“I do feel slightly addicted,” says the 23-year-old woman, “especially when you get so many messages and positive attention. In my real life I’m a loner, so it sounds lame but it’s just nice to feel noticed, even though I worry about what that might mean for my self-worth. “
By 8 AM the sun is almost completely up. Throughout London, Saturday night’s festivities appear to have come to an end, with satisfied sighs echoing across Fab Swingers. “What a night xxx,” writes one 37-year-old woman. “Well that was fun,” writes another user in Clapham. Then, with the final layer of darkness evaporating upon the Thames River, a 28-year-old gay guy signals that, on Fab Swingers, Sunday morning’s festivities have only just begun.
Welcome to FabSwingers, a popular site among British swingers and an exploding number of 20- to 30-somethings who are abandoning the likes of Tinder in favor of the easy hookups it seems to provide
It’s 9 PM on a Saturday when a 36-year-old woman writes: “Looking forward to my sexy meet tonight,” pinging the message off to international cupid szczecin thousands of men and couples across London. A few dozen will reply, trying to convince her to meet them instead with either pick-up lines or, occasionally, money or drugs. Most, however, will put exclamation points on their messages in the form of dick pics.
A basic website that seems to have not been updated since 1995, Fab Swingers is available in four countries outside Britain (including Ireland and the US), and despite not having an app has over 200,000 unique users a day, along with 30,000 online at pretty much all times. With user profiles and status updates, it’s essentially Facebook with nudes-plus a little touch of eBay, insomuch as people leave reviews and verifications for other users, only these focus less on reliability or design, and more on stamina, girth, or “smell.”
Each user also has an “interests” section, where they can state what they’re into-be it cuckolding, sex in public, or watersports-and using the site is free, though you pay for features like seeing who views your profile and HD photos.
At 10 PM, a trans woman writes that she and a friend are at E15 Club-a gay sauna in Stratford-“looking for snow.” Her profile pic is blurry, but that’s not out of the ordinary amid Fab Swingers’ universally poor photography.
Of course, most faces are hidden-reserved instead for private messages-though a surprising number do show theirs publicly, sometimes even attached to other people’s genitals. The extreme close-up is the most common type of shot on Fab Swingers, with hairless labia and flabby penises dissecting screens like blunt pocket knives. In fact, the amount of dick pics on a profile is usually inverse to the amount of reviews, meaning that-no matter how pretty you think your cock is-photographing it from ten different angles predictably diminishes your chances of getting laid.
I’ve had a difficult year, struggling with [my] mental health alone, and places like Fab Swingers have served as a good distraction
Unlike most women on Fab Swingers, one 23-year-old tells me that she doesn’t see the problem: “We’re clearly on a site devoted to sex, so dick pics actually help me wade through everyone. I’m a bit of a size queen, so if a hung guy sends me a dick pic and he seems cute, then I take more notice over a guy with [no dick pics].”