Doing the research for this KinkRed Review, it’s hard to not to be touched by the honesty of KinkRed's creator, a small-time web developer who’s taking a DIY approach to BDSM dating. His site is still in the beta stage, but he’s so open about his future plans that you can’t help but want it to be a success. He launched the site after becoming disillusioned with the current crop of online kinky dating opportunities. He mentions the kind of issues everyone has had with crappy sites; the cost of premium memberships, fake profiles drawing in the punters and the general sense that a place is essentially a money spinner for its owners.

KinkRed Review: Free Fetish Dating


The about section is like a manifesto: It shows he’s been paying attention to the underhand techniques of other fetish dating sites and lets you know exactly how he’s planning to offer something different. He’s trying to get the entire thing off the ground single- handed, whilst having various other real life commitments, so unsurprisingly it’s unfinished. As a result, he’s issued a general request for help, so if you’ve ever fancied the chance to be in on the fetish dating action from a backend perspective, get in touch via the website.
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What KinkRed gets right:


Right now, even in its fledgling state, the place looks like it’s been well put together. The pages are rendered in the uniform colours of a sadomasochistic site—red and black—and it’s laid out in such a way that you can easily find your way around the little content that’s online. The advertising has been kept minimal and appropriate to the lifestyle. A side bar promotes both gay and straight bondage sites—perfect for the diverse BDSM community.

Kinkred.com is affiliated with both Kink.com, the US bondage porn site, and the globally popular networking site Fetlife. His connection with Kink.com seems to be quite personal: As part of the manifesto, KinkRed's creator talks about loving their work since it was being broadcast from ‘Peters apartment." With Fetlife the relationship is clearly more professional, though he does give a shout out to them for helping him test and promote KinkRed.

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Recruiting new members is what keeps a dating site alive so as an incentive, if you get in quick, you’ll be a premium member for life. The first stage in signing up is indicating your gender, orientation and status. There are multiple choices for each, including the brilliant ‘fluctuating/evolving’ option. Then there’s your location details and email to confirm, before you choose a nickname and get stuck in. It’s fast, glitch-free and gets you to the good bits without any hassle.

 

 

What KinkRed could work on:


Inside it’s a work in progress and seems to have been that way for while. In the section called Bugs and Site News, KinkRed's owner explains he’s hoping for a big update in August 2014, but then there’s no update on whether the update happened. The membership profiles are plentiful, but not many people are keen to add a photo, making it feel a little spammy. With acres of blank white boxes staring back at you, it feels like the lurkers have moved in, peeping from behind the curtains at what’s going on in BDSM land. Any images that are posted are mainly full on genital shots or studio pictures—during the KinkRed Review over five pages of members I saw just one identifiable photo of a person’s face.

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You can narrow down a search based on any number of preferences, from sexual orientation to age, to those who have a profile pic and other more advanced options like ethnicity and job. What becomes clear is that this site is not aimed at a UK demographic, most if not all profiles are in the US. In a 250 mile-wide UK search, based on ages 18-99 and every gender/sexual orientation possible, only one person popped up. On closer inspection that turned out to be me.

Other than a search, you can use a couple of basic utilities to make connections with other members of the community. Try sending a friend request, find out who your visitors are, or rate people’s pictures. Aside from that, for this KinkRed Review I couldn’t find anywhere to chat, discuss or share any kind of communication with the KinkRed community. This is something that Fetlife, for example, has perfected.

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We've all put projects on the back burner and then lacked motivation to follow them through and writing this KinkRed Review I get the impression that’s what’s happened here. The content of KinkRed is so completely at odds with the statement of intent at the front that it feels slightly disappointing. Hopefully more functions will be added soon that will give members a reason to stick around, participate and be active users and us to update our KinkRed Review, but for now visiting KinkRed is like visiting a ghost town.

 


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