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The term BDSM apparently originated in the late 1980s following discussions on various adult bulletin board systems and other online venues aimed at creating a single over-arching term to encompass all participants in leather, fetish, SM, and similar activities. While the search continues, as of yet, no one has found the definitive first use of the term. It clearly predates 1991 and probably predates 1989. Various reports suggest its first use on the Compuserve Human Sexuality area moderated by BDSM author Gloria Brame or even earlier on the fetish/SM area that flourished as part SOBnet (Sexually Oriented Bulletin Board network) in the mid-1980s. BDSM's component parts (B&D, D/S or D&S, and SM or S/M or S&M) were all in common use in adult classified ads in the United States by the end of the 1970s.
This article is published under the terms of the GFDL. The contributors to this article were: Steve_Vakesh, Tanos
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