Sex workers believe OnlyFans will close down without explicit sexual videos

·3-min read
Someone using a computer (Adam Peck/PA) (PA Archive)
Someone using a computer (Adam Peck/PA) (PA Archive)

Sex workers believe OnlyFans could close down as a result of strict new rules banning explicit sexual content.

From October 1, the online subscription service will no longer allow “any content containing sexually-explicit conduct”, except nudes.

Users of the platform have revealed they intend to look elsewhere following the announcement, though many are anxious about what the future holds.

“It will have to be starting up from the bottom and working our way up again,” said a 23-year-old known online as Arabella Amyiah, who currently generates between £7,000 and £8,000 a month from a legion of around 1,000 subscribers.

The social media platform is predominately used by sex workers but a number of celebrities, musicians and comedians also use it for non-sexual content.

Creators receive 80% commission on their earnings, while the remaining 20% goes to the London-based firm, covering “referral payments, payment processing, hosting, support, and all other services”.

The company said the changes are being introduced due to pressure from financial partners.

Although sex workers plan to use other platforms, they are concerned alternatives could also face the same fate.

I’m just going to have to go to another platform but then, are other platforms safe as well?

Yasmina Khan, OnlyFans content creator

A 24-year-old, who uses the name Yasmina Khan, currently makes about £22,000 per month via OnlyFans.

She hopes her 2,000-plus subscribers will follow and jump ship to a new site.

“I’m just going to have to go to another platform but then, are other platforms safe as well?,” she told PA.

“I’m a little bit anxious about it but I think everyone is very anxious right now.”

It’s difficult to see that OnlyFans will survive purely as an influencer site

Myles Jackman, obscenity lawyer

Obscenity lawyer Myles Jackman said he believes OnlyFans could decline like Tumblr which saw numbers drop after it decided to ban pornographic images in December 2018.

“It’s difficult to see that OnlyFans will survive purely as an influencer site,” he explained to PA.

“It’s possible but considering the entire content base has been pornography and now it’s not going to be anymore.”

OnlyFans, which has some 130 million users, is expected to share more details about the move in the coming days.

The changes come in the wake of a BBC investigation, which claimed that content moderators for the platform are told to give multiple warnings to accounts that post illegal content before the site decides to close them, and that staff are asked to be more lenient towards successful accounts on the service.

The investigation also claims to have seen a number of examples of banned content on the site and says it was told by moderators that prostitution services have been found advertising on the platform.

In response, OnlyFans said it “remains committed to the highest levels of safety and content moderation of any social platform”.

It added: “All creators are verified prior to being able to upload any content to OnlyFans, and all uploaded content is checked by automated systems and human moderators.”

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