There's A Website Dedicated To Stealing Furry Porn From Patreon Artists

A horde of pirates is undermining Patreon's financial structure, reposting paywalled pornographic images on an illicit website for free. The makers of these images are furious that internet denizens are putting their livelihoods in jeopardy to score free porn.

Illustration by Cupcake Creature

Yiff.Party has been around since July, 2015, but has picked up speed exponentially in recent weeks. How it works is simple. Users or bots subscribe to Patreon creators' accounts, allowing them access to content that's restricted to patrons who pay. After scraping that content, the users or bots upload it onto Yiff.Party's feed, where it's accessible to everyone with just a few clicks.

In the span of 24 hours yesterday, Yiff.Party's admin says users uploaded over 3,000 posts. Those posts mostly contain porn, both live-action and furry ("yiff" is a reference to furry sex), but all sorts of artists have been affected.

Yiff.Party's front page

A half dozen Patreon creators I interviewed say they're frustrated and angry. Art noveau artist Alice, who makes $US230 ($293) a month and estimates she relies on Patreon for a quarter of her income, says she feels "absolutely shattered" after seeing her content reposted onto Yiff.Party.

She noticed it on Tuesday, when a pledge to her account came up as fraudulent. A user in late December, she later discovered, had "copied my entire feed, including all of my public posts, all of my private posts, comments on those private posts, privately shared links" and more onto Yiff.Party. And that was just the beginning.

"Now that they have my feed and username in their database," Alice said in an email, "their site detects whenever I create a new post, public or private, and notifies its users." Now on Yiff.Party, anyone can access it without paying dues to Alice.

When Alice contracted Patreon about it, she, like others, said she was told to file a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown request to defend her content. It's a lengthy and labour-intensive process. Patreon users who say they filed DMCA takedown requests against Yiff.Party say they were ignored.

A furry porn artist who goes by Kadath says that Yiff.Party has stolen his and his friends' content for years. He makes $US3,600 ($4,587) off Patreon per month. To defend against pirates, Kadath started vetting all of his pledgers, which he says was a lot of work.

Scrubbing his subscribers looking for anonymous users with no icons, numbers for usernames, hotmail usernames takes time out of his day he could spend making more art. He has routinely made less money than he anticipated because subscriptions tied to Yiff.Party pirates were charged back or fraudulent.

Yiff.Party was originally an experiment, its admin, who wouldn't give his name, told me over email. It blew up on 8chan's furry message board. "The site's mission is simply to make paid Patreon content available for free," he told me. "We're not out to get creators or make them lose income." He just wanted to explore a way to bypass paywalls, he said. When asked whether his website hurts Patreon creators' ability to make a living, Yiff.Party's admin said he's not really sure.

He added that Yiff.Party is accepting donations because he has a full-time job and works on the site in his spare time.

Kadath's entry on Yiff.Party

In mid-2016, Patreon introduced a "charge upfront" feature that charged new patrons moments after they pledged. That was an issue for Yiff.Party. Earlier last year, they launched a feature that lets users who are already pledged to Patreon accounts share paywalled content. Users give Yiff.Party their login credentials and Yiff.Party's importer service automatically scrapes posts they have access to. On 8chan's /furry forum, users request specific posts or creators from one another.

Yiff.Party has been around for over two years, so why hasn't it been taken down? A Patreon spokesperson did not answer that question when I posed it, but said in an email, "We think this is awful, and our operations, product, and engineering teams are heads down taking both legal and technical action to block this theft," adding, "We won't accept this kind of behaviour from the bad actors of the internet, and will vigorously fight on behalf of our creators to protect their art."

When I posed that question to Yiff.Party's admin, he said that most creators "are relatively small so they're unable to take legal action against me."

Adri, another furry artist, is hurt less by the financial impact of Yiff.Party than what it means for the his profession. "Knowing that people out there would rather pirate my work than spare $US10 ($13) or even $US1 ($1) to support me making more work hurts a lot," he said. "It makes a lot harder to feel like what I do is worth the time and effort."


