don't know where we come from then we are lost.

It's not that there has been no attempt to describe the origins of the furry fandom; aside from the crowdsourced wikis (e.g. WikiFur), we had Fred Patten's Retrospective: An Illustrated Chronology of Furry Fandom, 1966–1996 and Perri Rhoades' The Furry History Project. The first is not necessarily in the most easy to use form and both of the latter entries are chronological lists of major influences. Joe Strike's book departs from this format employing a mix of personal anecdotes, extensive research and several interviews with prominent furs to build a far more flowing, narrative history of the furry fandom.

2017 Ursa Major Awards vote is now open

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The Ursa Majors Awards logo. The 2017 Ursa Major Awards vote has been opened! Send them your e-mail address, and you can vote for any of the nominations in 12 categories. Voting closes on Saturday, March 31. Please pass on this annoucement if you're on a furry message forum or social media site!

The winners will be announced at FurDU 2018 (May 4-6). And if you have the time to vote, why not also suggest furry creations for the 2018 Recommended Anthropomorphics List?

This year's nominees are...

The rise of the furry visual novel

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Get a writer, an artist, a musician, and a programmer in the same room and what can you make? Well a video game, obviously. However, you need to remember you only have one of each, so you’re not going to be making the next Skyrim in your lifetime. So what do you do? Well, use the visual medium of gaming to tell the story you want to tell in a slightly more interactive way. You’re now on your way to creating a visual novel.

While most visual novels could barely qualify as games to some, these literary heavy games are the go to for the more well-read, and perhaps more ‘casual’ gamer, that doesn’t mind letting the words immerse them in their worlds.

The genre has already had notoriety in Japan for awhile, but just like the anime craze heading to the West in the 1990s, this storytelling medium is starting to get recognition in other parts of the world. Digital platforms, such as Steam, are allowing for niche games to find a market where one may not have existed before. And if furries know anything, for better or worse, is what happens when niches connect by wire (or wireless these day).

Our fandom, in the past couple of years, has shown that it too has caught onto the rising genre and has jumped in with both paws, and for the lack of a better term— are leaving their mark upon it.
Visnovs_0.jpg

Furry performers TiHusky and ShiaCabbit routed from home by devastating fire

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This Tuesday, ShiaCabbit, a member of the comedy skit group DifFURently that is known for performances on YouTube, tweeted that he had been aroused early in the morning by a fire that had consumed a neighboring complex. He took a recording of the inferno after having been evacuated from their own building.

Pennsylvania fur LupineFox found not guilty of child rape

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Kenneth Fenske / LupineFox Kenneth C. Fenske, better known in furry circles as LupineFox, has been found not guilty by a jury in a Bucks County court of sexual abuse charges which were widely reported in local media, and linked to the arrest of seven other suspects during 2016 and 2017.

The four day trial concluded after two hours of jury deliberations. LupineFox proclaimed his innocence throughout; unlike David R. Parker (RebelWolf), who plead guilty last August to federal child sex trafficking of the boy concerned, and assisted the prosecution. The defence focused on undermining the 16-year-old boy's testimony, calling it "a train wreck" and claiming that the ultimate goal was a payout in civil court.

Highlighted was the boy's recollection of Fenske taking off a fox costume (with "full long sleeves and pants, a zipper in the back, paw gloves, and a fox head with pointy ears") before the alleged rape – said to have occurred when he was 8, while attending furmeets at Fenske's house dressed as "Tony the Tiger". The builder of LupineFox's fox fursuit Renoir said it was made in 2015.

Fur Affinity administrator resigns amid hate group policy controversy

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quoting_mungo, who has moderated multiple furry websites and would have been on Fur Affinity's administrative team for five years on January 27, 2018, resigned today, she announced in a Fur Affinity journal entry. Apparently originally aiming to resign mid-January or February, it appears decisions for and reactions to Fur Affinity's new policy regarding hate groups encouraged her to cut that time short.

