“Those evil-natured robots–The Flaming Lips, “Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Pt. 1”
They’re programmed to destroy us
She’s gotta be strong to fight them
So she’s taking lots of vitamins
‘Cause she knows that it’d be tragic
If those evil robots win
I know she can beat them
Oh Yoshimi, they don’t believe me
But you won’t let those robots defeat me
Hey there, my Kinky, Polyam Peeps! As I’m starting this article, it’s October 29th, and given the pace at which I write, it probably won’t come out until the first week of November, but Happy Halloween anyway! Halloween is BY FAR, my favorite holiday. I love it more than Thanksgiving and Christmas combined. Scary movies? Check. Lot’s of candy? Check. You get to play dress-up? Double check! Seriously? What’s not to love about this holiday???
So, in honor of the Fall Festival of Frights, I thought to myself “What could be a good scary topic to talk about?” Then I realized “What’s more terrifying than AI?”
Now, I’ve talked about AI before on this blog (remember that time I dated a robot?). Given the rising prominence of AI imagery, machine learning, and chatbots, I thought this might be a great opportunity to see what AI knows about kink and BDSM. Because AI learns by pulling data from multiple sources, including the Internet, the idea came to me that by allowing ChatGPT to write an article about kink, it would serve as a great proxy for the general overall collective sentiment and knowledge about the topic.
Before I show you the article (I promise, no spoilers), I will say I was nothing short of SHOCKED at what I found. See for yourself:
Title: Unveiling the World of BDSM: A Journey of Trust, Consent, and Exploration
BDSM, an acronym for Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, Sadism and Masochism, is a diverse and complex realm of human sexuality. It involves a range of practices and dynamics that are often misunderstood or stigmatized. In this blog post, we will explore BDSM, shedding light on its principles, emphasizing the importance of consent, and dispelling common misconceptions.
- Bondage and Discipline: Bondage involves restraining a partner physically, typically through the use of restraints, ropes, or other tools. It is often a consensual act of trust and surrender, with the dominant partner taking control, and the submissive partner placing their trust in them. Discipline can include a range of activities, such as punishment and reward systems.
- Dominance and Submission: In BDSM, dominance and submission are roles that partners willingly adopt. Dominants (or tops) assume control, while submissives (or bottoms) relinquish control. The power dynamic in these relationships is consensual and based on trust, with both parties receiving pleasure from their respective roles.
- Sadism and Masochism: Sadism refers to deriving pleasure from inflicting pain or humiliation on a partner, while masochism involves deriving pleasure from receiving pain or humiliation. Both are consensual activities, and it is crucial that all participants establish boundaries and safe words to ensure their safety and comfort.
The Importance of Consent
Consent is the cornerstone of BDSM and is a critical component of all its activities. Every participant must willingly agree to engage in BDSM practices. Communication, negotiation, and the establishment of boundaries are essential to ensure that all parties feel safe and respected. The use of safe words is also common in BDSM to allow participants to signal when they wish to stop or slow down. Without explicit consent and effective communication, BDSM activities should never take place.
Myths and Misconceptions
BDSM is often surrounded by myths and misconceptions, which can contribute to misunderstanding and stigmatization. Let’s address some of the most common ones:
- BDSM is abusive: BDSM is not abuse. It is a consensual exploration of power dynamics and sexual desires between adults. All activities are undertaken with the understanding and agreement of those involved.
- BDSM is about pain: While some aspects of BDSM may involve pain, it is not solely about inflicting or receiving physical discomfort. It’s about trust, control, and a wide range of experiences that can be both pleasurable and fulfilling.
- BDSM is only for certain people: BDSM is diverse and welcoming. People of all genders, sexual orientations, and backgrounds engage in BDSM. It’s essential to be respectful and non-judgmental toward individuals who practice it.
BDSM is a complex and multifaceted world of human sexuality, emphasizing trust, consent, and exploration. It is crucial to separate the reality of BDSM from common misconceptions. Above all, consent and communication are the keys to a safe and fulfilling BDSM experience. By understanding these principles and promoting open dialogue, we can contribute to a more informed and inclusive perspective on BDSM.
So, let me start by saying that I gave the AI ZERO direction. The only thing I told it to do was “Write me a blog post about BDSM”. Obviously, BDSM is a complex topic that can’t be distilled down to just 500 words. Nevertheless, the article did an amazing job hitting all the key notes. My one complaint is that it calls BDSM a “realm of human sexuality”. As I’ve said numerous times (and will shout it from the rooftops as long as anyone else will listen), BDSM is NOT inherently sexual. Yes, it often contains sexual elements, but at it’s core, it’s about power exchange.
What really threw me for a loop was how the AI chose to specifically call out the topic of consent in BDSM. Consent is the cornerstone to any BDSM dynamic, yet it never seems to be emphasized enough (probably because it’s so important, it never could be). The fact that the AI knew to talk about consent when so many humans don’t, gave me hope that somewhere, the message is getting across.
