May 02, 2009 04:01am
CSC'S 2009 Live Masturbate-a-Thon
Source: The Center for Sex & Culture
by: Company Press Release
(SAN FRANCISCO, CA) -- The Center for Sex & Culture, originator of the live Masturbate-a-Thon, will hold its 10th annual fundraising and consciousness- raising event showcasing solo sexuality on May 2, 2009 at its 1519 Mission Street suites and the building's adjacent theatre.
Hosting the event and anchoring its live webcast will be Good Vibrations Staff Sexologist and CSC co-founder /executive director Carol Queen, Ph.D. Queen will be joined by celebrity hosts, including Sister Roma of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, Inc., performance artist Kirk Read, and popular plus-size erotic performer April Flores, a.k.a. Fatty Delicious (http://www.fattyd.com/).
Other sponsors include Unvanilla.com (providing the live Internet streaming feed and selling both Masturbate-a-Thon and Unvanilla T-shirts to bring additional sources of donations to the CSC), as well as adult toy distributors Lelo (http://www.lelo.com/) and Tenga (http://www.tengashop.com/).
Doors will open at 10 am for and 11 am start time for competitors seeking to best the current world time record (currently 9 hours and 33 minutes for males and 7 hours and 6 minutes for females), and the door time for non-competing masturbators is 2 PM. Participants must bring pledge forms indicating friends have agreed to pledge them for masturbating; or they may pledge themselves, at a minimum amount of $20. Paying voyeurs may begin arriving at 11 am for the first seating ($15/ticket, good for the first half of the event); the second seating is at 4 PM and the ticket price will be $25.
Good Vibrations will show its Independent Erotic Film Festival selections for the enjoyment and erotic inspiration of the participants (www.gv-Ixff.org). The video program will show twice, one per voyeur seating; it is scheduled at 2:30 and 6 PM. Other entertainment, provided by some of San Francisco's many erotic, burlesque, and musical performers who volunteer their time at the Masturbate-a-Thon, includes singer/songwriter Mark Growden, adult performer and showtune parodist Tom Orr, author/performance artist Kirk Read, dance instructor and expert pole dancer Catherine Rose from Slinky Productions, and Fellatio Brown of Boylesque, San Francisco's male burlesque troupe. (Other acts are still being booked.)
The event is expected to last until approximately 9 PM and will be webcast live --to over-18 viewers only-- from 4 to 9 PM. Masturbate-a-thon.com, the site devoted to the event, historically receives a significant spike of interest and web traffic just before and on the day of the Masturbate-a-Thon. In 2008 www.masturbate-a-thon.com rose to approximately number 35,000 out of six billion websites as word of the event spread and the curious visited the site for information; between 30,000-60,000 people watched the webcast for all or part of its duration. The Masturbate-a-Thon has been featured in movies and television programs all over the globe.
In 1995 Good Vibrations, San Francisco's sex-positive adult toy shop, laid the groundwork for the Masturbate-a-Thon by creating National Masturbation Month as a protest (and consciousness-raising event) upon hearing that then-president Bill Clinton had fired Surgeon General Dr. Joycelyn Elders for saying that masturbation ''perhaps should be taught'' about as part of teens' sex education curricula. Good Vibrations staff members were aghast that a sensible statement had led to Elders' firing and realized that the culture as a whole, especially mainstream America, needed more information and comfort about masturbation, one of the most basic and safe forms of sexual behavior there is.
Masturbation Month became an annual event and in 1998 Good Vibrations upped the ante with the Masturbate-a-Thon, the result of a staff brainstorm. Good Vibrations' Masturbate-a-Thons were, like most masturbation, private: participants gathered pledges in advance, masturbated at home on National Masturbation Day, and collected and sent their pledges to Good Vibrations or another sponsoring entity, which in turn remitted 100% of the proceeds to charity -- generally sexual health and sex education non-profits.
GV Staff Sexologist Carol Queen was the primary media contact for the Masturbate-a-Thon, and over and over again fielded press requests to attend the event. But of course there was no one public event to attend (though a group of early adopters in Salt Lake City had staged a small, private live Masturbate-a-Thon as early as 1999, no press was invited). In 2000 Queen and her partner Dr. Robert Lawrence had recently started the Center for Sex & Culture and felt they finally had an infrastructure that could create a live, group Masturbate-a-Thon.
The initial one, an event attended by about 75 people and held in an adult gay theatre, was attended by Portland, or activist Darklady, who has since hosted an annual benefit Masturbate-a-Thon there. (Though not an official Masturbate-a-Thon because it allows partner play, we salute Darklady's Portland event for being a fun, masturbation-positive zone.) Other Masturbate-a-Thons have been set up for TV and hosted for small groups in private homes, and non-live events have continued to be held every year during National Masturbation Month, most recently at Eastern Illinois University, raising controversy at that school.
