WriterShelf is intended as a diverse and open platform. That means, we allow content inappropriate for younger readers. We call this Adult Content. Here's how we handle it.
Choose Whether You See Adult Content At All
As a reader, you don't have to see Adult Content if you don't want. There's a quick control right in the WriterShelf toolbar under the Settings icon.
You can also opt out (or in) of Adult Content in Account Settings. Change the setting anytime and as many times as you like. WriterShelf updates immediately.
When Adult Content is set to hidden, you won't see any articles marked as Adult Content - except those you publish yourself, and then only on your Pen Name Page.
Adult Content is for Adults
By default, Adult Content appears in article lists but when you click into an article you only see a summary of the contents. To view the full article, you must first confirm you have have reached the Age of Majority where you live. You only have to do this once.
For Writers: A Self-Rating System
When you publish an article, as part of the final Preview & Publish step, you have the option to mark it as Adult Content.
Readers must confirm that they have reached the age of majority to read articles you set as Adult Content.
What Do We Mean by Adult Content?
Sex and drugs and rock and roll. Well, not the rock and roll. If your content is 3 on a scale of 5 for any of these categories, it should be marked as Adult.
Here's are the thresholds we have in mind.
Sex acts occur and are described with some detail. Or more.
Intense or persistent violence or description of violent acts.
Profanity used throughout the work. You drop f-bombs easily.
Drugs and Alcohol
Graphic descriptions of drug/alcohol are a major theme - or figure more than casually.
- Sex aids and sexual wellness medications - Discussions around sex pills, toys or other sex-related products.
- Sexual encounter, escort and hookup advice
What's not allowed?
NO PORN. Period. Not in your pen names either. Here's our definition:
Pornographic content primarily includes photos, videos, or GIFs that show real-life human genitals, and any content—including photos, videos, GIFs and illustrations—that depicts sex acts.
But what about art?
Nudity related to political or newsworthy speech, and nudity found in art, such as sculptures and illustrations, are permitted.
So Obviously, Erotica is OK
Steamy has a home on WriterShelf, just so long as it's identified as Adult Content.
Wikipedia has a good definition.
Erotic literature comprises fictional and factual stories and accounts of human sexual relationships which have the power to or are intended to arouse the reader sexually. Such erotica takes the form of novels, short stories, poetry, true-life memoirs, and sex manuals. A common feature of the genre is sexual fantasies on such themes as prostitution, orgies, homosexuality, sadomasochism, and many other taboo subjects and fetishes, which may or may not be expressed in explicit language. Other common elements are satire and social criticism.
What happens when you break the rules?
We'll block your article and likely ban you. We decide.
What if you see something that you think should be marked Adult Content but isn't?
Use the Flag system. This lets you alert us that there's something on WriterShelf that you don't think is right. We'll look and see what's going on.
Getting Started with Adult Content
If you want to get started publishing Adult Content on WriterShelf, we suggest you create a Pen Name dedicated to the genre you want to explore. More than one if you want to write in different genres. Mixing Adult Content with other types of writing risks confusing readers. It's probably not a good idea.
Creating dedicated Pen Names lets readers discover you as an author and understand the kind of writing they can expect.
WriterShelf is a privacy-oriented platform that lets you write using pen names.
Everyone has a story to tell. WriterShelf gives you the freedom to be yourself.