“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” Hi. I’m Gray Miller, sometimes known as “Graydancer”, and I work at Kink Academy.
Those words from Dickens have really resonated with me here at Kink Academy the last couple of months.
It’s been the best of times because we have been working with a brilliant freelance designer (the same one who revamped our sister site, PassionateU) to bring a facelift to Kink Academy. The site is five years old, and we are immensely proud of what we’ve built…but in internet years, that’s, like, FOREVER. We did market research, we asked our members (and those we hoped would be members) what they wanted, and we made it happen.
With change comes pain, though, and that can be “the worst of times”.
Let me break it down for you: Kink Academy is not, as you may picture, an office suite with spiffy leather-furnished offices, a coffee boi named Chris bringing perfect espressos to our high-intensity strategy meetings before we go to relax in our exercise center-cum-dungeon.
Ha. We wish! Kink Academy is mainly Princess Kali, the founder, owner and visionary guiding our direction from the Bay Area in California, and myself, working here in the Bondage Capital of the World, Madison, WI. We are lucky enough to have the occasional help of DoNotGoGently, a leatherwoman from Pittsburgh and other members and allies who do what they can.
Simply put, we’re a small business run by kinksters for kinksters. And like most entrepreneurs, we run into troubles once in a while.
The upgrade to the videos on the site? That ended up turning them all off for a few hours. To quote Monty Python: “We got better.”
We upgraded our payment processing system and it promptly broke, for no reason we could easily find. Then it worked again, but only for new customers. Our efforts to fix it triggered an audit by our processor company (who we LOVE because they did it fast and pretty painlessly). Finally we fixed it for legacy members, but found out that people who’d been members and wanted to re-subscribe couldn’t.
All of this was bad, because literally people were begging to give us money and we couldn’t take it! That’s fixed now, too, much to the relief of our landlords. In fact, the only remaining problem has to do with hotmail (if you have hotmail and want to subscribe, contact me, ok?).
During those troubles our customers were AMAZINGLY patient. While we’re privileged to be able to make a living helping kinksters have more and better sex, we sure aren’t rich doing it, and so the support of our members really helped us make it through. Like most entrepreneurs, we suffer from the curse of believing strongly in what we do, at the cost of the salaries we could be making doing the same type of work in a less controversial field.
It was the worst and the best of times, and there was one thing in particular that drove that home for me. As part of the upgrade, I had to go through and re-code every video post on Kink Academy by hand. That’s over a thousand entries, from the first with Jay Wiseman, Megan Andelloux, and others through the most recent ones with Mistrix, Topologist, Mistress Servalan, and…well, the list goes on for an embarrassingly long time. We’ve been so fortunate to work with so many great teachers, to pay them for their knowledge and time, and bring them on as affiliates so that your memberships continue to bring them money! How awesome is that?
That’s what went through my head as I did the tedious coding: “This is AWESOME. A huge library of kink knowledge, history, techniques…” I’ve looked, and I challenge you to find a more broad and diverse source of quality kink learning on the web. Seriously, I do, because maybe I’m biased. I see other resource sites, and I’ve contributed to them. But the Kink Academy is unique in my experience.
Now the growing pains are over, and the site is beautiful, clean, and sexy. We have a collection of free videos, we have regular blog posts, and for our members, amazing premium content, updated five times a week with new videos covering every kink we can legally manage.
We have tools you can use to create your own personalized playlist, picking out just the videos that you want from the teachers who speak to your kink specifically. It’s like having the ability to create your own kinky convention tailored just for you and your partner(s).
You can comment directly on the videos, and often the presenters reply directly to you. All the entries are tagged and categorized so that you can find your favorite kink or explore new ones for as long as you want, 24/7, all year around, on your computer, your tablet, your phone, alone or with friends.
I’ll be honest with you: Kali and I go to these cons, and we see people willing to pay hundreds of dollars for whips and the like – but unwilling to pay a fraction of that to learn how to use it. It’s strange, it is. A year’s membership costs less than a good flogger. Costs less than most conventions you’d attend to see the same presenters give one class – and we have hundreds of classes, available whenever you want.
We are immensely grateful for the people who have helped make Kink Academy what it is today. We want to continue to be part of your community, and to do that, we need your help. Try us out for a month – that’s hours of explicit kink education for the cost of a couple of movie tickets. Become a regular member, it’s even less. Three months of membership is less than a night out on the town!
If you’ve ever thought “Yeah, I’ve heard about the Kink Academy…” and been inclined to try it: we need you NOW. If you are looking for that great holiday gift, WE ARE IT.
If you know of a friend/crush/lust object who maybe could benefit from some kink instruction, D/s theory, leather history, or just plain hot sexy videos that engage mind and body…now is the time.
Just click below, and see what we’ve worked so hard to bring to you and your kink.