Discussed briefly here on Flayrah previously, Fur Affinity user Pokefound uploaded a $15 commission they'd drawn, depicting a My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic-styled character, wearing a swastika armband and SS collar tab, performing a Nazi salute against a background of Nazi Germany swastika flags. Believing it to be a violation of the hate group policy, another user reported it via Fur Affinity's trouble ticket system.

Freedomain 'Cult' leader to furry, "Leave your otter family."

Your rating: None Average: 2.3 (10 votes)

A recent video has popped up on Youtube and was sent to me by a corgi friend of mine. Apparently someone by the name of Stefan Molyneux had interviewed a furry in a video named: The Shocking Furry Fandom Conversation. Yes, Really!. Given the thumbnail containing the mugs of the leaders of the Furry Raiders I thought this person was interviewing them, but as it turns out the content of the video didn’t seem to have anything to do with the controversial alt-furry group.

Or at least that is what I thought coming away from the video. As I did more investigation into this Mr. Molyneux and the methods in which he is infamous I started to come to a bit of a more darker conclusions and questioning the intent of the video. Could this seemingly innocent interview with a random YouTuber actually be a propaganda piece crafted to fulfill as a recruitment tool aimed at furries? A way to take aim at those in the furry fandom and have them join the Freedomain fandom, a group which seems to have been noted as having cult-like qualities by some press releases?

Well I don’t know about all that. In fact, the reason I put the word cult in the headline is simply because Stephan put the word sex next to furry on his video’s thumbnail. And like me seeing those two words together for the purpose of click-bait made me eye-roll, I’m sure seeing his organization being called a cult all the time earns similar expression from Mr. Molyneux. Also, inquiring to Patch, he seemed to indicate that Leon was an actual person and the conversation was legitimate. So, with that in mind, I gave it a second watch and highlighted items of interest, both good and bad in the conversation.

Book News: 'Skeleton Crew' by Gre7g Luterman - Now bigger and better

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A mammalian humanoid stands defiantly in the hand of a giant reptilian creature.Gre7g Luterman self-published his furry science-fiction novel Skeleton Crew though Amazon's CreateSpace in August 2014. The cover art was designed by his wife, H. Kyoht Luterman, and inside were over a dozen full-page illustrations, mostly by Rick Griffin. It got excellent reviews. It's now been picked up and re-published in a new, expanded edition by Thurston Howl Publications, with a new cover by Rick Griffin (seen here, to the right) and new illustrations.

The backstory to Skeleton Crew is that four centuries earlier, the giant Krakun race came to the primitive planet of Gerootec and offered to hire thousands of the over-populated Geroo as their starship crews. The Geroo who went into space (and their descendants) would never see Gerootec again, but they would live in luxury compared to the backward conditions on their homeworld.

Furry gamer, SonicFox, takes home Injustice 2 grand final purse

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SonicFox_0.jpgIn comparison to many forms of media, furry as a fandom as a concept is relatively young. Likewise, in the world of competitive sports, the once fledgling video game sports community is witnessing a major growth in popularity. Over the weekend of September 16th, these two world eclipsed as a furry by the name of SonicFox took the grand prize in the Injustice 2 Pro Series tournament: $120,000. You could get a very nice fursuit with that kinda scratch, or you know, college or mortgage money if you want to be responsible adult I suppose.

However, this isn’t a Cinderella story coming out of nowhere, SonicFox is a record holder in Guinness for his many Injustice tournament wins. His adapt and flexible style in the fighting game genre is well respected.

But in case you missed the blue furry fury outfoxing his competition, you can watch the full event at Twitch. The grand final starts at the 8 hour and 48 minute mark.

Free speech and why it matters to the furry fandom

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What is free speech?

Of the many rights which are available to us, none is as important as free speech. However, a combination of factors including the high-profile activities of the alt-right in the US, resurgence of right-wing parties across Europe, emergence of various special interest and rights groups and the ease and speed at which news, ideas and, especially, outrage can spread over the internet have led some to question its necessity.

