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A discussion of authority-based (Master/slave, Dominant/submissive) relationships, from 24/7 connections to those lasting only as long as a scene.

How do you look for a D/s or M/s dynamic? How is one founded and nurtured? What are the principles and agreements that make structured relationships work?

What advantages do they confer? What skills do they call on the participants to develop? Are they really so different from egalitarian relationships?

Featuring our guests:

MASTER MORRIS, SLAVE JONATHAN and SLAVE LARRY have been in a leather family for over three years. Master Morris is the head of the household; slave jonathan is his live-in 24/7 slave, while slave larry lives in his own quarters, but is also a full-time slave. Master Morris and slave jonathan hold the current 2013 International Master and slave titles, and slave larry was an integral part of their service to the community.

CLÉO DUBOIS believes consensual powerplay is a valid path to self-discovery, intimacy, and ecstatic sexuality. Out in SM since the early 80s, and inspired by such fellow-travelers as Cynthia Slater, Joseph Bean, Mark Thompson and her life partner, Fakir, in 1995 she founded the Academy of S/M Artsand since 2002 has offered Erotic Dominance Intensive weekends for women, men, and those who switch.  Cléo's award-winning docufilm, The Pain Game (2000) is now considered a classic, and her writing has been published in numerous celebrated non-fiction lifestyle books. In 2008, Cléo was elected a Leather Marshal of the San Francisco Pride Celebration & Parade and received the Living Leather Heritage award from the Southwest Leather Conference. She blogs weekly on, offers office or Skype consultations and guided play for couples of all genders and sexual orientations in the privacy of her dungeon.

JUSTIN TANIS is an artist, writer, photographer, scholar, and activist. He earned his M.Div. degree at Harvard Divinity School and his Doctor of Ministry degree from San Francisco Theological Seminary. He contributed chapters to The Queer Bible Commentary and Take Back the Word: A Queer Reading of the Bible, and his published dissertation was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in 2003. Justin’s long record of advocacy includes ACT-UP, Queer Nation, and a stint as education and outreach manager for the National Center for Transgender Equality. He has presented at numerous leather events including Leather Leadership Conference, Southplains Leatherfest, the Master/slave Conference, Los Angeles Leather Weekend and Rio Grande Leather. He was the recipient of the 2008 Pantheon of Leather Rocky Mountain Regional Award, the Spirit of Service award from Southwest Leather Conference in 2011, and the 2011 “Master Jack McGeorge Excellence in Education Award.” Justin serves as managing director of the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry in Berkeley and is currently working on a second  doctoral degree.

DADDY ROBERT, ERIK WILL and DEREKK COOK consider they are in a cascading power dynamic. Robert and Erik met in 2011 at a shoot and decided to call each other “Daddy” and “boy” on their first date, which was also Erik’s first flogging; Erik was collared a few months later. Erik and Derekk met at the 2012 Bay Area Leather Alliance weekend, and after a series of one-month contracts, Derekk was collared. Pay attention now: Derekk is Robert’s boy. Erik is Derekk’s Daddy. Robert is Erik’s Daddy and Sir and is Derek’s Daddybear. (Robert is also in an 11-year non-power-dynamic relationship with his life partner Bruce, who has a boyfriend of 1 year.) Erik serves as chairman of the S.F. Leathermen’s Discussion Group, Daddy Robert serves on our SFLDG board, and Derekk is one of our most valued (and put-upon) volunteers.