about kink classes on Zoom

I’m gearing up to begin offering workshops over Zoom, and although I’ve made the decision that I’m comfortable doing so, I think it’s worthwhile to talk about the risks- especially if I’m going to be asking others to join me on Zoom! This is a excerpt from a post I made on my Patreon, lightly edited for this context.

I want to talk a bit about the Zoom platform. As the use of Zoom has skyrocketed in the current pandemic, privacy and security issues have come to light, and I think it’s important that everyone have the chance to make informed choices.

The Guardian has a summary of criticism of Zoom and if you’re on FetLife, you may have read any of a number of posts there detailing the issues. On Wednesday, [Zoom’s CEO made a blog post acknowledging concerns][https://blog.zoom.us/wordpress/2020/04/01/a-message-to-our-users/] and committing to a 90 day freeze on new features in order to focus resources on trust, safety, and privacy issues. Unfortunately, I am not currently aware of platforms which offer similar functionality without these problems.

You do not need a Zoom account to join meetings, so if you have not yet created an account, you may wish to think about whether you want to do so and what information you wish to provide. If you do already have a Zoom account you want to use for kink events, please take a moment to check what name you have provided, as it will be visible to other attendees.

One issue which is currently getting a lot of press is “zoombombing” which refers to unauthorized users entering meetings to harass the participants. I’ve looked over Frame Shift Consulting’s advice on dealing with this possibility, and I don’t anticipate it being a problem in classes I present.

I have personally made the decision that my interest in participating in kink events outweighs the risk to my privacy, just as I regularly decide that my interest in attending kink conferences outweighs the privacy risk of providing my legal name and contact information to registration volunteers. I hope that everyone reading is able to come to decisions that both safeguard your privacy to the degree you need and also support your need for education and community.

cancellations and other event news

Sadly, due to the covid-19 pandemic, my classes in Seattle at the end of March have been canceled.

The HEaRT conference in Austin at the end of May has also been canceled. However, they have already chosen dates for 2021: the conference will be May 21-23. I’m planning to be there and hope you can attend too.

I’m slated to present at Beguiled in Chicago at the end of June, but right now we’ll need to wait and see if that event is able to happen. They have currently suspended ticket sales while they wait for more information from their local government and their hotel. If it looks like the conference will be happening and ticket sales open again, I’ll definitely be posting about that!

This is a hard time for all the kink and sex-positive organizations we adore, so please do consider supporting them by attending online classes or just sending donations if you can. I’m exploring the idea of offering distance education, primarily as a way to support the Pan Eros Foundation here in Seattle. If you have thoughts on classes or other offerings you’d like to see online, please drop me a note about that.

I hope you’re well, and able to safely keep your physical distance from others while maintaining your sense of social connection!

HEaRT schedule is up!

The schedule is up for the HEaRT of Texas hypnosis conference! You can look at the pdf version or find out about the schedule app they’re using here.

I’m excited to return to Austin at the end of May! I’ll be teaching Slap Me Down: Face Slapping as Kinesthetic Induction, and will also be facilitating Sunday’s unconference. The unconference was a powerful and fulfilling experience last year, and is one of the things I’m most looking forward to this year.

February Hypnokink Enthusiasts’ Group is next Saturday!

Ordinarily, the schedule would call for Seattle’s Hypnokink Enthusiasts’ Group at Gallery Erato to have been yesterday, the fourth Saturday in February. However, this time we’ve changed the date and time to Saturday the 29th at noon. If you’re local, I hope to see you next week!

Bringing the Valentine’s spirit to Leap Year Day, we’ll be discussing and demonstrating how to incorporate hypnosis into your dirty talk. With a focus on intensifying and altering physical sensations, these tactics fit equally well in your sex and your SM. Then, we’ll take a darker turn, and explore how dirty talk can be a way to play with challenging sensations as well, from pain to confusion to creeping body horror. Finally, we’ll look at simple, lower-stakes ways to start toying with these ideas, and you’ll have time to pair up and practice if you’d like.

This is a Pan Eros Foundation event; CSPC membership is not required. You can find more info on the Pan Eros calendar or our FetLife event listing.

I’m particularly excited about the topic this month. Conversational hypnosis within sex and SM scenes is a topic dear to my heart, and the addition of body horror themes just makes it juicier.