A few days ago, I discovered Fetlife, a social network for people interested in BDSM and / or fetishism.

This site exists since January 2008, I am a bit to the fluff. Moreover, he tells me (again!) That he had already crossed this site. But, hoping not to be the last one informed, I propose you a small visit.

Registration on Fetlife

I am asked to choose my pseudonym, my password, and my gender. I have a choice of a lot of options. Far from limiting themselves to the masculine and the feminine, they have the good taste to avoid putting all transgender people in one and the same category. Having registered as a blog, I have trouble deciding on the appropriate genre. No problem, “undecided” is also provided in the possible options. I’m told that I can change my information later.

I will learn later that even the pseudonym is interchangeable, provided you do not rename more than once a month.

The roles in BDSM

I am also asked, in addition to my sexual orientation, what role I prefer in a BDSM practice. I have the choice between:

Dominant / Top / Master

Not being familiar with all these names, I used Wikipedia to discern the difference between Dominant (e), top and master (sse). There is no “official” definition, but basically:

The “top” is rather focused on practices such as spanking, bondage, humiliation, etc …
The “dominant” mainly plays on his authority.
And finally, a “master” is a dominant person who plays his role on a daily basis, or by framing his practices with a well-defined set of rules and rituals.

That said, these naming conventions are not always respected. Indeed, everyone has their own definition of BDSM and lives it as they see fit.

Bottom / submissive / slave / “pet”

The “bottom” is the playmate of the top, the “submissive” that of the dominant, the “slave” that of the master. The “pet” (“pet”) is a subject on a leash, and possibly adorned with attributes that give it an animal aspect (plug-tail, false ears, mask, shoe-shoes, etc.).


A “switch” is a person who practices BDSM, but who likes to alternate roles.


Well, I will not define you “fetishist”, anyway. I imagine that it is still necessary, to enter the context of the site, that the fetishism in question approaches at least a minimum of the field of the BDSM. Fetish applesauce (yes, I know you are many), you have not found your happiness yet.

Sadistic / masochist / sadomasochist

Afterwards, I will discover that in these categories, we sometimes find some pretty impressive photos.


The term “vanilla” qualifies a person who has no particular interest in BDSM or fetishistic practices. In looking for the meaning of this expression, considering the yellow color of vanilla, I expected something else …


A kinkster is open to various sexual games out of the ordinary, without focusing on a specific practice.


Other information requested

I also appreciate that it makes sense here not to ask for my name, my job, or whether I intend to reproduce or move in the next few years. Indeed, it is unfortunately the case on many dating sites, who have not thought to change their template between their version for Mormons in search of nuptials and their version dedicated to fans of anal dilation. When I register somewhere where we talk about ass, I have no desire to submit my resume or tell my childhood.

The only personal info that is requested: an email address (which will not be displayed on the site), a date of birth, a country and a region.

All the same, just to criticize a little bit: the captcha you’re asked to copy to prove that you’re not a bot is hypra-crabbing. I missed four times.

Once on the site

Once connected, I note with joy that there is still a lot of people registered. In France, for example, there are more than 9000 registered. Even though many accounts date a little, it is nevertheless a large population. It is possible to search for registrants by geographical location, or by fetishism. However, these two criteria can not be combined.

The site is clean and clear. You can access a messenger and a chat, free and without any limitation regarding the communication between registrants.

Profiles are visible to all registrants, but are not indexed. This does not of course ensure complete confidentiality. Anyone can register, including people who might recognize you if you do not hide your nose or ostensibly display it. However, these people will first be registered on a BDSM community site, eh … But this will nevertheless prevent a recruiter from finding a picture of you naked while sapped by you googlant a little too close.

Creating your Fetlife Profile

And a pleasant surprise awaits me: the photos. These are also visible free of charge, if the person who published them has chosen to show them to all registrants. Otherwise, they are shown only to that person’s “friends”.

Many registrants publish beautiful photos. Artistic and / or erotic. Not all, of course. As everywhere, there is also a guy who put the picture of his dog, another photo of his cock. However, there are significantly less lonely teubs than on a dating site. As far as I’m concerned, I do not have anything to brag about. Indeed, out of want to look for a more adequate image, I put my Gravatar, in resolution all fuzzy.

Paid content

For a subscription of five euros per month, access to videos and a longer publication history. The longer history is mainly used to keep your eyes peeled for longer, by viewing the news on the “Kinky & Popular” page, which is devoted to the most successful publications on the site.

Other features

The site also references events, and includes a forum, organized in “groups” of discussion, in English. You can create a new discussion group, or participate in an existing group. It also has a section “Writing”, devoted to the texts written by the members (in English too).

The atmosphere

Finally, a nice enough point: the day after my registration, I received a message entitled “Your Official FetLife Welcome!”. This email was not from a bot, but from a “FetLife Greeter”, one of 55 volunteer members of the site who welcome newcomers. In addition to giving some indications and useful links, the “greeters” offer their help to answer any questions that remain unclear despite the information available.

Alt.com, a free alternative to Fetlife

I was informed of the existence of Alt.com, which I must mention also in this article. This BDSM community site, which currently has only a few members (a little over 400 at the time I write these lines, but this is only the beginning, registrants will come with time) It’s basically the same as Fetlife, but it’s totally free.

The atmosphere deserves a ride, Despite the low number of subscribers on Alt.com, I have strangely met more social interactions on Fetlife.

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