Skelemon

Feedback wanted: Changing the privacy of the Sex Talk Forum

What privacy setting do you think would be best for Sex Talk  

47 members have voted

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  1. 1. What privacy setting do you think would be best for Sex Talk

    • Members-only
      42
    • Hidden
      5

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  • Poll closed on 10/18/18 at 11:40 AM

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Cimmering Cauldron

I'm open to the Members-Only option because I'm sure people post quite personal anecdotes there, but I'm definitely against the Hidden option.

I think it's too useful of a forum and I don't see any problems with the forum content that would require it to be hidden. And I'm 100% with Heart in being against an age-restriction for that forum. We've always been a sexuality/education website and so sexual discussions/topics come up; I'd have thought if those topics were a concern in regards to the age of members who could access the content (legally) then we would have had to make the account minimum age 18 years ago if it was a problem, but with the scope of the site and our account minimum age still being 13 I think it must be fine. Besides, many people start exploring their sexuality or looking for information about sex/sexuality in their teens and I think it's better to have access to information and real life examples/stories while you're going through that.

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Heart
8 hours ago, InquisitivePhilosopher said:

Would it help to merge (H)aven with the Tea and Sympathy Forum? It sounds as though they're similar. Tea and Sympathy is also a hidden forum, only for members, just like (H)aven.

 

Perhaps, since some members aren't/weren't aware of (H)aven, there would be more participation/replies to others' (H)aven posts if it were merged, or is (H)aven kept separate because the posts might be more graphic or traumatizing for others on AVEN?

You hit the nail on the head there in the last sentence. hAVEN comes with a giant trigger warning, and some pretty dark stuff is talked about there sometimes. Abuse, trauma, rape... Not always, of course, but those aren't off the table.

 

In short, T&S is where I go when I've had a bad day at work, or I'm feeling burned out, or I've had an argument with a loved one. hAVEN is where I went when I was questioning the feeling like a compromise I made in a past relationship around sex was feeling more like rape, but I was facing a lot of gaslighting and couldn't even figure out my own thoughts any more. That's only me personally, but maybe this helps show why we screen the people we let in.

 

In short, I went to hAVEN when I was feeling extra levels of vulnerable, and like I'd been stabbed multiple times in the gut. It's "safer" than T&S because we screen, even just a little, whoever we let in. T&S is where I go when I need some ... well, tea and sympathy, but not medical wrappings and first aid. If that makes sense as an analogy.

 

And Scarlet (Edit: Chesire-cat said this, not Scarlet, sorry) is right; you don't have to have something to say to ask for entrance to hAVEN. If you're sympathetic and can spare energy to hug those in need, and you don't mind that sometimes it gets really dark, then anyone can consider asking for entrance if you meet the requirements.

 

And that is my little PSA about hAVEN, sorry to derail :P

Edited by Heart
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Deus Ex Infinity

Members only. There are still a lot of members who'd like or need to talk about sex related issues to get support or advise. Besides, I don't think that there's any point in hiding it. Nobody needs to click or read any of the posts anyway. It's pretty easy to stay away.

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FictoCannibal.
On 10/12/2018 at 1:02 AM, Kumoku said:

Since AVEN is bound by American laws and sex is considered "taboo/obscene", I suggest making an "18+ sex chat" area and have it NOT be accessible to minors. Yeah, teens have questions about sex, I get it (I'm totally a sex positive advocate myself), HOWEVER, because of how the law stands, if a pissed off parent found their teen on a sex chat forum and wanted to sue? They'd be well within their rights.

 

So yeah, members only, but only for 18+ members. I know, not popular option, but this is the reality with how the USA law works. It's a slim chance of it happening, but if it does, AVEN IS SCREWED. 

I would say this (18+ I mean) is even more important for the 'TMI confessions' thread in chatterbox. The stuff I've seen there is more extreme than anything I've ever seen appear in Sex Talk, yet kids of any age can access that thread, read it, and even comment (so a 13 year old girl could be commenting alongside a 50 year old man who is confessing to being naked right now, or someone else who is confessing to watching bestiality porn or whatever, it's extreme!). But yeah, that's a different topic and admods have said they're looking into it. I complained about it a couple of years ago, and complained again recently, so hopefully something will come of my moaning because seriously, the content that goes on in that thread would get your video age-restricted immediately if you talked about it on YouTube (which has similar age guidelines as AVEN I believe, 13+). 

 

16 hours ago, divided_sky said:

What is hAVEN? I have never heard of it in 5 years of being here

^^ That is why it would be a bit too extreme to make Sex Talk hidden, if you ask me. No one would know about it (just as most people don't know of hAVEN), and it's actually quite a useful subforum for those who want to ask more graphic sexual questions. 'Members only' for sex talk, definitely. And putting 18+ in the title if possible. That way if a parent catches their kid in there the parent can't blame AVEN for not warning the kid about the adult content. Same with TMI Confessions.

