A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/13/a-wolf-in-sheeps-clothing/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=678

So the sex blogger community has been all abuzz today because of a certain adult toy store banning Epiphora, a very popular toy reviewer. I’ve kind of always known that there was something not quite right about that website ever since I first heard about them. First it was because they sold products that are dangerous (which they later stopped selling) and then I heard brief mentionings of how they had wronged people who had worked for them. I’d never really researched it though since I felt like it never really concerned me since I wouldn’t promote them here on my blog anyway.

But since there was the buzz today I decided to do a little bit of research. Both AAG and Essin’Em have written about their experiences with the company and that enlightened me quite a bit.

But all I can think about is how EF is so much like Suicide Girls (you’ll notice I won’t link to either of the sites because I dont’ want to give them traffic). I have a lot more experience in the alt porn community than I do in the sex blogging community. Or at least I did at the height of alt porn. So this is the connection I instantly drew.

Both sites are wolves in sheep’s clothing. They are both pretending they are something they are not, but even worse is that they are pretending to be good, but they really have other intentions. They pretend to be the good people who have worked hard to create a good, ethical product or service and then they exploit it in order to make lots of money.

Suicide Girls pretended to be a typical alt porn site that just happened to rake in tons of dough. They even pretended to be run by a woman so that they could put a softer feminist touch on the whole porn thing. They weren’t out to exploit women! They were women! Bullshit. The bigger they got, the more difficult it was to keep the sheep’s wool in place. Their real goals and intentions started to show through more and more as models were made to sign ridiculous contracts while other models were banned from the website and yet their content still remained and was often sold off to the highest bidder. The community members and newer models refused to believe what was going on. They tried to discuss it in the community only to find threads deleted and them banned as well. SG fooled a lot of people, but a lot of us in the alt industry saw them for what they were pretty quickly. I was a part of a site that helped them into existence and then got stabbed in the back once they were doing well enough on their own. These good companies then changed their contracts to show the models that they would protect them and their images; to show that they were the real deal.

There are similarities here to EF. EF has made money by pretending to be an ethical honest sex shop like the feminist sex shops out there who have worked their asses off to spread the word about healthy sexuality and dangerous products. But see there’s an obvious difference right away. When confronted with the fact that anal-eze is dangerous they continued to sell it until it no longer fit in what they wanted their image to be. They didn’t stop selling it on principal. They sold it because people bought it and that makes them money. Only once they felt that it truly conflicted with the image they were trying to portray did they stop selling it.

EF is not a feminist sex shop. They have not worked hard to make the world a better place. They work hard to make money. And you know what, that’s fine. It’s a business which is supposed to make money. The problem is when they pretend that they are all the things that the feminist sex shops of the world have tried so hard to attain, but aren’t actually that at all.

And just along the same lines of SG, EF is now censoring and banning community members. I predict the next move they will make is to insist that all reviewers only review for them.

Ok the truth is that I don’t like drama, but I felt this needed to be said because I feel like it is so difficult to know who to trust in the adult industry. There are many wolves in sheep’s clothing and just straight up wolves. But without education a lot of people can’t even spot the wolves who aren’t hiding. There are so many dangerous products and exploitative services in the adult industry because there are few regulations. It is an industry that has to self-regulate. That is why it is so important to be able to trust who you are giving your money to.  If you can’t trust them, how can you be sure they’re not out to screw you in the most unpleasant way possible?

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This post, A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/13/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing. Thanks for visiting!
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e[lust] #13

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/12/elust-13/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=670

photo courtesy of Ms Scarlett

Welcome to e[lust] - Your source for sexual intelligence and inspirations of lust from the smartest & sexiest bloggers! Whether you’re looking for hot steamy smut, thought-provoking opinions or expert information, you’re going to find it here. Want to be included in e[lust] #14? Start with the rules, check out the schedule in the site’s sidebar and subscribe to the RSS feed for updates!

~ This Week’s Top Three Posts ~

StuckSince I first saw the picture he sent me I have had this visual stuck in my head, like a sweet thing lingering in the mouth…. wrists bound, tied to headboard–ankles bound, tied to baseboard– naked, exposed

Animalistic - I grabbed the back of your ponytail like I owned you. No protest. Only a moan. Fuck, how aroused were you? Even your kiss was desperate, wet, passionate; your body was on fire and it showed.

