This page has been tackled more than once. It's been a couple years since the last time I did this, and I feel it is appropriate to tackle this again.
For those looking for all the history behind PrettyThin, we throw nothing away. Here are a few links that might help:
The History of PrettyThin - from the beginning, including content created before PT came under "new management"
Behind the Curtain - the person behind PT
I also recommend that you look at some of the old homepages. There is a lot of history to this eating disorder community and the many homepages do tell a story.
Now, to the business at hand...
PrettyThin is the worlds largest and most active eating disorder community. Now, what does that mean to be an eating disorder community?
Sure, PrettyThin has the tools - blog, forum, image gallery, memberships, commenting.....that makes it a community, but it doesn't differentiate it from any other community. What makes PrettyThin unique is that it is an eating disorder community.
An eating disorder is not a seasonal diet. And eating disorder is not a fad, and it is not something you catch. An eating disorder comes in many shapes, many sizes, and many forms. And people of all ages and genders experience this unhealthy relationship with food, eating, and their bodies.
There are many sites and communities out there that discuss eating disorders. These sites range from the traditional pro-ana site to national (and international) eating disorder associations. And there are a lot of shades from one extreme to the other, from the glorification of disordered eating to hardcore recovery and awareness.
There never was, or at least none survive, a site and community that welcomes everyone and anyone with an eating disorder. PrettyThin has been called the "live and let live among eating disorder websites." It has also been referred to as the community that gives eating disorders a voice. And if you read the testimonials, you will see that it mean a lot of different things to different people. But they have one thing in common. They all have an eating disorder.
What PrettyThin has done - by being for people with eating disorders and by people with eating disorders - is create greater discussions around eating disorders. It has lowered the barrier to accessing others who understand what it means to have an ED. People who have experienced it, who have stories of their own, and have something to offer the greater discussion around this tremendous issue. Those experiences and stories are not wrong. They are a greater scope and awareness of the many perspectives of eating disorders.
What PrettyThin will always be is a place that welcomes ANYONE with an eating disorder or a relationship to those with an ED. PrettyThin does not tell you who to be, how to be, what to say, what to do. You have choices; you have to make those choices. What PrettyThin offers is awareness - that there are many sides to eating disorders and your relationship to them. What you do with that is up to you.
I like to think of PrettyThin as a modern day pro-ana site taking an entirely different approach toward communication around eating disorders. It is not pro-anorexic. If you are still having that discussion then you're having a battle around a question that was answered long ago. That's not the discussion of today.
PrettyThin is the pro-ana site of today because it is the worlds largest pro-anorectic website. The largest website and forum in support of those individuals with eating disorders.
So if it's not a traditional pro-ana site, then what's up with thinspiration? Take a look to better understand what thinspo is all about and why you find it on PrettyThin.