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Welcome to JackinWorld. You're probably here because of one of three reasons: (1) You stumbled upon the site and have no idea whether your son or daughter has visited it; (2) you learned that your child has visited JackinWorld and you wanted to check it out to see if it's okay; or (3) you heard about it through another parent who's outraged, you came here ready to be outraged, and after visiting, sure enough, you're outraged. Well, if you fall into category #3, there's not much we can say, except that JackinWorld probably isn't right for you or your family. If #2 is you, we're happy you want to make an informed decision about whether or not your kid should be reading JackinWorld, and we encourage you to spend some time to decide whether JackinWorld (or perhaps just some of it) is right for your family. If you fall into the first category, feel free to explore the site, and then consider whether or not it might be valuable reading for your teenager.

First, though, a little background on JackinWorld and our policies. JackinWorld was originally inspired by the forced resignation of U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders in 1993, after she advocated that boys and girls in sex-education classes be told that masturbation is a safe, effective alternative to intercourse for those who aren't yet ready for adult sexual activity. After she resigned, JackinWorld founder M.J. Ecker realized there are few resources adolescents can turn to for accurate, frank, and comforting information about masturbation — a practice almost all teen males discover, either on their own or through others, often getting terrible misinformation in the process. He also realized many adults are confused about masturbation and aren't aware how widespread (even universal) the practice is. Seeing the Internet as the perfect medium to do what Dr. Elders advocated, he drew up a simple, one-page primer that explained the basic concepts and reassured the reader that masturbation is not harmful to one's health.

Almost overnight, the site developed a loyal following that has grown steadily. Teens started asking questions — hundreds of them — and asked that the site be continually updated and expanded. It was, and such features as the Question of the Week, JackinQ&A, and JackinExpert were born. Soon JackinWorld had gathered a huge number of readers, who by now spanned in age from 11 to 90. But even from the beginning, we decided no material on JackinWorld would be "adult" or "pornographic" in any way. As it stands, all material on the site is compatible with a television rating of about TV-14.

A note about parental controls: Large portions of JackinWorld may be unavailable for viewing on computers with parental controls in place. Of course, we can't know if these pages were the kind of thing you had in mind when you set up your parental controls for your teenager. If so, let them do their thing. If not, and you would like all of JackinWorld to be accessible by your teenager, consider updating or otherwise altering your parental-control settings. We understand that Internet guardian features don't always work exactly as parents intend, but it's the only thing we can suggest.

We have been adamant in our decision to keep JackinWorld fun, educational, informative, and safe, and to reject any material whose only value is titillation — against the wishes of many of the readers, we might add. We hope you enjoy JackinWorld, and we hope you'll join us in bringing this very taboo topic — which tragically has been the source of so much guilt, shame, and confusion for literally hundreds of years — out into the open. Thank you for visiting.

—The JackinWorld Editors

For some good information about how to instill healthy masturbation attitudes in your children, see A JackinWorld Guide for Parents in the JackinWorld Library.
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