A Hot AfternoonShe took Grady’s hand and guided it between her legs. Grady’s instinct kicked in as soon as she touched Hatty’s tender clit and felt the wetness gathered there.

~ e[lust] Editress ~

Confessional: Fixation/AddictionIn porn, both video and photo, I have little interest in the men. It’s the women who get my full attention, who arouse me. I seek them out. I flick past hetero couplings, bored. Blow jobs? Meh. Oh wait, close-up of her pussy? Her coming? Ok I’ll watch now.

~ Featured Post (Lilly’s Pick) ~

Thanks for the mansplanation, but I greatly prefer my vibratorHis views on female masturbation (derived, clearly, from absolutely nothing legitimate) are so fucked up, so irritating, and so detrimental, that I want to punch him in the face. It is, truly, mansplaining at its finest.

See also: Pleasurists #75 and #76 for all your sex toy review needs.

All blogs that have a submission in this edition must re-post this digest from tip-to-toe on their blogs within 7 days. Re-posting the photo is optional and the use of the “read more…” tag is allowable after this point. Thank you, and enjoy!

Thoughts & Advice on Sex & Relationships

A Pondering
An I thought us girls were supposed to be the confusing sex?
I get ragingly horny watching gay porn
Menopausal Body
Over-Rated
Snotty Blowjob
The Ethical Slut
What counts as kinky?
What Is Romance
Why We Swing

Sex News, Interviews, Politics and Humor

Strip Club Series – Part One – Club Super Sexe

Kink & Fetish

An Anal Fairy Tale
How I Turned My (Ex)Husband Into a Pervert Pt.1
In Her Place
Kinky
Love that Thang He Does
On Productivity, Insanity and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Rights and Responsibilities
Shoe shopping
Show Me Your Teeth
The Greek Slave
Voice

Erotic Writing

A Recurring Fantasy
almost
Awakenings
A Helping Hand
Bite me
challenge
des fumes
Exposed
Frankie Says Swallow
For your prompt review
Gardening
Glass Elevators
Haze
In The Boardroom With Brock
Microfantasy Monday, week 77: Rain, part 2
Monday Morning Flash – “Homebaking”
One of the Hottest Moments I Had as a Prostitute
Seven
the feast
Unexpected Pleasures
Used
Wet

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This post, e[lust] #13, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/12/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: e[lust] #13. Thanks for visiting!
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Sex and Dis/Ability Survey

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/10/sex-and-disability-survey/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=667

This is a message from a truly special lady: Essin’Em

Call for Participants: Sexually Able

Sexually Able aims to bring light upon sexuality and dis/ability, and create a path for peoples’ voices to be heard.

What is it? It’s a large scale survey of self identified people with disabilities and their partners.  Eventually, it’ll be turned into a book for people to read, enjoy and see the rich and diverse sexuality that is within the disability community.

Why is this needed? As we enter the second decade of the 21st century, there is still a large gap in people’s minds when they think about sexuality as it relates to people with disabilities, whether cognitively or physically. While some studies have been performed regarding the potential for differently-able people to lead satisfying sexual lives, in which satisfying seems to center around the ability to orgasm, very little has been written about the experiences involving the sexualities and experiences of people who identify as people with disabilities/ handicapped/disabled/differently-able, as well as their partners.

People of all ability levels are sexual beings. Sex is hard enough to navigate and negotiate when one fits in with society’s notions of what a sexual being is, but once you add in the concept of ability, it can become quite challenge. This book, through these surveys, seeks to bring forward the stories, challenges and experiences of people of various ability levels and their partners, putting a face on the trials that so many valuable members of our society must face and the positive experiences as well. By sharing the experiences of the dis/ability community in relation to sexuality, Sexually Able hopes to challenge people’s viewpoints, foster discussion and conversation, and open doors towards a shift in the social constructions surrounding sexuality and disability.

What does it involve?