I was so surprised by the fact that the AI introduced consent voluntarily that I asked myself “What else does the internet know about it?” Naturally, I had to explore further, so I gave the AI a second set of instructions: “Write a blog post about consent”
Title: The Power of Consent: Navigating Relationships with Respect and Understanding
Consent is a fundamental concept that should underpin all our interactions, especially in the realm of personal relationships, intimacy, and even everyday social exchanges. It is the cornerstone of respecting individual boundaries, autonomy, and ensuring that all parties involved feel safe and comfortable. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of consent, what it means, and how it plays a pivotal role in building healthier, more respectful connections.
What is Consent?
Consent is the voluntary, informed, and enthusiastic agreement to participate in a particular activity or engage in a certain behavior. It should always be given freely, without any form of coercion, pressure, or manipulation. Consent is not just limited to sexual situations; it extends to all facets of our lives, from medical treatments to sharing personal information online.
Key Principles of Consent
- Voluntary: Consent should always be freely given. It should never be forced or obtained through manipulation, threats, or any other form of duress.
- Informed: To provide informed consent, one must have a clear understanding of what they are agreeing to. This means that all relevant information regarding the activity or decision must be communicated transparently.
- Enthusiastic: Consent should be enthusiastic and affirmative. It’s not just the absence of a “no” but the presence of a wholehearted “yes.” It should reflect genuine desire and willingness to participate.
- Revocable: Consent is not a one-time commitment. Individuals have the right to change their minds and withdraw their consent at any point during an activity.
- Specific: Consent should be specific to the activity in question. Giving consent for one activity does not automatically imply consent for another. It must be sought and obtained for each separate act.
The Importance of Consent
- Respect for Autonomy: Consent acknowledges and respects individual autonomy and the right to make choices about one’s own body and experiences. It reaffirms the principle that no one should be forced into something they do not want to do.
- Establishing Boundaries: Consent encourages open communication about boundaries. It provides a platform for individuals to express their limits and desires, creating a healthier and more respectful framework for interaction.
- Reducing Harm: By obtaining and respecting consent, we reduce the likelihood of causing harm, trauma, or distress to others. This is particularly significant in sexual relationships, but it applies to any interaction where one person’s well-being is at stake.
- Building Trust: In relationships of any kind, trust is essential. When individuals feel that their boundaries and well-being are respected, it fosters trust and deepens connections.
- Legal and Ethical Obligation: In many societies, obtaining consent is not just a moral obligation but a legal one. Failing to obtain consent can lead to legal consequences, emphasizing the societal importance of respecting consent.
When it comes to obtaining consent, it is crucial to prioritize clear communication and respect. Here are some best practices:
- Ask Clearly: Use open and direct language to ask for consent. For example, “Are you comfortable with this?” or “Is it okay if we…?”
- Check-In: Ongoing communication is essential. Make sure to check in with the other person throughout the activity to ensure they are still comfortable and willing to continue.
- Respect Boundaries: If someone says no or withdraws consent, respect their decision immediately without pressuring them to change their mind.
- Be Mindful of Non-Verbal Cues: Consent can also be conveyed through non-verbal cues, such as body language and facial expressions. However, verbal communication should always be the primary means of obtaining consent.
Consent is a cornerstone of respectful and healthy relationships. It empowers individuals to assert their boundaries and choices, fosters trust and open communication, and reduces the risk of harm. By understanding the principles of consent and practicing it in all aspects of our lives, we can build more respectful, empathetic, and harmonious connections with others. Remember, consent is not just a concept; it’s a fundamental and non-negotiable aspect of human interaction.
Let me just say that I should probably quit while I’m ahead and give up blogging, because clearly this AI is way better at it than I am. I love how it starts by mentioning that consent exists outside the world of sexual encounters (something we all learned too well during Pandemic). It talks about coercion and manipulation, and uses my FAVORITE word: ENTHUSIASTIC!!!
The AI then moves on to talk about the FRIES Model of Consent (although it uses different language), followed by a discussion about autonomy and boundaries (two more of my favorite words) and then brings it home with practical ways to obtain consent, including the importance of non-verbal cues (although it discusses how people can give consent non-verbally, when ideally it should be discussing how people can revoke consent).
Bottom line, not only does the AI know more about consent than most people I’ve encountered, it breaks it down in a simple, easy to understand way. If the Internet was the landscape from which it pulled its data, I admit that maybe my prior assumptions about the general level of knowledge around the topic may have been an underestimation.
So what exactly can be gleamed from this experiment. For starters, the information is out there. If an AI knows about safe BDSM practices and consent, it’s not that hard to learn. Second, along that line, it does give us humans a little less of an excuse. While immersing yourself in the community is the best way to learn, I still believe an important first step is a little education. Check out some websites, read a blog (this one, hopefully), pick up a book. Before you go out in the wild, it helps to learn the basics.
After all, you’re smarter than some bucket of circuits and wires…
Until next time, stay kinky, my friends…
–The Bratty Cat