Author Topic: FT Article on Furry  (Read 1050 times)

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Offline vernelka

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FT Article on Furry
« on: October 24, 2005, 03:23:39 pm »
An article from the British newspaper Financial Times:
Quote
FT WEEKEND MAGAZINE - Of All Things; Pg. 12
All The Rage in the US Business suits are not required at a Philadelphia conference where delegates slip into something furry and act on their animal instincts
By Jennifer Fried
Financial Times; Aug 20, 2005

A unicorn in a miniskirt is checking in at the front desk of the Wyndham Philadelphia hotel. The horn on her forehead points at the clerk as she digs through her purse. A Tony the Tiger lookalike saunters through the lobby alongside a man in combat boots. Near the hotel restaurant, three heavy-set men sit sketching winged creatures on napkins. One of the men has teddy bear ears emerging from either side of his fedora.

Welcome to Anthrocon 2005, an annual convention for "furries" - admirers and dreamers of anthropomorphous animals, many of whom assume animal identities and don ears, tails or even full-body costumes known as fursuits. A joke? A mental illness? No and no. Furry fandom is an identity, a lifestyle, and one that appears to be growing in popularity. This year's Anthrocon drew an estimated 2,800 attendees from all over the world.

The convention features furry art (both family-friendly and "mature"), furry story-telling and a furry charity auction. There is a furry masquerade ball and an awards ceremony honouring the furry community's best creative talents. This year's special guest speakers include Peter Laird, co-creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and animation expert Timothy Albee.

Outside of Anthrocon, furries can keep busy with furry chat-rooms, furry costume design and furry role-playing games. For some, yes, there is also furry sex. "There is that aspect of the fandom, but it's not as big as people make it out to be," says 25-year-old Heidi Deville Clark, a third-time Anthrocon attendee with a round, honest face. Deville Clark came into the scene a few years ago, but like most other furries, says she has had a lifelong fascination with animals who behave like humans. "Personally, I like the art, the costumes, the expression of creativity," she says.

For others at Anthrocon 2005, furriness is about shedding inhibitions. "Here I can be what I can't be in real life," says a 35-year-old computer programmer from Grand Rapids, Michigan, with closely cropped hair, tanned legs and a shy smile. "In my normal life, I own a successful business. I'm very responsible and all that crap." At the moment, the programmer is wearing khaki shorts, a collared shirt and sandals. After lunch, he will take off his street clothes, step into his custom-made, 20lb-plus, full-body fursuit, strap a saddle on his back and become "Fay Fox" - a gregarious carousel fox who gives rides.

Who are these people? The answer, according to Anthrocon attendees, is that furries are not much different from anyone else. Many furries make the case that furry fandom is merely an extension of the anthropomorphising that already permeates American society.

"We buy gasoline that is hawked by a two-legged tiger and another tiger tells us what cereal is GRRRReat," says Dr Samuel Conway, aka Uncle Kage, the 40-year-old Pennsylvania chemist who organises Anthrocon. "We put little bears wearing sweaters into our children's cribs. We name our sports teams after eagles and wolves and lions, and create man-like mascots to represent them."

Even so, furries have a hard time shedding their image as sexual deviants or freaks. On day two of the convention, a Long Island high school senior wearing a star of David necklace stands outside the Wyndham and tries to explain why he could never tell his parents about his alter-ego as a fennick fox. "They just wouldn't get it," he shrugs.

Nearby, an overweight woman wearing bunny ears smokes a cigarette and stares into the distance. It is mid-afternoon and her skin is starting to redden under the Philadelphia sun. The boy continues: "People think of furries as some sort of... " His friend, another high school senior standing beside him, finishes his sentence: "Like we're some sort of psychotic, furotic cult!"


Offline Eddy

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2005, 04:14:00 pm »
I like that article, it's nonbiased and makes an attempt to tell it how it is.

The furry community aint that well known here in Britain and hasn't had all the attacks it's recieved in the US media.

If more articles like that come out, it would make life a lot easier for furs everywhere.

Offline FireHazard

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2005, 04:56:42 pm »
Great find.  As I mentioned you-know-where, this is the furry news item I've been hoping for since I first started finding them.  We should pass this along; everyfur needs to see this!  Ms. Fried deserves a warm letter of thanks, I think. :lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox:/:lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox::lol-fox:

Offline Okami

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2005, 05:00:28 pm »
I agree. Nice find on the article. :wuf-;):

Offline Taris Quickpaw

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2005, 06:35:57 pm »
indeed, i intend to write a letter of thaks to the writer and editor.  great find
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Offline Eddy

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2005, 07:28:49 am »
You should write it on behalf of the whole group. Might be an idea to draw it to the attention of the folks of Yahoo as well, just so we can get everyone's comments on it.

Offline Simba Wula

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FT Article on Furry
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2005, 05:54:38 pm »
Thanks Ghost for sharing that with us I just wish more people would actually open thier minds more to this stuff so they wouldn't get all confused or angry at us.