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News|Clothing|London|Latex flash sales

Flash latex sales by Libidex, Bondinage and Essential Latex

Friday, 26 September 2014

Libidex and Bondinage are both having flash sales this weekend around 2014’s last Rubber Cult. There’s also an Essential Latex sale to mark owner Heidi Patterson’s birthday, which she is celebrating at Rubber Cult.

Libidex’s off-the-peg department LatexExpress started its sale today (Friday 26) with discounts of up to 70 percent. Several different finish days and dates are quoted on the firm’s website, newsletters and ads, so all we can safely say at this point is that the sale finishes somewhere around the last day of September or first day of October!

Bondinage’s flash sale, with reductions of up to 25 percent, takes place for one day — Saturday 27 — at its London studio, between 3pm and 8pm. Full address is: Studio J Basement, Clarendon Buildings. 25 Horsell Road, London N51XL.

The Essential Latex sale offers 30 percent off any purchase over $100 from the label’s Etsy store, until September 29.

It has been an eventful year for Heidi Patterson, who was diagnosed with breast cancer not long after her last birthday, and underwent aggressive treatment for the disease.

“I am happy to say I’m fully recovered now,” she tells us, adding that she wouldn't have been able to sustain herself during that difficult period “without my great customers”.

Her customers can use the code CELEBRATEANOTHERYEAR to benefit from Heidi’s birthday discount this weekend. Why not catch her at Rubber Cult and order something in person?!

See link below for our report on Rubber Cult’s May outing, which also includes a preview of tomorrow’s gathering.


SALE MALE: Essential Latex owner Heidi with Christian, one of the customers whose orders helped sustain her through cancer treatment (photo: Jan FetishClubPix)
News|Legal|London|Itziar appeal

A THOROUGH BEATING: Femdom site owner Itzia (above) took on the UK’s website regulator and won

Dominatrix wins UK appeal against website regulation

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Performance artist and web dominatrix Itziar Bilbao Urrutia has won her appeal against an attempt in the UK by ATVOD (Authority for Television on Demand) to regulate her website as if it were a provider of ‘television-like’ video content.

Obscenity law specialist Myles Jackman, who assisted with the appeal, has described Itzia’s successful challenging of ATVOD’s authority as “a decisive blow for sexual liberties against the forces of repressive regulation and state sanctioned censorship”.

The solicitor, of London chambers Hodge Jones and Allen, provides pro bono advice to sexual liberties campaign group Backlash, which asked him to assist with Itziar’s appeal after she went to it for help following receipt of a “threatening” letter from ATVOD in June 2013. Backlash also funded advice from Ligia Osepciu, a barrister at Monckton Chambers specialising in telecommunications regulatory challenges.

Writing in his Obscenity Lawyer blog (link below), Jackman reveals that the appeal was actually decided some time ago, but publication of the result was embargoed until Friday August 15, when Ofcom (the UK’s communications industry regulator) finally published the decision on its website.

Itzia’s website The Urban Chick Supremacy Cell (UCSC) is one of a substantial number of femdom-orientated sites targeted by ATVOD since its foundation in 2010 as Ofcom’s designated co-regulator of on-demand television. ATVOD claims the legal authority to regulate and censor not only on-demand services such as ITV Player and 4oD, but also paid-for content on websites considered to be ‘tv-like’.

In June 2013, the regulator wrote to Itzia claiming she had breached two of its rules relating to the categorisation of her online content as TV on-demand, and a third rule about content that “might seriously impair the physical, mental or moral development of persons under the age of 18”.

In her appeal, she argued that the nature and duration of the video content on her site (the average clip lasts under 8 minutes), the small number of subscribers (fewer than 60) and the modest revenue from video viewing (about $1,000 a year) meant that her website could not be considered an ODPS (On Demand Programme Service) and should therefore not be regulated by ATVOD.

She also contended that her work was a performance art project that did not contravene the Obscene Publications Act, as ATVOD was implying. Her scholarly and witty riposte to ATVOD’s attempt to critique her work must have unnerved anyone in that organisation who assumed their target was just another semi-literate pornographer and/or sex-worker.

It may be that as many as 60 UK-based dominatrixes with paid-for video content on their websites have had their sites closed down by ATVOD, and Itzia considers the pursuit of this particular group of women highly suspect. She is quoted as saying: “Whenever I see who has been reported to ATVOD, it is usually material that could be classified as kink — especially femdom.”