The most concerning statements that I've seen in the furry fandom have been those saying that certain people should not be allowed to speak and should be banned from websites and conventions for holding their views and the idea that it is okay to assault people who hold certain views. In the light of this, I feel it is necessary to explain what free speech is and isn't, why it is important and try to highlight some of the ways in which it directly impacts the furry fandom.

I will start with the Wikipedia article on free speech which describes it thus:

Freedom of speech is the right to articulate one's opinions and ideas without fear of government retaliation or censorship, or societal sanction.

Further down in the article it breaks freedom of speech into three discrete aspects.

1. the right to seek information and ideas;
2. the right to receive information and ideas;
3. the right to impart information and ideas

In some cases these will be limited due to laws regarding privacy or similar rules but such cases will not be considered here as those limitations generally do not affect free speech in the way that it applies to the furry fandom vis-à-vis the expression of alt-right ideas.

'Alt-Furry' suffers blowback after Alt-Right rally leads to death of citizen

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Deo in the driving seat On August 12, during a "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, a car drove into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing 32-year old Heather Heyer and injuring 19 others. James Alex Fields, Jr., who some linked to a local white nationalist organization, has been charged with second degree murder in relation to the event. On the 14th, VoIP messaging application Discord announced they had deleted AltRight.com's server, and others, citing TOS violations and promising to "take action against white supremacy, nazi ideology, and all forms of hate".

Discord closed, content leaked

The same day, members of the furry community began reporting the "AltFurry" Discord server, an Alt-Right furry community who are associated with Califur's recent security issues. Before the rally, the server had announced on Twitter that members of theirs would be attending. Following a tip about a Dogpatch Press article linking the group (and member TheBigKK) to the Charlottesville rally, people sent in messages from leaked logs of the chat revealing TOS violations, and the server was closed, as well as a second "back-up" server.

ITV's 'Good Morning' hosts three UK fursuiters

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Ani, Ed and Dexy on 'This Morning', with teapot. Three UK fursuiters appeared in a five-minute segment on today's episode of ITV's talk show This Morning, available on-demand until next Monday [segment starts at 01:03:15].

The trio - Ani Boxer, Ed the Poodle, and Dexy the Artic Fox - were interviewed by hosts Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford on various topics.

[Transcript follows. Segment on YouTube - LondonFurs backup copy.]

Furry fanzines, comics and furry history

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The cover of Huzzah number 48, an APA from 2002, showing a rabbit in the woods with a bow and arrow.With $40 that I sent to a collector, I dove into the interesting pool of furry fanzines. Anyone can publish furry art and comics online these days, but back when the Internet was more BBS than WWW, it seems like any artist who wanted to get their name out there did a fanzine. There are an incredible number of them, and that's why in my opinion it's impossible to list them all. I know some have tried and failed.

"Bestiary", "Scrap", "Karno's Klassics", "Furplay" and "PentMouse" are just a very small number of what was out there. The quality of the art ranges widely, and so far I've come across more than one comic that makes absolutely no sense at all. But those are exceptions; most of what I've seen has been quite good.

For the most part, furry fanzines were published with anywhere between 8 to 50 pages. They're a really interesting view of the early days of the fandom. One thing I noticed - the style of art hasn't changed that much. But what has definitely changed is how furry fans have viewed their fandom.

New Zealand researcher probes furry mental health impact

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New Zealand Furry research poster From time to time, furries face mental health problems. But does fandom involvement hurt - as professionals sometimes suggest - or help? One man aims to find out.

This research is seeking to investigate how members of the furry community cope with stressors and mental health issues and whether being a member of the furry community can be a protective factor against stress. We also want to investigate how a person’s fursona/furry identity and their actual identity interact and any differences/similarities between them.

The research is being conducted by Moses Simpson, a Master's student at the University of Waikato.

While questions about fursonas are included, any resulting discussions are to be limited to general trends due to concern over identifiability. The survey should take less than an hour. As a bonus, participants (16+ only) may enter a drawing for one of three US$25 Amazon vouchers.

Preceding research: Survey suggests furries 'think differently', but aren't crazy (by the ARP).