- The title of this article is incorrect due to technical limitations. The correct title is #SoftPaws.
#SoftPaws is a furry-oriented chat channel located on the FurNet IRC network. It is a general chat channel with a non-specific rating of "Mostly Worksafe," meaning that "work safe" content is preferred but not rigidly enforced. #SoftPaws is hosted by Lymril who first opened the channel on YiffNet in September of 2001.
Keershang first opened #SoftPaws on YiffNet while using her secondary fursona of Lymril on September 29, 2001. At the time, "Keershang" was still Lymril's main fursona whom she kept on YiffNet's central channel, #Furry. #SoftPaws's initial purpose was to be a small personal channel for Keershang and her friends. Lymril chose the name "SoftPaws" as a diametrical opposite to the expression "iron fisted", and the connection between her two fursonas was not a secret.
Transformation and Growth
The year 2001 was a time of major political upheaval for both YiffNet and many users in #Furry. Lymril openly promoted #SoftPaws as an alternate general chat channel that anyone was welcome to join. In April of 2001 she abandoned both #Furry and her Keershang fursona, choosing to focus solely on Lymril and #SoftPaws.
In November of 2001, Elkay dissolved the YiffNet IRC network, which was subsequently replaced by FurNet. The bulk of YiffNet's former channels, including both #Furry and #SoftPaws relocated there. Ongoing political stress associated with the growing network and differing philosophies eventually resulted in many users leaving FurNet to join Anthrochat, a new furry IRC network founded by Simba in March of 2004. #Furry, and most of the other original YiffNet channels relocated to Anthrochat, while Lymril elected to keep #SoftPaws on FurNet. With the departure of #Furry, #SoftPaws was left as the largest general (non-adult, topic unspecified) chat channel on FurNet. FurNet's newer users, disinterested in old politics, chose to remain with FurNet rather than move to a new network. In search of a new general channel, many users gravitated to #SoftPaws.
#SoftPaws on FurNet
As of July 2014, #SoftPaws remains one of the most populated channels on FurNet with user numbers generally running between 100 and 130 throughout a typical week (See external link below for the most recent statistics). The overall channel content rating for #SoftPaws is an unspecified "Mostly Worksafe", meaning that a PG-13 rating is preferred but not rigidly enforced. Lymril, as channel founder, prefers to let her users' common sense be their guide rather than impose a rigid set of rules.
- Keershang/Lymril's personal IRC logs dated January 1996 through July 2014.