Kink in exile

Notes from a kinky nomad

This is not what good looks like

Actually I was going to call this post “this is what fail looks like” but figured I’d be more friendly. I came across this convo on the Internet today…

“FWIW, Jeff Mach who I know does a lot of work with the Geeky Kink event is allegedly protecting sexual harassers at his events. See the Predator Alert Tool for FetLife[0] report against Jeff Mach’s profile, copied here:

“I have been to two of Jeff Mach’s events, and both times, I was touched inappropriately by someone on his staff. The first time, it was at a Wicked Faire, and a security person grabbed my ass without asking or even warning me. The second time, I was at GKE and a female DM stepped into the middle of a scene with my boyfriend, interrupting, because she didn’t approve of the way we were playing. She touched me several times, while I was naked. After the first time, I quietly asked her not to do it again, but she told me she was an EMT and a DM. My boyfriend complained to Jeff, but was told ‘well, that DM’s boss is her boyfriend, and I’ve been getting a lot of complaints.” That’s it?

I do not feel that his events are a safe place for anyone who isn’t okay with random groping, touching, or disrespect. It’s scary to have a security person harass you, because who do you turn to? Other security people?

I tell all my friends not to go to JM events anymore. It’s scary and I haven’t been able to go to another public kinky event since.”




“that particular entry is a slight abuse of that reporting tool, but thanks for the info anyway. this is the first I’ve heard of either of those things, and I’m not seeing anything about him encouraging or even continually allowing that behavior. to be blunt, if that report is the worst thing that has happened at a JM event then they are doing really damn well.”

“I disagree with all your conclusions, Sparr Risher. To be blunt, the very fact that you have not heard about it except through this reporting tool showcases the intended use of said tool—which apparently you are not using? And secondly, I think your bar for “really damn well” is pathetically low. We are talking about sexual assault from a security person at a fetish event. One time is too many.”

It goes on, but I’m gonna pause cause, um, guys? What the fuck are you smoking? No, really, a DM touching someone without consent after being asked not to is “doing really damn well”? Perhaps you haven’t absorbed enough of the Scene’s advertising to see the irony here: the DM is in charge of preventing consent violations (and things likely to set the space on fire), and playing in public is meant to be the safer alternative.

And don’t you even think about telling me “well there’s rape culture in the over culture so of course some is gonna spill into BDSM…”  I’m sick of it and it’s lazy, so here’s the deal once and for all: yup, there’s rape culture in the over culture.  True that, but you know what, the over culture doesn’t go around parading Safe Sane and Consensual as its core tenants.  The BDSM scene has two core advertising messages: 1) there are other people who like the kind of sex you like here, so come here to get laid and 2) the kind of sex you like isn’t safe, so come to our public (but super secret special snowflake) play parties and you will be safe.  Don’t believe me?  Why did you go to your first (or first 20) BDSM events?  Where you there for the cheese plate?  Yeah, me too, disappointing isn’t it?

Here’s another way to look at it: I live in an up-and-coming urban center that’s more coming than up.  I know this, I chose this, and I also don’t lay my deepest sexual fantasies on this city’s streets.  In fact, I put away my valuables before I leave the train station, I know that the answer to “give me your money” is “here you go sir, have a nice day” unless they touch you in which case it’s heel-of-palm-to-bridge-of-nose-to-right-knee-to-groin-to-left-knee-to-head or fight with everything you’ve got whatever that may be.  It’s renter’s insurance that covers “incidence of civil unrest” and burglary, and the fact that I field catcalls with practiced ease.  And that’s over culture, with all of its pitfalls and all my defenses; by and large, I’m actually pretty comfy in it.  And then there is the BDSM scene, and sex/play parties in particular – this is not a 2am walk from a train station to my house with my diamond ring slipped into my pocket and my pepper spray in hand, this is supposed to be fun, sexy, naked, deep dark fantasy making fun.  When you tell me that this is part of the over culture so of course rape comes not from BDSM but from wherever these kinky people came from, that’s fine, but what you need to understand is that no one in the over culture thinks it’s reasonable for me to be naked in a room full of strangers, no one in the over culture suggested that this is a great idea, or nominated special people (DMs) to maintain safety while I do so, nor does the over culture charge me membership fees for this BS.  Furthermore, in the over culture I take full force self defense classes, that I suspect you won’t want demonstrated in your play spaces.

Oh yeah, you are also 50% more likely to be sexually assaulted in the BDSM scene than in the general population, so there is that.

Anyway, I wrote this post so I’d have somewhere to point when a friend or crush or whatnot goes “but why don’t you want to go to a play party?” The answer is because there is sooo much BS and so much casual violation of limits and boundaries and consent at these things that I don’t go in thinking “gee this will be a sexy good time.”  I go in thinking “fuck, some asshole is going to grope me, and then I’ll break his nose, and then we’ll get kicked out.”  The BDSM scene, and its events, just have a really crappy reputation in my mind – sorta like waking through a bad neighborhood in a short skirt at night, yeah sure I should have the right to do it, but it’s not worth the effort.  The thing is, if you want your play parties to be sexy and fun, and you want steady attendance, sooner or later you’re gonna have to deal with this, cause like I said: there’s rape culture in the over culture but the over culture doesn’t make it’s money by selling [your sexual fantasy here].

Written by kinkinexile

August 12, 2013 at 10:23 pm

Posted in community

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  1. […] Go over here now and read the conversational excerpts. Like, specifically scroll down and look at pieces that start with “A friend:” because while this is true (very, deeply, personally true). That chatter, things like this give voice and context to the changes I’ve forced. And the stuff attributed to T, yep, that’s why blaming rape in BDSM on over culture is a cop out. […]

  2. Jeff Mach has a particularly shitty reputation for telling people what they want to hear so they’ll buy his tickets and using up anyone who works for him to the point of them breaking. I cannot stress enough how far away from him people should get. Don’t go to The Geeky Kink Event, don’t go to Wicked Faire, and for the love of God, don’t go to the Steampunk World’s Fair. It’s a family friendly event, yeah, right. It’s the same audience who goes, and they give the same amount of fucks who sees them playing in public spaces, and no one makes two bones about it. And he encourages people to bring their KIDS. FUCK THAT.


    January 20, 2015 at 2:31 am

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