Welcome to the afa!
FurFright has been cancelled. There will be no event in 2013. For more information, please visit http://www.furfright.org/.
AFA to produce radio show (update Nov. 25, 2013)
Greetings, furries! I have a special announcement: I will be producing a new radio show (recorded podcast) for the fandom beginning next month for the American Furry Association. We will have guest interviews and some other fun stuff too. The show will be hosted by yours truly. I know there are some other great furry shows out there like FurMedia and Fur What It's Worth, but this one will be different. Those programs are rather like watching "The View" on television, while The AFA show will be a bit more of an NPR style. The intent is to be informative, interesting, and fun for furries worldwide.
Another difference is that the AFA show (no title yet) will include commercials. Furry commercials. So, I am looking for people to provide 30- or 60-second audio commercials for the program. Since this is an introductory trial period, there will be no charge for the first episode or two. You provide the commercial and, if approved for broadcast, it will go in the show during one of the breaks.
This will be my second radio show, actually. My first was a show about animals broadcast online called "MI Menagerie" because it was produced in Michigan and was mostly about domestic animals and wildlife in that state. I got to be a pretty good interviewer, if I do say so myself.
Some of the guests I plan to interview are Mark Merlino, who will tell us about the early days of the modern fandom and his involvement in it, Matthew Geddes, who is working on producing a live furry drama, and a very skilled fursuit maker whose name I won't mention yet because I'm still waiting to hear back.
The podcast will be published on our website, www.americanfurryassociation.org, sometime in December. Hope you'll give it a listen!
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE (September 21, 2013)
by Grubbs Grizzly, President, AFA
Why have a national organization for furries?
We've spent almost the last two years working on one here at the AFA: writing bylaws and goals, raising money to apply for nonprofit status, working on this website, designing the logo, creating a website, setting up a corporation, charter members debating what we should be working on, etc. Once in a while it's good to stop for a moment, take a deep breath, and re-address our purpose for existing (even though we're sort of not existing quite yet).
As some of you may know, I write the "Ask Papabear" advice column for furries. A lot of the letters I get are issues about personal relationships and such, and many more are about being a furry. A lot of people write about their problems "coming out" as a furry to parents; others write about how hard it is to find furries in their area; some ask about fursonas and fursuits; others are new to the fandom and wonder how to get involved.
That's what inspired the idea for the AFA. You see, the fandom has grown by leaps and bounds over just the last 10 years. Attendance at furcons is growing exponentially, and new furcons are added every year. The fandom is also becoming more diverse. When the modern furry phenom began in the 1980s, it was about a bunch of sci-fi and fantasy buffs getting together and talking about books, comics, and films that featured anthropomorphic characters. Well, as you can see, it has grown way beyond that.
It's great that we've become so diverse and complex as a fandom, but this has made it increasingly difficult to connect as a community. I feel, anyway, that furries are becoming somewhat fragmented: fursuiters over here, artists over there, therians and otherkin in another corner, others getting lost in cyberlands like FurryMUCK or SecondLife, Bronies sort of in and out depending on who you talk to, and so on. A lot of people don't know where they belong or even IF they belong.
So, a BIG goal of the AFA is to have a central starting point where everyfur can get his or her bearings. Hopefully, as word gets out, furries will know they can come here first, and, as members, gain a sense of belonging.
Also, there is so much furry stuff on the Internet (some of it awesome, some of it, well, kind of crappy), that it can be overwhelming.
Another purpose of the AFA, then, is to try and organize this tremendous amount of information in a way that it can be easily found, and provide furries with the best stuff to go to on the Web when they are looking for information, art, social sites, etc. We've already started this with our guide to cons and meets and the calendar.
Thirdly, we wish to be a service to help promote the furry arts, whether it be fursuit making, drawing/painting/digital art, videography, performance arts, crafting, or writing. There are a lot of talented furry artists out there, and we will be working to make the public (furry and nonfurry) more aware of their works, as well as (we hope) creating a fund to allow us to award grants for furries to pursue their love of the arts.
Finally, there is the goal of outreach between furries and nonfurries, including the media and families of furries. The AFA's fourth purpose is to serve as a liaison between the two, creating brochures, possibly videos, and serving as a source from which the media can obtain accurate information about the fandom.
Those are the AFA's goals, gentlefurs. We're still trying to gauge whether furries, by and large, even WANT something like this. I would hate to go to all this effort just to get a big collective shoulder shrug and a noncommittal "meh." But I am hoping that furries will get excited about the AFA and want to help and participate. That would be wonderful! I really want this to work and to create an AFA that will benefit furries everywhere.
Thanks for reading this, and write to us with your comments and suggestions.
Fursona Database Test Is Up (September 18, 2013)
Okay, furs, this is admittedly rather crude still, but it works! Go to Members > Furry Resources > Fursona Database Form > Fursona Database and you can see a searchable database (only 2 entries right now).
It needs work: better design, etc., but the dang thing works! This is just a test of what we hope will become a huge database of people's fursonas. It's a way of creating a record of your individual character and includes the ability to add a drawing or photo.
Not sure if everyone can access the Fursona Database Form yet. Would kind of like people to check it out, too. Let me know if it asks for a password.
Whether or not you are an AFA member, we want to hear from the furry community. Tell us what YOU would like to see in a national organization that benefits furries everywhere!