29 de outubro de 2020

“Twitter MAPs”: how did we get here?

Twitter recently made a rule against propagating attraction to minors as a sexual orientation or identity, which is no longer allowed on the platform. This is after a couple of years of tolerance to MAPs ( minor-attracted people ). For many, it is impressive that such tolerance happened in the first place. A day or two after I heard this, I saw the interview given by Gilberto Gil to Estação Sabiá, in which he says that no movement in a progressive direction is irreversible, because the reactionary forces are permanent. As long as they do not cease to exist, such forces will eventually find an environment conducive to their growth and propagation. I’m not saying that the Twitter MAPs are reactionary, but such an observation by Gil is interesting because the movement for the acceptance of attraction to minors is permanent, dating back to the fifties at least.

So, maybe I can explain how this amount of acceptance came about and why I think it cannot be easily reversed.


Boychat is one of the oldest communities of the Internet. In it, boylovers (adults with a preferential attraction to boys) get together to have legal discussions. No illegal activity takes place on Boychat , so it continues to exist over the decades. When the Internet was young, Boychat was there. It is not a recent creation. This is visible because Boychat is a bulletin board system in the 21st century.

In that place, there was a guy who, although wanting to stay within the law, felt he couldn’t do it without help. This is Michael Melsheimer. He sought such help, without finding it. One day, he gave in and did something he shouldn’t have done, ending up at court because of it. There, he argued that he only gave in to his impulses because he had not found effective treatment that would allow him to live within the law. This man would later open B4U-ACT .


The B4U-ACT project is a collective effort between MAPs, scientists and therapists in the pursuit of two goals:

  1. Enable the well-being and quality of life of MAPs and
  2. Help MAPs in the task of staying law-abiding.

It is not known where the term “MAP” came from, but it was this organization that popularized the term, which has been used by them since its founding in 2003. To achieve these goals, B4U-ACT uses three ways:

  • Serving as bridge between MAPs and psychologists certified by the group, so that those who want medical help can receive it;
  • Serving as bridge between MAPs and scientists, so that scholars can conduct research with affiliated MAPs and
  • Encouraging projects to reduce social stigma related to a taboo attraction.

So far, so good. They also have a mutual help forum, like Alcoholics Anonymous, but for pedophiles and hebephiles, which operates at another address. They also point to other aid groups, if the MAP is interested, such as Lifeline .

But its founder died. He was succeeded by Richard Kramer. And this is where things get very interesting.

DSM Symposium.

In 2011, it was agreed that the Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders , then in its fourth revised edition, had to be updated. Kramer then sent a letter to the group that would do the review, arguing that the scientific criteria that underlie the entire manual are strangely “overlooked” when it comes to the chapter on paraphilias. Scientists who knew about Kramer’s initiative began an effort to use this update as a means of making the future DSM-V more scientific. With regard to paraphilias, B4U-ACT took slides , summaries and articles relevant to the attraction to minors and which would be presented at the review event, the DSM Symposium. All that material is still on the B4U-ACT website today.

It was concluded that something can only be considered a disease if it harms the person or others. But B4U-ACT and other subjects who worked with or were interested in the matter drew attention to the existence of pedophiles who both remain within the law and see their attraction as an innocuous part of their personality, without suffering because of it. With that, pedophilia left the manual. Exactly: pedophilia is no longer considered a disease, since pedophilia is a mere attraction that does not necessarily bring harm to the person or those around him. But the diagnosis of pedophilic disorder was also created: the person is ill if his pedophilia is a cause of discomfort or if he is led to commit an illegal act as a result of his attraction. Only then he can be considered mentally ill. If the pedophile is not necessarily sick, it follows that he is normal and must be included in society, enjoying all the rights inherent to the human person, as long as he can remain law-abiding and at peace with himself.

Sexual orientation.