Comments

    Victimless crime.

      They've been using the DMCA requests to dox the artists on top of stealing their work so I wouldn't call it victimless.

    Please tell me what this has to do with either video games or otaku - Japanese culture?

      Kotaku has always had off-topic content, or are you new here?

        I've been here years and noticed more crap lately.
        But if you want to consume crap with no complaints then all the best to you. Enjoy.

          mate, it's about one off topic post for every 15-20 on-topic posts. It's not some epidemic.

          Besides, cosplay artists are affected by Yiff.party so from that angle this article still falls within the purview of Kotaku

            If stealing some amatuer furry porn images is news to you then that's great, I guess.

          If you don't click on articles you have no interest in then you never have to consume any crap at all. The title made it pretty clear what this was about, if you weren't interested why did you click on it?

            Nah you're right. This is hard hitting, good news..
            God forbid kotaku is critiqued.

              If you want 'hard hitting good news', there's always the Huffington Post. This is a pop-culture site, mate. Everything that doesn't involve North Korea is fair game.

                Oh, I reckon if North Korea had cosplay then we'd hear about it.

                  I believe they do, but Kim Jong-Un wins every year with his 'Glorious Leader Sailor Moon' cosplay every year, so it's not really worth reporting.

              where's your critique?
              I'd be interested if you had an actual point to make, but so far you've just complained about non existent glut of off-topic articles and an incorrect assumption that the article doesn't fall within Kotaku's scope.

              That's not critique, you came to a swimming pool and complained it was wet...

              You also drove up clicks and traffic to the story....which is kinda funny because that's what keeps these articles around.

          You may not agree with the furry subject matter (I don’t either), but I will not deny that a site stealing artist’s pictures is highly disconcerting, regardless of what the image is of.
          And if you’re asking how this relates to nerd culture then you obviously haven’t been to the “artist aisle” of most conventions. Some will apparently have adult content available upon inquiry and I could totally see certain anime & cartoon characters fitting the furry category.

      I guess you've missed the very many catgirls and other anthropomorphs in anime/manga?

      Sure it's a wide tangent but you can still make that connection. And besides Off Topics pop up every now and then on Kotaku. Not exactly new nor is it the worst of the problems lately (ie. the rise of more click bait drama articles or reposts)

      You don't have to read the articles. Just keep moving on. Duh.

    2016: I’m going to kill all your celebrities.
    2017: Here, have Donald Trump as the President
    2018: ... free furry porn, anyone?

    You do realize you have given yiff.party more user's now right? Hell they are practically thanking you idiots on their homepage now, so good job you made it slightly worse.

    Why on earth are you giving this website free advertising?! You seem to be taking the artist’s side on this, but then freely give out the name of the website allowing more people to find it an take advantage of it :(

    Fan art has been spread across the net regardless of the original creator's consent for years.

      Hey I don't support stealing from folks.......

      But I'm curious if any of these individuals can claim that the pornographic material that they themselves have consumed, was always legitimately obtained or paid for, or if they just whacked up the nearest free site an went to town like every other person in the bloody world!!

      Honestly curious, not dismissively so!!

        Apparently all these tube sites for porn are killing the porn industry as people are no longer paying legitimately for content.

          The porn industry has been on the brink of destruction since the first cave man painted two stick figures banging.
          (Also stealing prob began instantly when another cave man nicked a rubbing on a piece of bark xD)

          Seriously though, Tube porn may have cut the legs off the big production companies, but I've noticed that actors have more tools to manage themselves and create a career outside of larger entities.
          Many smaller actor driven companies have popped up, offering work and collaborative opportunities that cut out the massive corporate aspects.
          The smarter ones work with the tube sites, ensuring full clips are removed while providing teaser and cut clips to draw paying customers toward the full content.
          (Not to mention revenue sharing)

    Article failed to mention that the DMCA requests were being used to dox the artists as retaliation.

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