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[identity profile] jarandhel.livejournal.com

There seems to be a significant migration of otherkin to a new service: TurtleSeed.  I had never heard of this service before today, but from what I've been able to determine it is a service similar to Twitter which allows people to make microblog posts of 140 characters or less. TurtleSeed is unique, however, in that it is built from the ground up with an eye towards privacy, eliminating trolls, encouraging positivity, and even the ability to designate certain words as triggers in one's user settings. By default, turtleseed posts expire after 3 days, for privacy reasons, though one has the ability to change that setting on an individual level.

There are already a wide variety of otherkin "clans" on TurtleSeed.  These are roughly equivalent to facebook groups or livejournal communities, organizing around a particular discussion topic.  Some of these are public, while others require approval to join.  Some are permanent, while others have a set duration they will be in existence.  And some even allow all posts to them to be made anonymously.  One of these clans, /otherkinchat, already boasts ~328 members despite just having been created on August 20, 2014.  And it's more active than most otherkin groups I've seen, on any medium.

The otherkin clans of which I am currently aware are:

The communities there do seem to have been influenced, IMO, more by tumblr otherkin culture than the culture of the wider community, but the activity level definitely makes it something to keep an eye on.

[identity profile] overlord-mordax.livejournal.com
After a several year hiatus, From Fiction, a large resource for otakukin and fictionkin has been archived at its original address (http://otakukin.atspace.com/). New content will now be uploaded at the new address on tumblr. The attached 'More Than Fiction' message boards will be maintaining their familiar address.
ext_1601924: (jimbo)
[identity profile] crystal-waters.livejournal.com
Content warnings: None

The fiction/media/otakukin forum, More Than Fiction has been deleted sometime in the past few days. It has been with little activity for months. Recently Selebis posted a thread saying she and Mordax no longer believe they are fictionkin.

The content of the forum is gone, but members can still long into their account and contact other members through notes.

Edit: The forum has returned, although previous posts could not be saved.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: None.

September: In the academic Journal of Religion, Media, and Digital Culture, David Robertson reviewed Danielle Kirby's writings about the otherkin community in Fantasy and Belief: Alternative Religions, Popular Narratives and Digital Cultures, a book published this year.

Robertson's review also functions as a concise introduction to otherkin and some of the overlapping groups described by Kirby. See that Robertson opens the review by giving a definition of otherkin:

The Otherkin are an online community of individuals who identify as ontologically non-human; while occupying a human body, their 'true selves' (one might read 'souls') are other. The majority of Otherkin identify as animals, beings recognisable from folklore and mythology (dragons, elves, vampires) or characters and races from popular fiction (literature, television, computer games and particularly Japanese manga and anime). [...] Of course, there is no strict delineation to be drawn between fictional and religious or mythological narratives; while dragons, fairies and angels all derive from the mythologies of specific historical cultures, their contemporary constructions derive as much, if not more, from recent portrayals in popular fiction.

I think this is a fairly satisfactory definition of otherkin. Later in the review, Robertson tells of some groups that Kirby considers sub-groups of otherkin (otaku-kin and Elenari elves) and some overlapping groups (multiples and soulbonds). Notably, I see no mention of animal people such as therianthropes or furries.

Regarding Kirby's book itself, Robertson said,

"Despite her admonition that [Kirby's] aim was not to provide 'an exhaustive exploration of the Otherkin community' but rather to explore 'the dual influences of speculative (primarily fantasy) fiction and communication technology in the creation of alternative metaphysical systems', the book is nevertheless just that, with chapters devoted to how the Otherkin relate to these themes. Too much of the book is little more than a catalogue of related but not particularly relevant concepts and communities ..."

Robertson voiced disappointment about some insufficiently relevant material in the book, particularly a chapter that gave histories of mythological creatures, which did not contribute much to understanding otherkin or questioning religiosity.

I noticed that Robertson made a few errors in the review. Robertson misspells "Elenari Elves" as "Elanari Elves." Robertson also perpetuates the common misconception of conflating schizophrenia with Disassociative Identity Disorder.


David Robertson, "Review." Journal of Religion, Media, and Digital Culture 2: 2 (Sept 2013).
(That's the full article, in HTML.)
(That's a direct link to the full article, in PDF.)
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: For this article, none. The linked articles give their own content warnings.

August: An otherkin named Jewelfox wrote several essays about being otherkin and fictive. These are:

Jewelfox, "Realizing that you're a fictive." 2013-08-14. http://jewelfox.dreamwidth.org/76281.html
A personal awakening story.

Jewelfox, "When I say I'm fictive / median / otherkin." 2013-08-11. http://jewelfox.dreamwidth.org/2013/08/11/when-i-say-im-fictive-median-otherkin.html
On how other people misinterpret those self-descriptions.

