We've updated our site rules regarding mature content. This post details those changes along with the reasoning why.
Content Warning: the following blog post discusses PaperDemon's disallowance policies on sexual themes with regard to juvenile depictions.
The rules prior to today
Depictions of minors, whether sexual or not, were disallowed from the mature section, also known as the Red Curtain. However the rules did not have any specific guidance regarding animals, anthros, monsters, and species other than humans.
We previously disallowed any depictions of minors in the Red Curtain even if the context was not sexual. This meant that gore or other forms of mature content depicting a minor would not be allowed to be posted anywhere.
The revised rules
Our mature content rules have been clarified to disallow depictions of juvenile, adolescent, child-like, cutesy animals/monsters/anthros/characters/etc in a sexually suggestive or sexually explicit way. We base this on the visual proportions and ratios of the character, NOT on what is canon for the series, character, or species. For example, sexual content of My Little Pony characters, even adult ponies, would not be allowed because the proportions of adult MLP characters look juvenile.
We've softened the rules to allow depictions of minors and juvenile/child-like characters in the Red Curtain section as long as it's clear that the context is mature in some way OTHER than sexual and it isn't too disturbing as determined by our moderators through group discussion. Nudes of minors, whether with sexual context or not, continue to be disallowed. Sexual depictions of minors continue to be disallowed. For example, content akin to Happy Tree Friends would now be allowed to be posted in the mature section because it contains cartoon violence amongst cute animals without any sexual context.
You can read the official mature content rule document here.
Why the change?
As far as we know, we did not previously host any juvenile looking animals/monsters/anthros/etc sexual content in the Red Curtain section. Previously, we have added rules once someone crossed a line we hadn't yet defined or made a decision on. This is not the case for this revision; Recently, we had an inquiry as to whether we were ok hosting such content. After reviewing the content and doing some research, we made the decision not to allow the content.
We've made this change to our rules for the same reasons we previously revised our rules to disallow sexual depictions of minors. We're concerned that this form of content may attract a crowd that could pose a safety risk to our community members, and understand that this content falls into a legal gray area that we do not have the resources to navigate. Our content policy regarding juvenile animals/anthros/etc is consistent with Discord's community guidelines and Furaffinity's upload policy.
To be clear – We cast no judgment on those that create or consume this content. We understand that those who create this content aren't necessarily the same as those who consume it. We understand that it is common for victims of sexual violence to express their sexuality or process what happened to them through art. We simply are making the decision not to host it.
What will happen to my art?
As previously stated, as far as we know, this rule change does NOT impact any content currently hosted on PaperDemon, though there may be content we have missed. If your work is flagged, it will be removed and a moderator will send you a private message notifying you of its removal.
What you can do to help
If you do have submissions containing content that is no longer allowed, we ask that you please take the time to remove it. Otherwise, a moderator will remove it and notify you of the removal.
If you see any content posted that violates these rules, please report it with the [Report to Moderators] button at the bottom of the submission page.
If you have concerns or feedback about our site rules, the content we host, etc, please let us know in our Discord server in the #suggestion-box channel or send an email to [email protected]. We're always open to feedback on how we can balance freedom of expression while maintaining the safety and sustainability of our community.