In 2006 the Masturbate-a-Thon went international. Queen and Lawrence were invited to join British activists to create one, benefiting sexual health charity Marie Stopes International, in London. Nearly 400 people attended. Sexologist Pia Struck organized an official Masturbate-a-Thon in Copenhagen, Denmark in May 2008 --resulting in at least one new world's record -- and will hold its second one on May 30, 2009. Last year's funds went to the Danish office of Ippf.org, Sex & Samfund, and Aids Fund, and this year's Copenhagen funds will go to Sex & Samfund again as well as Sex-expressen: medical students volunteers giving sex education in schools. Enquiries have been received from other countries as well and we fully expect more live Masturbate-a-Thons to be organized.
Several world records are associated with the Masturbate-a-Thon:
--The 2008 winner of ''Longest Time Spent Masturbating/Male'' (and also the World Record Holder in this category) is Mr. Masanobu Sato -- representing the Tenga company, and visiting from Tokyo, Japan. (We expect Mr. Sato back on May 2 to defend his record.) Mr. Sato masturbated for 9 hours and 33 minutes.
--The winner of ''Longest Time Spent Masturbating/Female'' is Ms. Kitty Kat, who masturbated for 7 hours and 6 minutes at the 2008 SF event.
--The record for ''Most Orgasms/Male'' is Michael Hariprem -- at 31 climaxes -- set in San Francisco in May 2008.
--The winner of ''Most Orgasms/Female,'' Pernille, came 94 times at the 2008 Copenhagen, Denmark event.
--The winner of the 2008 ''Longest Distance Come to Come'' in San Francisco was Morihiro Taneichi from Tokyo. A Japanese citizen also holds this record in Denmark; dare we imagine Japan will be the next country to field a Masturbate-a- Thon of its own? The all-time record is held by a woman who came to the 2006 San Francisco event from Hong Kong, a distance of over 6000 miles.
--Each year a ''Most Money Raised'' trophy is also awarded; we believe the world record in this category is held by a Londoner, but we did not receive official income results from that event. At some Masturbate-a-Thons a distance competition is also held.
--CSC is interested in establishing records for transgendered participants as well, but so far has not hosted self-identified trans participants who wished to compete.
How the Masturbate-a-Thon Works
Participants can pledge themselves, but are encouraged to collect pledges from others -- an important part of the Masturbate-a-Thon is its focus on making masturbation a less hidden topic of conversation and an unembarrassing sexual choice. Friends can send pledge money with the participant or send it after the event to the Center for Sex & Culture. Participants without pledge forms must pledge themselves at a minimum amount of $20. Each participant can decide whether to appear (masked or not) on the live webcast, and people choosing not to do so have a room set aside with no press or photos allowed.
A special category of participant, Featured Masturbators, provide photos of themselves for the website so that interested web visitors can pledge them via credit card or check. 2009's Featured masturbators include CarnalNation editor-in-chief Theresa Ikard (http://carnalnation.com/users/theresa-ikard); indy porn sensation Madison Young (http://www.madisonbound.com/); San Francis! co performance artist Sadie Lune (http://www.sadielune.com/); Fantasy Makers housemother Lorrett (http://www.fantasymakers.com/); and CSC director Carol Queen, who notes that she is also a proud member of the Good Vibrations Masturbation Hall of Fame.
Voyeurs will be allowed (as space allows) into a special audience seating area. Two voyeur seatings are planned: Paying voyeurs may begin arriving at 11 am for the first seating ($15/ticket, good for the first half of the event); the second seating is at 4 PM and the ticket price will be $25. (Voyeurs may purchase tickets for the entire event for $40.) Voyeurs will not be allowed to enter the masturbation arena; they must remain in the seating area.
The live webcast will commence at 4 PM and last 4 to 5 hours. It will be available at www.masturbate-a-thon.com . All participants must provide ID to prove they are over 18; those who will be seen on the webcast or documented by photographers must fill out a 2257 release using their real name, though stage names are an acceptable way for participants to identify themselves to others at the Masturbate-a-Thon.
Those who are too shy or too distant to attend the Masturbate-a-Thon, organizers note, can still participate in the event. ''Download your pledge form now; ask appropriate friends to pledge you for a penny, dime, or dollar a minute, and toss off for a write-off,'' says CSC co-founder Robert Lawrence. ''After all, in this economy it's the cheapest fun you can have!'' (you can attend the event, or do it privately at home and then remit pledges to the Center for Sex & Culture.)