Just fill out one of the surveys (for people with disabilities or for partners of PWD), send it in, and have your voice and experiences heard. You’re welcome to take your time, and fill in as much or as little information as you’d like. If you need assistance in completing your survey, please let us know. Please feel free to pass this site/these surveys on to your friends, lovers, support groups, therapists, doctors, caregivers, and anyone else that may identify as having a disability or as a partner of someone with a disability.

For more information and/or to fill out the surveys, please visit http://sexuallyable.wordpress.com. Questions? Email SexuallyAbleBook@gmail.com.

Who is behind Sexually Able?

Shanna Katz M.Ed is a full spectrum sexuality educator with a Master’s of Human Sexuality Education from Widener University. She is currently based in Phoenix, AZ, is the resident sexuality educator for Fascinations, and a member of AASECT (the American Association of Sexuality Educator, Counselors and Therapists). As a sexuality educator, she travels the country teaching workshops at colleges, sex toy stores, dungeons, sexuality conferences and more.

Shanna has a special interest in working in sexuality and dis/ability, and runs workshops and discussions about the intersection of these identities, how to build sex positivity in communities of PWD, negotiating disability in a BDSM context and more.  She’s also working on an anthology regarding sexuality and dis/ability, entitled Sexual Ability.  Please see the call for submissions to submit an essay.

Note on definitions of disability (or the lack of): This survey is for those who identify as someone with a disability, someone who is disable, someone who is differently able, any other such identity and the partners of the former. There is no hierarchy of disability, nor is there any exact definition. If you identify as one of the aforementioned, please feel free to take the survey.

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This post, Sex and Dis/Ability Survey, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/10/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Sex and Dis/Ability Survey. Thanks for visiting!
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Speakeasy

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/09/speakeasy/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=653

Here’s my latest installment on XCritic. I reviewed Speakeasy which won a Feminist Porn Award for most tantalizing trans film. My advice: rent it, but don’t spend the cash to buy it. Here’s a snippet:

“This is the pairing we’ve been waiting for! Or at least I have. Lorelei with her epic hotness and Billy Castro with his rugged handsomeness. This should be a scene that causes all to wank. And maybe, just maybe, had I muted this scene I might have loved it. But I made the mistake of keeping the sound on. At first Billy’s deep rumbly moans were totally hot. That is until his very breathing became moaning. Every breath in and out was a moan. A low, hoarse moan that sounded more like a 3 pack a day smoker who just climbed a couple flights of stairs. Combine this with Lorelei’s whinnying moans and we have a chorus of annoying which completely detracts from the sex.” Read more

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This post, Speakeasy, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/09/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Speakeasy. Thanks for visiting!
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10 Sexual Myths

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/06/10-sexual-myths/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=650

Speaking of sex positivity, I just read a fantastic article over at Feministing which discusses a compilation of sexual myths that a panel came up with at the Rethinking Virginity Conference at Harvard. This relates to my previous articles because our narrow definitions of and great value placed on virginity is extremely sex negative. It implies that the only kind of valuable sex is heterosexual penis in vagina sex and it also implies that a woman’s body becomes devalued the more often she has sex. It implies that the sex itself will be less good with a woman who has had lots of sex. I tend to think that that is the opposite of true. The more experience we have doing something, the better we get at it. Practice, practice, practice.

Here are the myths they came up with (go to the article to read what they have to say about each myth):

  1. The hymen is THE definitive marker of virginity.
  2. Valuing virginity protects girls and women.
  3. Queer sex doesn’t “count”
  4. You can only “lose it” once.
  5. Sex within marriage is the “healthiest” kind.
  6. There’s one universal definition of sex.
  7. Slut-shaming plays an important social role by discouraging “risky” behavior.
  8. Teens should learn that sex is dangerous so they won’t put themselves at risk for unwanted pregnancy and/or STIs.
  9. Teens don’t want to talk about sex with their parents.
  10. There is no such thing as sex-positive abstinence.
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This post, 10 Sexual Myths, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/06/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: 10 Sexual Myths. Thanks for visiting!
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Sex Positivity

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/05/sex-positivity/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=645

In reference to one of my status updates on facebook one of my friends asked what it meant to be sex positive. Another friend linked the original friend to the wikipedia page about it, which in my opinion isn’t great. So I figured I would give my own definition of what it means to be sex positive.

