The Business of Discrimination

OnlyFans - Against Sex Workers

Only Fans, it is a meme in itself. In such a short space of time, it has gone from nothing to everything in the world of a pandemic-hit sex worker. Unfortunately, like many platforms, this oftentimes shady one has started to ‘drain the swamp’ of undesirables like Me. It is likely only a matter of time before they purge their image entirely of those who are seen as ‘obscene’ in the sex industry.

'Let's not forget who made them iconic'

sex workers. built onlyfans
‘Sex workers built OnlyFans’ image provided by the wonderful Olivia Monet.

One scroll of the OnlyFans Twitter feed or blog page and you can see the image management being played out. The brand is favoring the promotion of its fashion and fitness models like Sierra Skye, up-and-coming singer-songwriters as well as established recording artists like Yung Bleu. Of course, they are entitled to do so, but please, let’s not forget who made them iconic, and here’s a hint, it wasn’t Beyonce.

As app platforms continue to refuse apps to companies marked as ‘adult’, and creator of the platform Guy Stokely was quoted by the Economist as being ‘a veteran of the adult entertainment world’. In late 2018 Guy Stokely gave up significant company control and the MyFreeCams adult content platform founder Leonid Radvinsky took 75% company ownership. If the company’s roots are so entangled in sex work, with both Stokely and Radvinsky at the helm, why are so many adult stars being pushed away?

'If sex workers built OnlyFans, they can tear it down'

Perhaps this comes down to the company’s quick rise to fame in 2019. The influx of more sex workers came with so many unknowns, how could a platform ever consider that fringe, but entirely valid kinks like scat play and ABDL would be hitting their feeds? Who knows what they could have anticipated, but, it’s there now. Instead of accepting, supporting and helping their creators grow, they are locking down and shutting the gates without warning.

The reasons behind recent account shut downs have been named as breaches of the Terms Of Use. Such a breach could be attributed whole host of innocent mistakes or blatant rule breaks. For example, tweeting a link with an explicit photo while your twitter isn’t marked as ‘sensitive content’ goes against the OnlyFans Terms of Use as does posting something that is considered and reported as ‘Obscene’ by a user.

The main concern, as I hear it, is the sites lack of transparency, and muddy interpretations of the terms of use. Of course terms of use keep us all safe, however uncertainly on the interpretations is causing anxiety and worry during an already pandemic-panicked time. Communication and clarity would have been easy in preventing sex workers from being left out in the cold, yet the site has failed us all.  Let’s not forget, adult platforms Clips4Sale have compiled comprehensive of content restrictions and are consistent in their support of bettering their high earners, and owning their pride in supporting online adult entertainers.

Rolling Stone had it right when they published this article: Sex Workers Built OnlyFans. Now They Say They’re Getting Kicked Off

For a company making millions off the back of sex workers and yet providing such uncertainty, I suggest the working women of sex industry vote with their beautiful feet and walk away with their heads held high. If sex workers built OnlyFans, they can tear it down. This will not be easy,  will take a group of powerful influential women to do, so its a good job I know a fair few of them! However as strong, capable and resilient as sex workers are they cannot do this alone.

The generosity of you, the subscriber and tipper who has supported them is also being taken for granted. 20% of what you spend is being siphoned off to fund a platform that will be unlikely to hold your favorite creator in the months and years to come.

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