About the Center for Sex & Culture
The Masturbate-a-Thon is the largest annual fundraiser for the Center for Sex & Culture. CSC's mission: To provide judgment-free education, cultural events, a library/media archive, and other resources to audiences across the sexual and gender spectrum; and to research and disseminate factual information, framing and informing issues of public policy and public health. The Center for Sex & Culture is a 501(c)(3) non-profit; donations are tax-deductible. It has been in existence since 2000 (and had been in the planning stages since 1994), though its first location did not open until late summer of 2004.
Founding director Carol Queen, Ph.D. addresses how important the Masturbate-a- Thon is to the Center: ''Especially in a year of tightening resources for non- profits, large benefit events that draw public interest, participation, and donations are crucial. But as always, the Masturbate-a-Thon is far more than just a fundraiser for us -- it's a way to continue the discussion about sexuality, pleasure and masturbation that Good Vibrations began in 1995 with the first National Masturbation Month. It's also an event addressing a nearly- universal activity, so our talk of masturbation is relevant to people of all orientations and genders.''
The Center for Sex & Culture has received three Best of the Bay awards: San Francisco's Best Sex Education Resource in 2008; the Erotic Reading Circle won a Best of the Bay for Best Erotic Resurrection in 2007, and the first was Best Emerging Sex Nonprofit, in 2005. SF Weekly also honored CSC in 2006: ''Best place to view porn and still feel like an intellectual''!
Support for the Center for Sex & Culture is tax-deductible; checks can be mailed to 2215-R Market St., PMB 455, San Francisco, CA 94114, and credit card donations can be made via its website. CSC sends a twice-monthly email calendar of events, which can be joined via the sexandculture.org website. Individuals not on CSC's press list who wish to receive occasional releases about Center- related news may email firstname.lastname@example.org for inclusion.
CSC Thanks Its Kind Sponsors...
Organizing and holding the Masturbate-a-Thon would not be possible without the generosity (in time and energy) of its many volunteers, and of its key sponsors. Good Vibrations allows CSC to use and monitor its original concept (particularly in its live manifestation, which it has kindly allowed CSC to develop), and assists CSC in getting the word out. Unvanilla (unvanilla.com), dedicated to making quality clothing for everyone who likes their life a little bit different, makes its media team available to webcast the Masturbate-a-Thon and its shirt printing resources available to press the Masturbate-a-Thon shirts. Lelo (http://www.lelo.com/), purveyors of high-quality, Euro-designed vibrators, brings its pleasure products to spur participants to new heights. Fleshlight will be present (http://www.fleshlight.com), hopefully having fielded a team to participate. SacredTouchSchool.com will also serve as a sponsor, providing onsite masturbation education and coaching. Other sponsors include the Garden of Ian, the Lusty Lady Theatre, and Hathor Lubricants.
Sponsors, as well as additional Featured Masturbators, will be added as they confirm; please see www.sexandculture.org for updates or to become sponsors, features, volunteers, or press attendees. (Members of the press desiring to attend the Masturbate-a-Thon should see http://masturbate-a- thon.com/pressinfo.php.)
Event At a Glance
What: The Live San Francisco Masturbate-a-Thon
When: Saturday, May 2, 2009; doors open for competitors at 10 for an 11:00 start time; voyeurs (first seating) also at 11 am; for regular participants 2 PM; for second voyeur seating 4 PM. Event expected to last until approximately 9 PM.
Where: 1519 Mission (near 11th), San Francisco How much: Except for Featured Masturbators, each participant must pay/pledge a minimum of $20 or bring a filled-out pledge sheet with pledges from others. 1st voyeur seating is $15; 2nd voyeur seating is $25. Online access is free during the event at http://www.masturbate-a-thon.com and may be available online thereafter; details are still being finalized.
Performing: Featured masturbators, including April Flores, the Lusty Lady tag team, CarnalNation editor-in-chief Theresa Ikard; indy porn sensation Madison Young; performance artist Sadie Lune; Fantasy Makers housemother Lorrett, CSC director Carol Queen, and Masanobu Sato. Performing will be Mark Growden; Sister Roma; Kirk Read; Fellatio Brown; Catherine Rose; more performers and features still being added. Good Vibrations will show its Independent Erotic Film Festival selections (www.gv-Ixff.org), showing twice, one per voyeur seating, scheduled at 2:30 and 6 PM.
Benefits: The Center for Sex & Culture's administrative functions and programming. Website/s: http://www.masturbate-a-thon.com and http://sexandculture.org
Dr. Carol Queen