Furry team raises over $34,000 for ALS foundation

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On November 10th, 2018 in Irvine, California furs came together in support of one of their own in his fight against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, frequently given the acronym ALS. They walked for a mile at Orange County Great Park to raise awareness and money for the foundation combating this debilitating disease. With Tony “Dogbomb” Barrett leading the team and matching donations, they successfully raised their goal of $34,000.

Fear of wolves in Germany highlights conservation issues and the future of our planet

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Flayrah_wolf.jpgThe wolf is by far the most popular fursona species but, as a recent opinion piece in Deutsche Welle pointed out, they are not universally loved. In Germany, like many places in Europe, wolves were driven to extinction and it was only in 2000, after approximately 150 years, that wild wolves were born in Germany once again. Many people, particularly farmers, are worried about wolf attacks on their livestock – echoing our previous reporting of wolves in France– while others are concerned about the risk to humans. But this conflict is about more than wolves; the conversations about wolves are intertwined with much larger issues.

Discussions around wolves show both the fear of the wild and the human desire to eliminate all danger while seeing themselves not only as superior to other animals but, to use the Biblical terminology, granted dominion over them. This is seen in sentiments that even question the right of other animals, such as wolves, to exist in "our" world.

"Wolves do not fit into our civilization any longer," she said, adding that her fear of wolves means she no longer enjoys walking in the countryside.

Over time, more and more evidence has accumulated that, due these attitudes, we are responsible for a widespread decline in animal populations and species that leave us with a dangerously low level of biodiversity. This is termed the sixth extinction.

Actor goes from Polkin' to Tokin'; faces legal trouble for his mascot parody

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Canada Weed Flag

If you live in Ontario, you probably haven't heard of Marc Scott - but you've probably seen him if you watched children's shows on TVOntario, the province's educational broadcaster (similar to PBS). He used to perform as the costumed character known as "Polkaroo", a polka-dotted kangaroo on the station's preschool TV series Polka-Dot Door from 1985 to 1993, and on later series such as Polka-Dot Shorts (1993-2001) and on Gisèle's Big Backyard (2001-2007).

His name has recently returned to the limelight - in a less than flattering way - after he attracted the attention of his former employer. He's received a cease-and-desist order and might face a potential lawsuit for creating and wearing an "unauthorized parody" of Polkaroo, named "Tokaroo", a red-eyed and brown-furred marijuana-smoking marsupial he created in celebration of Canada legalizing Marijuana on October 17, 2018.

Newsbytes archive for October 2018

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Contributors this month include 2cross2affliction, dronon, earthfurst, Fred, Patch Packrat, Rakuen Growlithe, and Sonious.

Furries assist authorities, leads to charges and arrest of Levi "SnakeThing" Simmons

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In late September, the furry world was rocked by a leak of telegram chat-logs that revealed an organization of those that practiced extreme forms of animal abuse in the real world. On October 25th, 2018, police in Oregon have made the first arrest of a member of this zoosadist ring, Levi “SnakeThing” Simmons. They have been initially charged with sexual assault of an animal, animal abuse in the first degree, and animal neglect in the first degree.

Levi, who went by several pseudonyms in the furry community including 'Nelizar', became infamous soon after this leak. The logs were released to the public by a fellow zoophile who felt their peers had gone too far in their crueler abusive behavior towards animals. While SnakeThing was quickly overshadowed by a more famous individual caught within the ring, furry Youtuber Kero the Wolf, most of the evidence tied to Levi. This was because the leak was centered around his account that the whistle-blower had gained access to and downloaded the data from. It was Levi's own logs that was eventually shared with the internet.

Update 11/1: Furvengers noted on Tuesday 10/30, that Mr. Simmons was released from prison due to apparent statue of limitations on charges and evidence presented at this time. State charges have been revoked.

Faux masculinity products seller posing as reporter confused by concept of "marketing" at furry

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What started with a well intentioned creative spark by a furry to take a mass produced WalMart animal costume product and teach young ones how to express themselves in designs of their own creation turned into an unfortunate swarm of saltiness and virtue signaling by InfoWar fans.

The doors to this interaction was open when WalMart’s official twitter account responded to a furry expressing their desire to do a video on modding of their Maskimal products. Once the positive interaction of a corporation with the furs was made, the Joneses stepped in to voice their offense at the situation.