 

 

 

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ben8884
On 10/11/2018 at 9:09 AM, Cheshire-Cat said:

The problem we have with this is relying on members putting their honest age when they create their account (and as they would need parental permission it's likely a lot don't). It would then need to be a hAVEN type forum where members would need to apply and have their age on their account checked prior to being allowed in.

If they lie, we are still off the hook. We have asked and therefor done our due diligence. Many sites that are 18+ do the same. I prefer having it hidden to all minors due to the possible graphic content that is discussed in the forum and the fear that one day a parent will see their minor on a fourm that really ought to be for 18+ and complain.

In terms of no one knowing it exists, we can post a sticky on the site comments forum telling people it exists and that they can PM a mod for access.

 

Quote

.And putting 18+ in the title if possible. That way if a parent catches their kid in there the parent can't blame AVEN for not warning the kid about the adult content. Same with TMI Confessions.

This actually might be the best solution. I just want the forum to be 18+ is all. 

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FictoCannibal.
13 hours ago, ben8884 said:

Thfis actually might be the best solution. I just want the forum to be 18+ is all. 

 Yeah even just specifying in the title of the forum (18+) then reiterating in the description that it's not for anyone under 18. That way you're kind of covered legally because if a parent catches a kid in there or whatever, you already specified that it's not for kids very clearly and the kid chose to go in anyway (same with when kids sneak into porn sites) 😧

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Cheshire-Cat

I wouldn't have 18+ on it. However, a disclaimer that it may contain graphic information should be in the description. Although 18 may make you an adult the age of consent is lower in many countries. AVEN is, after all, a website based on sexuality, and vis ed of that. Sex is a part of the vis ed of asexuality and many of the related groups. And theoretically someone of 13 needs parental permission to join AVEN anyway (unless they lie about their age).

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Philguin Baggins
2 hours ago, Cheshire-Cat said:

Although 18 may make you an adult the age of consent is lower in many countries.

Good point here. Here, it’s 16 and it would be good if everyone who is legally able to have sex could access the forum on that topic. For example, reading the forum might help people with anxiety about sex for the first time, etc. 

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FictoCannibal.
1 hour ago, Philguin Baggins said:

Good point here. Here, it’s 16 and it would be good if everyone who is legally able to have sex could access the forum on that topic. For example, reading the forum might help people with anxiety about sex for the first time, etc. 

Hmmm but if you make it R16 that would technically mean someone in a country where the age of consent is 18 might be accessing content they're not really meant to be viewing :o However I actually don't think educational sex talk really counts, or at least should be able to accessed by people around the age of 15 and up. It's more some of the stuff in the TMI Confessions thread that would be an issue if a parent caught their kid reading it on a site that's meant to be about more educational topics, if that makes sense? :o

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Heart

Just to put this into perspective, in Canada up until 2008 the legal age of consent for sex was 14. It was then changed to 16, but 14 year olds can still legally have sex if the person they are having sex with is not more than 5 years their elder. And the legal age also goes up beyond 16 if there's some kind of power dynamic, though I don't know the legal specs on that. One source:

 

Quote

The Tackling Violent Crime Act raises the legal age of sexual consent in Canada to 16 from 14, the first time it has been raised since 1892.

But the law includes a "close-in-age exception," meaning 14- and 15-year-olds can have sex with someone who is less than five years older.

 

However, I think someone would have to be extremely naive to think that people wait to have sex until it's legal, especially if that age is 18. In fact, I found one article that says that "the youth" these days on average start sexual relations at age 16 (and this is an average between early and late bloomers, so I imagine it's perfectly normal to be having sex before this as well):

 

Quote

The bright young things born after 2000 are known as Generation Z — and are the earliest starters of the group, having sex at an average age of 16.2 years old. That's almost two years younger than the Generation Xers.

In fact, according to healthychildren.org, masturbation is a common and normal behaviour in children as young as 6 years old:

Examples_SexualBehav_2_through_6.jpg

 

And I could link a lot more. In short, if these people are doing the thing, then I see no good reason to stop them from talking about it and being able to ask questions to more experienced folks. If they can't do that here, in a trusted community, they will likely try elsewhere in possibly less trusted places. Or rely on porn, because we all know that porn depicts realistic sex scenes, right? /sarcasm

 

As for whether we're in legal grey water in the US: Sex Talk is not porn. We do not allow graphic images for the pure purpose of arousal, we do not allow erotic novels with the pure purpose of arousal, nothing is for the pure purpose of arousal. It's educational, it's conversational, it's a community. And according to Wikipedia, sex ed starts way earlier than 18 in the states, so I don't see how it can be illegal. Parents can complain all they like, but I don't know what law we're violating, and I'd honestly welcome anyone to tell me specifically so I can look into it. Seriously, please provide me a law name or link or something to look up so I can familiarize myself with this.