I think a lot of people have slightly different variations on the meaning, but the shortest summation I can come up with for my own definition is: Sex is good and healthy when done safely and consensually.

That seems really simple, but unfortunately Western society is very sex negative. Sex is only really acceptable in the confines of a heterosexual marriage where the goal is procreation. In fact, in U.S. society, nothing should ever be done for the sole fact that it feels good.

For example, masturbation in a sex negative society is pretty far down on the hierarchy of sex acts because it is only done to please oneself. And when we try to convince others that masturbation is good and healthy we often find ourselves talking in terms of what it can do for your health. Oh, you’ll reduce the likelihood of prostate cancer, you’ll help relax menstrual cramps, you’ll lower your risk for incontinence in your old age, it will improve your  mood, etc. What about: it feels good? Masturbate because it feels good!

But if you really want to easily show just how sex negative we are let’s look at what is acceptable to let children see. In this society we seem to prefer to have our kids watch someone being physically abused than to see a naked man or woman, let alone see naked people enjoying their own or other peoples’ bodies. Which would you think would be more damaging for your kid to walk in on: someone being brutally murdered or a loving couple having sex? I would personally prefer a child to walk in on the loving couple. This obviously can’t be true though of a lot of people who have no problems with their kids watching network TV, but when a breast is accidentally flashed they go berzerk. Because kids have never seen a breast before that’s for sure.

And the response usually of sex negative folks when confronted with the idea of sex positivity is usually one of morals, but also one of concern for unwanted pregnancy and STIs.

The morals I already covered. Mine are obviously different since I think that sex is good and violence is bad. But the issue of unwanted pregnancy and STIs is when sex positive and sex negative folks seem to talk past each other instead of engaging in an actual discussion.

Sex negative folks seem to have the opinion that unwanted pregnancy and STIs are there to deter people from having sex. It is god’s way of punishing the wicked. They blame sex positive people for teen pregnancy and rampant rates of STIs. And not only are we talking past each other here, we’re using different terminology. For sex negative folks we’re promiscuous, not sex positive. Even though, in reality sex positivity has no real effect on how many sex partners a person has or does not have. And we reject the word promiscuous because of it’s negative connotations.

Sex positive folks realize that while pleasure is good, it comes with it’s fair share of risks. Everything worth doing in life comes with risks. But sex positive people also emphasize using protection. We don’t see STIs and unplanned pregnancies as a punishment from god, but more as a consequence to being irresponsible and in general just something that can happen when you take risks. When you drive a car you wear your seatbelt. You can still get into an accident and you could still die, but your risks go down exponentially. And for most Americans, driving or riding in cars is worth the risk.

I, as a sex positive person, do not care how many people you have sex with or what kind of sex you have with those people. I care that you are having safe sex with people who actively participate in the sex and that you’re enjoying yourselves.

I advocate for comprehensive sex education because I feel that people need to know all the facts before engaging in sexual activity. Sex negative people, on the other hand, tend to lean more towards abstinence only education because if you tell the kids about sex they’re going to want to do it. I think that is ridiculous. Kids are going to learn about sex from the wrong places (and gain a lot of misinformation) and they are going to have sex anyways. It is necessary to give them the tools to decide when to have sex and how to do it safely and pleasurably.

Now I’ve been pretty black and white here. The truth is that everything is a spectrum. It’s doubtful that most people are completely sex negative or completely sex positive. They are somewhere in the middle. But it’s a bit easier to kind of lay out the different beliefs in opposition to each other to give you more of an idea of the differences between the two.

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This post, Sex Positivity, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/05/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Sex Positivity. Thanks for visiting!
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Rock-Chick

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/03/rock-chick/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=642

The Rock-Chick is a silicone dual stimulation vibe, but not like the kind you’re used to. It’s not a rabbit-style vibe like most dual-stim vibes. Instead it is a U-shaped vibrator that hugs the g-spot and clitoris. Or at least that is what it is supposed to do. See the problem with a lot of toys that promise to hug or fit your body don’t work for everyone because everyone’s body is different. And apparently the Rock-Chick wants my clit to be about 2 inches above where it is. You can see my problem.

