An image board is a variety of Internet forum based around the posting of images. Many image boards encourage a culture of anonymity rather than the use of usernames and avatars to identify their members. A number of image boards exist for people in the "furry" culture. The term "furry" was first used in 1980 and originally became popularized at science fiction conventions in the early 1980s, before the advent of the internet. A furry is someone who enjoys dressing up as, or looking at images of, anthropomorphic animals. These depictions of animals often have a sexualized element. Furry image boards exist for users to share drawings, cartoons, flash animations, photographs and other images relating to furry culture.
U-18chan is a furry image board hosted in the United Kingdom but taking its name from a variety of German submarine. The site contains a number of sub-forums for furries and furry artwork, including specialized boards for Pokemon, Flash animation and My Little Pony. The My Little Pony board is mainly centered around the cartoon series "My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic" and contains fan art, fan fiction and discussion of the show. There are also off-topic folders for those who wish to discuss music, photography or the computer game "Minecraft."
Pawsru is an English-language image board with a mostly Russian audience. It has sub-forums for general discussion, furry comics, flash animation and Pokemon, among others. The board has a specific sub-forum for furries with an interest in animals' paws. This sub-forum contains a variety of drawings, screen grabs and photographs of the feet of anthropomorphized animals. An off-topic forum dedicated to music allows users to embed audio files into their posts and discuss music acts such as Deadmau5.
Lulz.net is the modern version of a board formerly known as WTFur. The board was originally opened in 2006. Lulz.net's motto is "You messed with me!" and features an animal's skull for its logo. Its main sub-forum, known as "furi," contains discussion of the furry culture, images from cartoons and advice on other websites that deal in furry imagery.The site also has boards for users who wish to share Flash animation or to design furry banners. Lulz.net also offers its own Internet relay chat room.
Fchan is an English-language furry image board founded in 2004. It is one of the oldest furry image boards around. The site contains 11 separate sub-image boards, including boards for users who wish to have their furry art critiqued, users who draw cartoon art and users who design banners. A board called "Clean" contains images that are safe for work-place viewing and is home to photographs of furry costumes and screen grabs of vintage cartoons. Fchan also hosts an IRC chat room. Spam, commercially available images and off-topic content are all banned from Fchan.