Jewelfox, "Are therians, otherkin, and fictives real?" 2013-08-16. http://jewelfox.dreamwidth.org/2013/08/16/are-therians-otherkin-and-fictives-real.html
Observations and advice on the balance of one's inner and outer world.

I linked to these articles with Jewelfox's permission.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
(The linked article lists its own trigger warnings.)

August: A trans woman and otherkin in the otherkin community named Jewelfox wrote an essay titled "Why trans* people hate otherkin (and otherkin hate fictives)." Jewelfox explains that why people who have unusual identities tend to disparage other kinds of unusual identities, and why that doesn't help them the way they think it does. She argues that although they're trying to defend their own legitimacy, they're unknowingly supporting the system that oppresses them, in vain hope to get mercy from it.

You can read the whole article. There are good insights in the comments, and on this other post about the essay.


Jewelfox, "Why trans* people hate otherkin (and otherkin hate fictives)." 2013-08-07. Jewelfox. http://jewelfox.dreamwidth.org/2013/08/07/why-trans-people-hate-otherkin.html
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings: For this article, none. The linked article lists its own trigger warnings in its introduction.

August: An otherkin in our community, named Jewelfox, wrote an article this month titled "What does it mean to be otherkin?" Other authors have had difficulty trying to write a definition for otherkin (people who identify as mythological creatures), therianthropes (people who identify as animals), and/or fictives (people who identify as characters from fiction), because these self-identifications are individualistic and have surprisingly few beliefs in common with one another. Rather than attempting a definition based on spirituality or behavior, Jewelfox isolates three traits that she thinks are held in common by otherkin, therianthropes, and fictives alike. These three traits aren't spiritual beliefs or behaviors, but are aspects of a process: identification, explanation, and expression. Read Jewelfox's article to learn more about the reasoning behind this, and its impact on the social acceptance of these people.


Jewelfox, "What does it mean to be otherkin?" 2013-08-05. Jewelfox (personal blog). http://jewelfox.dreamwidth.org/74778.html
I linked to this with Jewelfox's permission.
[identity profile] hoyvinglavin64.livejournal.com
Tomorrow is the last day for my crowdfunding campaign for the otherkin/fictionkin-inspired short film Book Girl. The project has met its goal but we're hoping for as many donations as possible: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/book-girl
[identity profile] hoyvinglavin64.livejournal.com
I'm working to raise funds for a film project some friends and I are working on. It's inspired in part by otherkin/fictionkin issues so I'd think people here might be interested. Please donate if you can and if you can't, then please share it around and spread the word! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/book-girl
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for this article: description of trolling, harassment, hoaxes. Work-safe.

After James Cameron’s film Avatar came out, there was a sudden appearance of people saying they are otherkin who identify as Na’vi in spirit.  It’s difficult to tell which of the people involved sincerely believe what they say, or whether they’re just playing a prank to see what might be stirred up.

            The first mention of Na’vi otherkin appears to have been on the first of the month, in the thread “Hello, Na’vi Otherkin here” on the Otherkin.com forum.1  The newcomer, with the user-name Tirea Na’vi, mentioned having formerly identified as an elf with a tail.  Some of the reactions from the regulars were incredulous or hostile.  It made for a long thread, but I’d recommend reading it. It has some intelligent discussion about the issues that were being raised, which are better read in full than summarized.  There was also some ordinary flaming, common to most Internet forums.  Less than a week after the thread began, Tirea Na’vi was banned from that forum, along with a few other thread participants.2  

Also on the first of the month, Tirea Na’vi had created a Twitter account, a personal blog, and a community for Na’vi otherkin on Livejournal.com.  New Year’s Day was busy.  All of these sites have been quite active throughout January.

On the sixteenth, a blog was started that called itself the Na’vi Anti-Defamation League, which was ostensibly a defense of Na’vi otherkin, going over the top.  That blog admitted itself to be a prank on the eighteenth.3  

There has continued to be much discussion about Na’vi otherkin in various forums and blogs, including on sites that don’t ordinarily talk about otherkin.  

Identifying with fictional beings has been a controversial subject among otherkin for years.  When “fiction-kin” enter an otherkin forum, an unfriendly or mixed reaction to them is not unusual.  In the otherkin communities, the presence of Na’vi otherkin (whether sincere or not) has brought a few questions to the forefront of the conversations, especially this:  If we can accept identifying as creatures from myth, legend, and folktale, can we also accept people who identify with creatures or characters from fiction?  This isn’t a new question to the otherkin community, but it’s worthwhile for each of us to consider and come to their own opinion.

- O. Scribner

Sources )

May 2017

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