Anyway, Ofcom upheld Ms Urrutia’s appeal, agreeing that her site did not constitute the kind of television-on-demand that ATVOD was established to regulate. This is certainly great news for the appellant, who is about to become a PhD candidate at Birmingham University, partly due to her UC-SC project.

It could also be welcomed by other ‘offenders’, who might now examine Itzia’s Ofcom judgement (link below) and discover that they, too, should not have come within ATVOD’s remit. Class action time, anyone?


News|Personalities|London|Joy Betts tribute

Joy Betts (Mistress Demonic) loses her fight against cancer

Tuesday, 5 August 2014


The London scene has been paying tribute to one of its most colourful characters — Joy Betts, aka Mistress Demonic — who died in hospital on Sunday while undergoing treatment for cancer.

Long time companion of Master Keith and hostess of the legendary Gate BDSM nights, Joy was first rushed into hospital on June 25, the day before her birthday.

To the shock of her many friends and admirers, she posted on Facebook four days later that she had been diagnosed with a brain tumour and lung cancer.
“But,” she assured her followers, “I will beat this. After all, I have butts to beat and balls to kick!!”

Back home on July 7, she was clearly feeling better, promising to fight like a trooper and issuing a typical Bettsian challenge to the disease: “Do your worst, cancer, and see if you can even begin to beat me.”

On July 16, just before seeing her neuro-oncologist, she admitted she was “a little apprehensive” but added that at least she hoped to know everything by the time she left.

Sadly she learnt something she did not want to hear: “There is a chance the brain tumour will not shrink, which if it does not, means no chemo for my lung.”

However, again in typical Joy style, she decided to pre-empt the hair-loss associated with therapy and do a sponsored head-shave at July 25’s meeting of The Gate, arguing that she might as well “get rid [of it] before it falls out”.

Her treatment began the following Monday, July 28, after which she posted: “The 1st *zapping* of radiotherapy is done! Only Tuesday to Friday to go !!!!xxxxx”.

The following day she said what an awesome time she’d had at The Gate “with so many of my wonderful extended family in one place at one time”.

She thanked everyone for their love and support, positivity, cuddles and giggles “but most of all… for helping me shave my hair off”. She declared the event “one of the most fun-filled nights of my life”.

So it was a tremendous shock to learn that on Thursday, after just three days of radiotherapy, she was found to have developed pneumonia from a chest infection.

Keith and the couple’s friend Claire, aka Atrum Dea, were at her bedside on Friday 1 when, according to Claire, “her brain started to shut down and she became unresponsive”.

“All we got was about two seconds when she woke, smiled and gave a wave,” Claire said. “She asked that no one know about her hospitalisation.”

On Sunday Joy’s condition deteriorated and she was put on a machine to aid her breathing. But after 14 hours, she had not responded to this or any other treatment.

“At 7pm,” Claire’s post continued, “[the doctors] decided that the only other option was to remove the machine and IV lines, give her some morphine and let her drift away. She lost her brave battle at 11pm exactly.

“Keith and I were with her holding her hands as she took her last breath. Both he and I are devasted. It was peaceful for her and she was neither in pain nor aware of what was happening.”

Adding that Joy had been “a wonderful lady and a true inspiration to me”, Claire closed her sad post by saying that funeral details would be announced as soon as known, and in the meantime anyone who wanted to could leave messages of condolence and memories on Joy’s Facebook profile.

Numerous touching comments have already been left from all corners of the UK scene and beyond. The opportunity to add to them is also open to anyone reading this.


Joy’s final goodbye will be held on Wednesday August 27 at 2pm in the North Chapel at Eltham Crematorium, Crown Woods Way, London SE9 2AZ. Details of the wake are being finalised — Gravesend Rugby Club is hoped for.

All who wish to pay their respects, whether or not they knew Joy in person, are welcome. A large turnout is expected.

Flowers are not required but instead donations can be made via the funeral directors to the Ellenor Hospice or Macmillan Nurses. Contact Horlock and Sons Funeral Services on 01474 352159 to make a donation.

Funeral dresscode: During Joy’s last few weeks she developed a fondness for lighter, brighter colours, with lemons and greens being favoured. Mourners are asked to honour this by wearing lighter or brighter colours if possible.


TOP + CENTRE: Joy, aka Mistress Demonic, at the Gate’s 2012 Christmas party (photos: Tony Mitchell); BOTTOM: Joy, sporting her new hair colour, with Master Keith at July’s London Fetish Fair (photo: LFF)
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