Melbourne has long had a thriving subculture of BDSM enthusiasts. This subculture is often referred to as a “community of like minded people” and has been expressed in a number of ways both privately and publically. Clubs, social gatherings, workshops and festivals run year long with new events constantly being promoted. A regular theme through it all is the need to pass on knowledge and to educate BDSM practitioners on the many aspects of “What It Is That We Do” and how to do it safely. KNOTbound has long held a place in the educational aspect of the Melbourne BDSM scene.
The very first incarnation started on 18th February 2000 with the first meeting of what came to be known as KNOT. KNOT was held in Melbourne to try to create a quality program for matching mentors and mentees within the BDSM community. KNOT stood for KNowledge, Openness and Teaching. While this programme didn’t quite get off the ground, KNOT as an educational concept never disappeared.
The next incarnation was KNOTbound, which started in 2005. KNOTbound was a facilitated discussion group for the exploration of advanced BDSM lifestyle topics. Meeting once a month, the participants engaged in lively debate over a range of difficult topics. The invitation list was closed and participation was limited to those with several years real time experience in BDSM. One or two places were held open for newcomers to listen and learn.
After a couple of years KNOTbound was put on hold for personal reasons and although there were attempts to revive it over the years, the advent of Fetlife with its many discussion forums reduced the interest for a real time discussion group. KNOTbound went underground and mutated yet again to emerge in 2010 as a private lifestyle training program. The acronym changed slightly to stand for KNowledge, Opportunity and Training.
KNOTbound Ltd incorporated as a company limited by guarantee on 17 May 2017 and successfully received registration as a charity with the ACNC. This allows KNOTbound Ltd to engage on a larger scale and opens new opportunities in our service to our communities.
Expanding the educational focus, creating the Australian BDSM Archives in an attempt to capture and preserve our history, recognising the needs of isolated Australians in rural areas and seeking to reach out and connect our community to larger service organisations, KNOTbound has grown into a true service organisation for the BDSM subculture and it’s supporters in new, innovative and unique ways.