Due to an error in writing the text of the DSM-V, people who read the new version of the manual were shocked to see that the text suggested that pedophilia is a “sexual orientation”. They probably wanted to type “sexual attraction”. Although the American Psychological Association has retracted and corrected its error, many MAPs had clung to the idea that their attraction is an “orientation”. That’s because liberal laws protect people from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Despite the error, some researchers actually asked themselves: “but what if?”. One of them was Michael Seto. In an article published in 2012, he states that sexual orientation is more complex than commonly conceived. To keep things simple, think it as a Cartesian plane, with the X axis representing gender and the Y axis representing age. Other researchers followed Seto’s observations and came to the same conclusions. Gradually, the idea that the age of attraction is a component of sexual orientation has become increasingly popular in academia. Associated with this is the idea that there are MAPs who fall in love with children or adolescents, which shows that the only difference between MAPs and the “normal” subject is the age considered attractive. If so, such attraction does not necessarily involve feelings of hatred, domination or sadism, just how such desires are not inherent in heterosexuality or homosexuality. Also because of such love, many MAPs prefer to abstain from relationships with children and adolescents, fearing that something could go wrong or that the loved one could suffer any negative consequences. The creation of Virtuous Pedophiles, a collective of MAPs that pledges to remain within the law, but also resists changes in the law (considering such laws necessary) makes it easier to accept this fact.


And it is only now that we arrive at Twitter. MAPs started to log into Twitter and use it like anyone else, as a platform for expressing their own ideas. Since such MAPs denied involvement in illegal activities, even when advocating changes in the law, there was no evidence against them that could ban them.

And so it was. Until recently, when Twitter gave in to pressure from other users and edited a new rule, according to which arguing that attraction to minors is an identity or sexual orientation will not be tolerated. The problem is that this jeopardizes the accounts of scientists and philosophers who use Twitter to comment on their research and conclusions, many of which involve conceptualizing attraction to minors as sexual orientation or identity. It seems that there are already articulations for an open letter to Twitter to be written, hopefully with the signature of academics, against the change in the site’s policy .

What can we learn from what happened?

We can draw three conclusions from what is happening on Twitter and the Internet in general. The first is that there is already an understanding in the academic community that attraction to minors is a sexual orientation, even if it should not find full satisfaction as with other orientations (since protecting children and adolescents is still a concern) and even if such understanding is probably not majoritary. To deny this possibility is to make selective use of scientific research, as do flat-earthers, anti-vax moms and people who believe that masks do not prevent the new coronavirus from spreading or that hydroxychloroquine is a valid drug against covid-19. For all these people, science is only good when it agrees with them. The second is that such a concept insinuates itself to civil society, but society still does not accept it, which cannot be solved with simple science, but with the mobilization of MAPs, as individuals or as associations, permanently.

The third is that the Internet makes this whole process much faster. For good or bad, the Internet allows any speech to gain traction very quickly. With the idea that attraction to minors is not a disease, but an identity, MAPs can organize themselves as a contingent of political and social relevance. Considering only the time between the creation of B4U-ACT and today, 17 years have passed. While the original movement had an increasing visibility between the fifties and seventies, waning in the eighties and obscuring in the nineties, without ceasing to exist (the creator of B4U-ACT himself didn’t like the laws as they are). MAPs reached a moment almost analogous to the peak experienced between the fifties and seventies, although just online, but in less time, thanks to the Internet. This is because the MAP movement is permanent, even under different names and labels. Sooner or later, a permanent cause finds a favorable environment for its growth. They just got to keep going.

Fonte: Google Translate

4 Comentários »

  1. […] when it offers treatment to those who want treatment has the right to exist. Especially because their accomplishments to the cause are […]


    Pingback por B4U-ACT’s “Research Summary”. | Analecto — 20 de dezembro de 2020 @ 10:57

  2. […] a problem in an alternative way. These are times when MAPs(minor-attracted people)are having their voices amplified. And some MAPs have many arguments favorable to the legalization of child pornography. Of course, […]


    Pingback por About Pornhub (and Facebook and Youtube). | Analecto — 17 de dezembro de 2020 @ 15:46

  3. […] está errado sem compreender o que está sendo dito, você se faz de palhaço. É como o pessoal do Twitter, que muda seus termos de serviço sem considerar isto […]


    Pingback por Alguns conselhos de Agostinho, parte 7. | Analecto — 25 de novembro de 2020 @ 09:13

  4. Republicou isso em Our Love Frontier.


    Comentário por eqfoundation — 30 de outubro de 2020 @ 07:27

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