Tony the Tiger's silent Twitter exodus blamed on furries, but advertising laws more probable cause

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Tony the Tiger has fled Twitter, and furries are to blame. At least that is how the story is told on Huffington Post’s Ashley Feinberg in her article about the mascot’s disappearence from social media. It talks about the cereal mascot’s unfortunate run in with some very thirsty furry fans, who made it a habit of bogging his social media responses with sexual innuendo and sometimes more blatant passes. Back when this started to occur, the cereal mascot began to ban furries at random, even if they were not engaging in the activity of coming onto the fiction character.

When this made the news rounds back in early 2016 it was known as “#TonyTigerGate”, in honor of the internet’s tendency of putting the gate suffix on anything even the slightest bit controversial that most normal people don’t actually care about. It would be overly dismissive to claim that it wasn’t a big topic of discussion in the fandom about public decorum and our relationships with corporations back when it occurred.

But in regards to this recent turn of events, Ashley uses her article to claim that Tony the Tiger’s account was replaced by the less furry account called simply Frosted Flakes in order to douse the horny furries in cold milk. But, further investigation reveals a far more intriguing story. One of a mascot caught in an international assassination plot against his very life. Not a story of a company’s combat against the internet’s lusts, but one of a government’s fight against glutton of the youths of their respective nations and the mascots used to stimulate that hunger.

Newsbytes archive for September 2018

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Sorry if things have been a bit quiet; real life sometimes keeps us busy! Contributors in September included 2cross2affliction, dronon, earthfurst, Equivamp, Fred, GreenReaper, and Sonious, with a shout-out from JoeStrike.

Season 6 teaser image shows 'Fortnite' just got a lot furrier

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Season 6 of the popular "Battle Royale" shooter Fortnite is launching September 25, this Thursday, and for the second season in a row, the first teaser image released by Epic Games features a new character wearing an animal mask, in this case, a Deadmau5-esque DJ wearing a llama mask, after the Season 5 teaser featured a kabuki-inspired fox mask teaser.

The next Season 6 teaser image featured a cowgirl (the "Wild West" type of cowgirl, not the furry type, unfortunately), but it wasn't until the third and final teaser image, that things got really furry with an apparent werewolf character featured, seen above.

Update: The llama DJ is named DJ Yonder and is the tier 1 reward for the Season 6 Battle Pass; the werewolf is named Dire and is the tier 100 reward, and features further unlockable styles (he is unlocked as a human but most players will already have enough experience points reaching tier 100 to unlock his werewolf form when he is unlocked). Season 6 is also introducing Pets that players can carry on their back to the game; a dog, chameleon and baby dragon will all be unlockable in the pass.

BoJack Horseman and the Cycle of Abuse

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Bojack_0.jpgSo last weekend I sat down and remembered that BoJack season 5 had released onto Netflix. Being relatively new to the platform I thought that meant one episode was released and would have slow releases over time. No, apparently it means that all the episodes are released and you can watch them all.

One or two episodes wouldn’t hurt, I noted on Saturday. By the time Sunday rolled around I had gone through the entire season and was a bit drained, but still the interactions and story arcs between the characters had kept me hooked and dragged me through the entire bender. I hadn’t recorded my weekly show so I decided to take the week off and not record.

I don’t have a problem, really.

But, the show isn’t for everyone. It uses comedy as a pointed look at the worst parts of how things are for those caught within a perpetual cycle of self-inflicted wounds brought on by less than optimal decision making. If you prefer your comedy with a higher proportion toward the happy face, and less toward the tragic and woeful one, then the show may not be for you. For those folks I’d recommend Buddy Thunderstruck if you haven’t seen that one before.

However, for those who like a cerebral comedy with flawed characters in a flawed world it is well worth the watch. For those of you who have watched it, or if you don’t plan on watching it so you don’t mind spoilers, please continue to read the rest of the article for my thoughts about the fifth season. But be wary, like the show the way I am reviewing this may get a bit ‘too real’ near the end.

Drug addiction takes its toll in furry fandom

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To many furs in the world, young and old, the fandom and the content it produces can be a form of escape. A way to engage in a fantasy world with conjured characters. It works as a means to forget the menial and divisive day to day events. It keeps them sane in a world that can lose it in the spur of a moment.

