Ursa Major Awards and a furry fandom game-changer – NEWSDUMP (5-24-16)

by Patch O'Furr

Headlines, links and little stories to make your tail wag.  Tips: patch.ofurr@gmail.com

UMAweb1_2aUrsa Major Awards announced.

WE’RE #2! Awooooo!!!  “Best Magazine” went to Heat from Sofawolf Press. Next year, maybe Dogpatch Press can get #1 with a shameless award campaign with sexy fursuit pin-up poses. (As fursuiter on staff, it’s not that I don’t have standards… I would enjoy it just as much as anyone who wants to see it.)

Congrats also to Furries Among Us, edited by Thurston Howl, a nice success for a new small publisher.  Then there’s the interesting topic of “Best Website” for FurAffinity.

FurAffinity hacked – furry problems reach wider community.

VICE: “Another Day, Another Hack: Furry Site Hacked, Content Deleted.”  Flayrah reported loss of six days of data and how the problem is being addressed.

Source code for the FurAffinity site was gained through a security hole.  The code ended up on flash drives distributed at Biggest Little Fur Con, even left around at random.  Shortly afterward, personal accounts were accessed.  Some people who used passwords in common with other accounts (Google etc.) reported attempts to access those. Password reset was done for all users, locking some users out of their accounts if they weren’t linked to current email addresses.

Dogpatch Press got tips, although the info was already on this gossip forum.  There was also an informative link to a timeline of FurAffinity’s problems maintained by Eevee.

There’s a long pattern of problems.  But then it couldn’t have been easy to build a large fan-based site with a very shaky business model.  In my opinion, it shows outside stigma as much as inside mistakes, and a positive testament to fan commitment.

Furry Network launched to the public – do FurAffinity’s problems make opportunity for a game-changer?  

On May 12-15, Biggest Little Fur Con was host for a planned launch event for Furry Network.  It’s the new art site sparked by IMVU’s buyout of FurAffinity, and developed by the minds behind Bad Dragon, king of what I call the “shadow economy” of Furry fandom.

If we named two leading “institutions” rising out of grassroots, DIY fandom (“Big Furry”), the other might be Anthrocon, representing the “family friendly” light side.  Occasionally I bring up the 2012 rule change that blocked Bad Dragon from Anthrocon – a superficially tiny event representing a major schism between two fundamentally conflicting camps.  Their strange coexistence is the biggest drawback and strength of Furry. (It’s no mistake that the recent Fursonas documentary specifically focused on leaders of both.)

Game-changer is a hype term – which may be well deserved.  Furry Network appears to offer the first widely useable mediation system for payments and ratings to manage Furry business.  Flayrah recently had discussion about why Furry-specific auction sites only inhabit a small niche apart from activity hubs.  This would be the first fandom-specific site to bring it together.

Remember how FurAffinity’s “cub problem” kept it from having a relationship with a payment processor, preventing growth?  Whatever Dragoneer’s faults, he kept the site largely untamed with only modest compromise about content.  But that was natively an art site, not an adult business built in the face of outside stigma about “morality”.  Furry Network starts out with a robust payment system already in place thanks to a thriving market for Bad Dragon products.

Could a potential game-changer like this come from any other fan institution?  It’s why I say “porn saves.”

FurAffinity’s most recent drama isn’t the first time they faced a challenge from competition during a crisis. Last year Flayrah reported shedding users when the FurAffinity Forums broke away.  Now, security measures on FA (including new Captchas) have a suspiciously convenient side-effect.  Grab popcorn.

“Announcing the Furry Writers Guild University!”

It may look like just another subforum, but it’s a home for online writing workshops sponsored by the FWG.

“What I’d love for the FWGU to become — with our members’ and supporters’ help — is a place where both new and experienced furry writers can come to learn about writing in a more in-depth way than just a single critique, where our experienced members can pay it forward by leading workshops for their peers and up-and-coming writers in the fandom, and where writers who don’t have the ability to travel to conventions and attend panels can get a little of that same panel experience online from wherever they are. If anyone (member or future member) would like to lead a workshop, we have a proposal form here you can fill out and submit.” – (Renee Carter Hall, “Poetigress”, FWG President 2014-2016.)

Furry Publishers twitter accounts collected by Fuzzwolf of FurPlanet.  A list of 14 publishers for furry authors to know.


AMAZING FURRY NEWS COMING SOON – Zootopia Porn Parody As Popular As Real Thing In #7!