New poly social networks

Two new poly social networks have been launched recently!

The first is Beyond Two, a poly dating and friendship site. Launched in September 2013, it uses a dating/Facebook format and is family-friendly. There are configurations on the site for every possible scenario. Membership growth has been steady and strong, with members all over the world, but predominantly in the U.S.

The second is Polyamory Network, a social network for anyone with an interest in polyamory. It is very new, having launched mid-April, but the owner has contacted large interest groups in hopes of spreading the word. All content can only be accessed by members.

Both sites are completely free.

Call for submissions: Stories from the Polycule

Dr. Eli Sheff, author of the recent The Polyamorists Next Door, is working on a new project: Stories from the Polycule: Real Life in Polyamorous Families. Her call for submissions reads, in part,

Are you a member of a poly family and willing to share your story (anonymously) with the world? Consider writing a brief entry for an upcoming edited book. Submissions can range anywhere from a few sentences to 10 pages long, depending on the age of the submitters, the format they select, and how much they have to say. You are free to submit essays, short stories, poetry, drawings, and photographs, or whatever else you can think of. All submissions will be anonymized, so no one will know who you are when they read the book.

Find all kinds of topic ideas and prompts for children, teens, adults, and elders, on Sheff's blog here. If you wish to submit something or have any questions, contact Eli Sheff at drelisheff@gmail.com.

The 3 types of mainstream poly story

To those already in the poly community, it is not news that the mainstream media has been talking about polyamory. But it matters because there is a snowball effect taking place. More and more mainstream media outlets have turned an eye toward polyamory, and Bitch published a whole run-down on their blog.

Erica Thomas purports that the rise in attention to polyamory began with the publication of "landmark books" such as Opening Up and The Ethical Slut, and is continuing in the literary world with new books such as The Polyamorists Next Dooras well as on TV with shows such as Polyamory: Married & Dating.

Thomas notes that when it comes to reporting on non-monogamy, stories tend to fall into one of three types: the Comfortable Distance Story, the Personal Profile, and the Slippery Slope. Most egregious is the Slippery Slope, in which writers and news outlets argue that, of course, polyamory will lead to all manner of immoral things.

The most amenable type of story is usually the Personal Profile, because, as Thomas explains,

These personal profiles tend to be the least sensationalized treatment poly families get. After all, they’re stories from the mouths of the people living them, so they can actually answer to a lot of the criticism and speculation in a way that’s practical and understandable. Often in these first-person pieces or profiles, the author spends much of the piece simply explaining how their style of non-monogamy works, and describing what their day-to-day looks like in the interest of combating misconceptions about their lives. The descriptions can sometimes read like celebrity lifestyle profiles, “Hey! They’re just like us!”

Slate has recently been publishing a series of first-hand-account blog posts, penned under pseudonym Michael Carey, about the author’s own exploration into polyamory . . . The series has been getting some less-than-stellar reviews via the comments section. The main complaint? The posts are “boring.” It’s a good sign that we’ve reached the cultural acceptance point where it’s possible for writing about open relationships to be banal.

It's an interesting -- and pretty spot on -- analysis of the way non-monogamy is treated in the media, with tons of links to various articles spanning a whole range of perspectives.

Read the rest on Bitch.

Military court accepts NCSF’s amicus brief in support of consensual non-monogamy

In March, the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom filed an amicus ("friend of the court") brief in a case involving a marine who engaged in a consensual threesome and was later convicted of adultery, attempted consensual sodomy, and indecent conduct. The brief argued that prosecutors on the case were ignoring the Lawrence v. Texas Supreme Court decision in which it was decided that moral judgment is not a basis for criminalizing consensual sexual conduct.

In April, the Navy and Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals accepted NCSF's amicus brief.

Dick Cunningham, NCSF's Legal Counsel, said, "This is an important brief in support of a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision -- Lawrence v. Texas. Prosecutors and courts have no right to impose a narrow view of sexual morality on consenting adults."

To see the full legal documents on this case, click here.