News:Mature cub fanzine readies second issue

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May 28, 2007
Softpaw #1 - Cute, but not innocent

There's a new furry fanzine making the rounds. You probably won't see it on the shelves of your local comic book store, though, or in any public library, since its prime attraction is pornographic cub art and stories.

Softpaw Magazine #1 was published in November of last year,[1] joining the catalog of furry dealer Rabbit Valley this February.[2] The magazine's retail price is $20—distinctly higher than smaller, black and white furry comics which usually sell for less than $5. Conversely, Softpaw's format is 8.5" x 11" with between 64-80 pages in full colour.

Softpaw editors Jery and Kiffin maintain that the magazine — mailed in unmarked plain envelopes — is entirely legal:

   
News:Mature cub fanzine readies second issue
Softpaw Magazine contains ... young looking characters who are entirely fictional and are over the age of 18. There's nothing wrong about publishing a magazine like that.[3] (see update)
   
News:Mature cub fanzine readies second issue

The pair seeks to raise US$12,000 through pre-orders and donations to cover costs associated with the next issue, ideally before Anthrocon 2007 where they will be participating as dealers.[4] As of May 27 they had $9,291, helped in part by a $5 discount on pre-orders and a pizza party at Further Confusion 2007 and Califur 3.

While laws in various countries differ, US law specifically permits works which are "distinguishable" from images of an actual minor.[5] However, many in the fandom feel that such depictions are morally wrong, or at best, place the fandom in bad light. Some groups, such as the now defunct Burned Furs or (active ) Improved Anthropomorphics group, have tried to decrease the impact of such interests in the fandom through a variety of methods, often controversial in themselves.[citation needed]

So far, Softpaw has gained relatively little attention outside its target market.[6][7] The increasing popularity of cub art has raised concerns, though, both inside and out of the furry community. All-ratings New Zealand art archive Cub Central was featured on Portal of Evil in March 2001.[8] More recently, Fur Affinity's community was split over the question of erotic cub art. Site administrators eventually decided that as no actual child was hurt by the depiction, and they allowed images of other illegal acts, they had no grounds to exclude it.[9]

Related news

Sources

  1. Issue #1 now shipping! - Jery Softpaw, Softpaw Magazine forums (November 15, 2006)
  2. Rabbit Valley now selling Softpaw Magazine - Jery Softpaw, Softpaw Magazine forums (February 28, 2007)
  3. Softpaw Magazine - FAQ and Legal (retrieved May 27, 2007)
    Note: As of May 28, the Softpaw FAQ entry on their website instead reads, in full:
    Softpaw Magazine contains comics, artwork and stories about 'cubs' which are fictional young furry characters. There's nothing wrong about publishing a magazine like that.
  4. An explanation of the Issue #2 funding target - Jery Softpaw, Softpaw Magazine forums (March 3, 2007)
  5. US Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 110, § 2256 (11)
  6. "(furry-related, of course)" - Shokuji, openpaws LiveJournal community (July 18, 2006)
  7. Fur, Jr. - Palmer, WTF, Inc. LiveJournal community (July 20, 2006)
  8. CubCentral -- Furry Pedophiles - Portal of Evil (March 6, 2001)
  9. FA Policy Notice - "Cub" Art - The Dragoneer, Fur Affinity forums (November 5, 2006)
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