But in all honesty, even if it did fit my body just right I don’t think I’d like it all that much. Sure, it’s a good quality toy with an interesting design and I like the idea of rocking back and forth on this thing to work my way towards orgasm, but in actuality because it doesn’t fit right and because the bullet vibe doesn’t do it for me, I actually kind of hated this toy.  The innovative shape made me think I would like a toy that if I had actually sat down and thought about, I would’ve realized that I wouldn’t like at all.

I need a strong vibrator! Hello! I use a freakin Hitachi Magic Wand for gosh sakes! I’m not sure why I thought a bullet vibe powered by an N battery would somehow do anything for me when I’m used to a plug-in. And what is with the N batteries lately? Is this the new hard to find sex toy battery?

So obviously when I’m getting g-spot stimulation I prefer to have my clit uncovered so that I can get a hitachi on it. The design of the Rock-Chick is such that it covers the clit and therefore I cannot get my hitachi on me. Oh but I did try. And I have to thank the Rock-Chick for teaching me something about my vagina. Just when you thought you already knew all the tricks of your vagina it takes a toy that you don’t particularly like to teach you something.

The vibrator that comes with this thing is actually kind of rumbly for a cordless bullet vibe, but by the time the vibrations get to your g-spot (the vibe rests in the part nearest your clit – which is possibly actually several inches away from it) it’s more like a high pitched buzzy vibration. I always thought I hated vibrators in my vagina, but had been coming around as I tried different ones and seemed to not hate them as much. I HATED the high pitch buzzyness. HATED IT! But when I took the bullet out and tried to access my clit with the hitachi, the deep rumbly vibrations of my plug-in carried through the Rock-Chick and I loved it. So now I know that it’s the buzzy I hate, not the vibrations in general. So now I am on a quest to find hitachi attachments that actually interest me and deep rumbly g-spot vibrators. I have my eye on this and this. So yay! At least the Rock-Chick taught me something, right?

Anyways, just because I didn’t like it doesn’t mean that you won’t. If you prefer buzzy vibrators and have a body that this toy would fit you’d probably love this thing. I’m just not sure how you would know if it would fit your body ahead of time. But the good news is that it is silicone so it is non-porous and fully sterilizable so if you hate it you can clean it and pass it on to someone else to try. That is probably what I will do.

Also, this toy says that it is “partner friendly” but I’m not really sure how that is possible. This is really more of a solo toy unless your partner wants to watch. Not sure how they would join in.

Thanks Babeland for letting me try the Rock-Chick and teaching me something new about my vagina!

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This post, Rock-Chick, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/03/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Rock-Chick. Thanks for visiting!
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Jiz Lee and a Mustachioed Syd Blakovich

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/02/jiz-lee-and-a-mustachioed-syd-blakovich/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=637

Today I bring you porn! Mmmm porn! Check out this hot set of Jiz Lee and Syd Blakovich playing with an njoy eleven. I’m way too entertained by Syd’s drawn on mustache.

Click for free gallery

And here they are again in some sort of creepy abandoned building. Syd is still mustachioed!

Click for free gallery

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This post, Jiz Lee and a Mustachioed Syd Blakovich, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/02/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Jiz Lee and a Mustachioed Syd Blakovich. Thanks for visiting!
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Calling Writers

http://askgarnet.com/2010/05/01/calling-writers/

http://askgarnet.com/?p=634

I have an exciting project I’m trying to start and there will be a lot of info on it later as things start to get developed. If you follow me on Twitter you’ve probably seen me saying cryptic things. I will tell you all in due time. I promise! But for now I need to continue being cryptic because it’s no fun when people steal your ideas that you’ve been working hard on.

That being said though, I need to put out a call for writers. I’m specifically looking for sex positive sex educators and erotica writers. Do you want to write books or short stories, but don’t want to go through the hassle of trying to find a publisher? Contact me! I want to work with you.

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This post, Calling Writers, originally appeared on Ask Garnet on 05/01/2010. Click over to leave a comment or ask a question: Calling Writers. Thanks for visiting!
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