Drugs in which are utilized recreationally also provide such escapes for some. Through stimulation or suppression of the senses, the user can achieve a state of mind that can help them take an edge off the sharp protrusions in life.

However, just because both tools seem to be a means to the same end, it does not mean that these worlds do not overlap. In many circles in the fandom the usage of these substances can be seen as revered, one such group that is a famous example call themselves the “Baked Furs” are well known for their pro-marijuana stances and usage.

Unfortunately, as drug culture has continued to grow along with the growth of the fandom itself, the dark side of these habits is becoming far more prevalent. A recent death of one furry has pushed the conversation to one that can no longer be ignored by the community. Today we go these examples of substance abuse in the fandom, and the impacts that it has had.

Con Report: Eurofurence 24: Aviators – Conquer the Sky

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Eurofurence 24 ran from 22 August to 26 August this year. It was the biggest one so far and a great opportunity to meet friends from all over and enjoy oneself. There were several panels, discussions and events which are worth noting. However, conventions are very personal experiences, so while I will focus on some larger themes, your own con experiences may vary. I have previously reported on Eurofurence 21 and Eurofurence 23.

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Newsbytes archive for August 2018

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Contributors this month include 2cross2affliction, dronon, Fred, GreenReaper, Rakuen Growlithe, Sonious, and TyphonDog.

DenFur shatters first year con record at over 2,000 attendees

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The fandom continues to show strong growth on the last weekend of August 2018. A weekend in which 5 furry conventions took place: Fur Affinity: United, Eurofurence, Camp Feral!, Indyfurcon, and DenFur. Of them the inaugural gathering in the state of Colorado has turned heads as it had shattered the first year attendance record of a furry convention at 2,086.

The first year attendance record was previously held by FurryPinas, a convention in the Philippines at 1,542 attendees, which acquired it just this last May making this year a strong startup for furry gatherings in general. Other conventions also had solid growth in attendance rates. Fur Affinity: United showing its first growth since their move out of the state of New Jersey. The number breakdowns for last weekend's cons can be seen below:

Convention

2017 Attendance

2018 Attendance

% Increase

Charity

Camp Feral!

220

[Unknown]

[Unknown]

[Unknown]

DenFur

N/A

2,086

N/A

$15,000

Eurofurence

2,804

2,908

3.7%

$47,945.07

FurAffinity:United

515

528

2.5%

$2,869

IndyFurCon

1,214

1,412

16.3%

$17,616.79

TOTAL

4,753

6,934 + [Feral]

45.88%+

$83,430.86

Update 6/29: Story indicated previous record holder was Biggest Little Fur Con, was corrected to be FurryPinas. -Cirrus credited for correction.

Harbouring Classism: Australian convention chair highlights elitism in furry fandom

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Late last year, Nightf0x, an individual who I have done furry panels about journalism and non-fiction writing, had his first furry piece published by DogPatchPress. Prior to his publication he had spoken with me about doing a review and offering advice on it. In this piece he discussed his feelings of a furry’s class and how that weighed more at a larger convention like Anthrocon where he didn’t feel such a thing at his more local gathering of Anthro Weekend Utah which has an attendance around 10% the size of the Pittsburgh gathering.

My main critique with this piece was that I had noted while he was speaking from his experience between the environments of smaller conventions against larger ones, it did not highlight, nor go into depth, why he felt that the larger one had more classism in it. There weren’t any major examples on classist behavior observed which would have sold the concept better, but instead all the article did in the end is note that it existed.

Little could have anyone suspected that in the last weekend of July, a convention from Syndey, Australia would provide us with a new neologism that would elicit more groans and eyerolls than even the infamous words of “yiff” or “popufur”. This word would become known as the highlighting of elitism, particularly that of fiscal abundance. More ironic is that the convention that coined this phrase was even smaller than the Utah convention at an attendance cap of 300.

This word is “fursuite”. A word put forth to the press by the chair of Harbour City Fur Con. It was defined as meaning “a fursuit that is cheaply made”; giving the example of a costume that is being worth less than $5,000. What followed in its wake was a stark look at classist behaviors at the small Syndey gathering, and the fandom at large.

From the Yerf Archive