so it's exam season and as usual i have sunk into a pit of utter misery and despair and have lost sight of everything I have to live for, and ended up on deviantART.

Although I will not slander deviantART by calling it a sin-pit full of anthropomorphic animal porn and absolutely terrible fanart of Japanese cartoons I have to say that most of it consists of anthropomorphic animal porn, or, terrible fanart of Japanese cartoons. As a young citizen of this land we call the World Wide Web, I have found that the Internet is a lawless realm where all can traipse freely, dabbling in the arts and sciences on online forum boards and microblogging networks. In some cases, this results in great feats of crowd-sourced achievement and contributes quite a bit to the world. In other cases, bizarre things start to happen. Internet paraphilias are an example of this.

Rule 34 states that if it exists, one can find pornography of it on the internet. This has proven to be true in many circumstances, with some websites such as shadbase and furaffinity operating entirely on this principle, creating a hub for explicit content to suit the needs of the many fetish communities on the internet. I see no wrong in this; it's natural that in a globally-connected space people find shared interests and passions, and the fact that these can be sexually explicit is part of human nature. We are intrigued and sometimes titillated by what society considers to be strange and what some consider repulsive. This is fine, and has likely occured since humans were capable of sex, the exact date of which depends on which theologies you believe in. I can't go back in time and ask cavemen if they were into feet, so you'll just have to take my word on it.

A paraphilia is an experience of sexual attraction to atypical objects or scenarios. Sounds relatively normal, per se, and loosely defined by what people consider to be typical in the realm of sexual attraction. The internet, in a way, makes the existence of paraphilia communities possible. Instead of one individual finding that they have an interest in something, feeling that the interest is unnatural and being disgusted and ashamed of themselves, they can now go online and find other people that share the interest, and build a supportive community over time. Some of these interests are, from a different perspective, relatively common. Zoophilia, or the love of animals, expands on the concept of bestiality which, and we may be ashamed of this, existed before the internet. Similarly, fat fetishism is nothing new. From the ancient Mesopotamian statue, the Woman of Willendorf, to today's culture, we can see that prominent secondary sex characteristics in females represent femininity and fertility. Wide hips and large breasts have always been in fashion, and if this comes at the expense of a rounder midsection, nobody ever really cared much. Modern fat fetishism stems from these ideals, and the subsections of it that exist today represent the extremes of the spectrum. 

Expansion fetishism has, pardon the pun, ballooned in popularity through the existence of online media. Expansion fetishism is the sexual attraction to very rapid weight gain, the subjects of which can be both male and female. The unhealthy and impractical nature of this fetish in the real world allows it to flourish in online spaces, through discussion and art of those who support it. This fetish is a good example of one that can be traced back to what we consider natural and normal attraction, the attraction to female curves, while still being considered atypical in its extent. It also relates to emotional desires, such as keeping a partner sated and happy, and providing for them. Thus, the appeal of this fetish can be seen as somewhat logical. 

But will we ever lose sight of what even resembles natural attraction? This all makes me think about what's to come in terms of internet paraphilias. What's next? And what kind of experiences will new technologies such as virtual reality accomodate? What kind of rule 34-esue content will arise?

And will it involve robots?