 

Content warning for graphic content and all that stuff is a definite, and it's already there. The current forum description is (my emphasis):

Quote

Let's talk about sex! A forum to talk about sex and kinks. Be warned the forum comes with a giant TMI warning.

This forum is not for bragging about sexual exploits but for more adult and sexual discussions.

But again, I'm strongly against any kind of age restriction beyond the already-there 13+ or parental permission requirement. [As always, speaking for myself, not the team]

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Cheshire-Cat

An interesting article showing the state of sex education in some parts of America. Reading this makes me even more sure that the sex talk forum should be open to all considering the lack of education some teens are obviously getting in schools.

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Salmiakki

Why is it (h)AVEN? What does the (h) stand for? 

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Heart
2 minutes ago, Salmiakki said:

Why is it (h)AVEN? What does the (h) stand for? 

I don't believe it stands for anything; it's a play on words. It's a haven, as in a safe(r) sanctuary. But it has "AVEN" in it, so we capitalise that and it becomes a pun :)

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scare-iff of nottingham

 

1 minute ago, Salmiakki said:

Why is it (h)AVEN? What does the (h) stand for? 

It is a play on the word haven, meaning as a sanctury. 

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Salmiakki
1 minute ago, Heart said:

I don't believe it stands for anything; it's a play on words. It's a haven, as in a safe(r) sanctuary. But it has "AVEN" in it, so we capitalise that and it becomes a pun :)

 

1 minute ago, iff said:

 

It is a play on the word haven, meaning as a sanctury. 

Oh, okay. I didn't know haven was a word 😂

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Cheshire-Cat

I hope you can see this (never sure who can see what) but this is the vote for the original creation of sex talk which may help some people.

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daveb
8 hours ago, Salmiakki said:

Why is it (h)AVEN? What does the (h) stand for? 

(h) for hidden? :) 

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Amcan

Speaking as a member...

 

It's a forum for education. Education that is sorely lacking for a lot of young teenagers.

 

At 13 years old youngsters are exploring their bodies, their sexuality. It's far better for them to be armed with knowledge to make the right choices regarding that than them looking up the porn sites in their curiosity and getting a skewed view of the sexual world. 

 

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Lusnaofer
5 hours ago, Amcan said:

Speaking as a member...

 

It's a forum for education. Education that is sorely lacking for a lot of young teenagers.

 

At 13 years old youngsters are exploring their bodies, their sexuality. It's far better for them to be armed with knowledge to make the right choices regarding that than them looking up the porn sites in their curiosity and getting a skewed view of the sexual world. 

  

This is very true, and I think one advantage AVEN gives is that sexual information shared isn't laced with the subtext of bragging or maintaining a reputation of some kind.

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FictoCannibal.
1 hour ago, Lusnaofer said:

This is very true, and I think one advantage AVEN gives is that sexual information shared isn't laced with the subtext of bragging or maintaining a reputation of some kind.

Speak for yourself 8)

 

Lol jokes. I do agree that it's a good place for young people to get info (hence why I'm so vocal all the time. I'm sure I'm the best person to learn from 8)) That last part was a joke again, I don't know why I'm so unfunny today Y_Y 

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Lusnaofer
30 minutes ago, FictoCannibal. said:

Speak for yourself 8)

 

Lol jokes. I do agree that it's a good place for young people to get info (hence why I'm so vocal all the time. I'm sure I'm the best person to learn from 8)) That last part was a joke again, I don't know why I'm so unfunny today Y_Y 

You may be bragging to the wrong crowd, then. :P

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Skelemon

Thanks for a great discussion, people - you all raised some really good points :)

 

Just an FYI that the poll will close in about 3 and a half hours if anyone wants to get a last minute vote in. 

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scare-iff of nottingham
On 10/17/2018 at 9:47 PM, Amcan said:

Speaking as a member...

 

It's a forum for education. Education that is sorely lacking for a lot of young teenagers.

 

At 13 years old youngsters are exploring their bodies, their sexuality. It's far better for them to be armed with knowledge to make the right choices regarding that than them looking up the porn sites in their curiosity and getting a skewed view of the sexual world. 

 

On a similar note, I remember once accessing a crisis pregnancy website on preventing pregnancyfor their "what would you do" in this situation quiz. It had a check for age at the start and if you clicked under 18, it denied you access. "Sorry you have to be over 18".

 

I think the reason they blocked under 18s was that the test was if alcohol was involved.

 

I wish I was not being serious but this is true.

 

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