OnlyFans suspends its controversial policy limiting sexual content amid backlash
OnlyFans — the popular social site known for its risque content — seemingly won few new fans amid its controversial decision to limit sexually explicit content, and has suspended its policy change amid ongoing backlash.
In a statement released Wednesday, the platform announced it "secured assurances necessary to support our diverse creator community and have suspended the planned Oct. 1 policy change," with reference to a planned amendment to its guidelines that would've blocked users from posting explicit content at the request of its "banking partners and payout providers," but would continue to allow nudity within a new set of platform rules. Prior to the shift, creators charged subscription fees to roughly 130 million total active customers across the site, who'd then gain access to private content — which often included pornographic photos and video.
During the coronavirus pandemic, OnlyFans became a steady source of income for many, including celebrities (including Bella Thorne, Cardi B, Tyga, and RuPaul's Drag Race star Dahlia Sin), social media personalities, adult film performers, and other sex workers, all of whom collectively earned more than $4.5 billion since the site launched in 2016, per a New York Times report.
Though many didn't use the platform for outright pornographic content, the internet pushed back against OnlyFans' initial announcement. In particular, sex workers among the LGBTQIA+ community spoke out against the move.
"A lot of us have found safety in not having to see customers in person, one, because of Covid-19, and two, because of the violence against trans people and how it's been increasingly just getting worse and worse over the years," said Stacey Monroe, a 27-year-old trans woman and avid OnlyFans creator, in a recent interview with NBC News. "It's horrible. So, we are going to be facing more safety issues, more issues with housing, medical, trying to just survive in general."
Another OnlyFans user, Jasmine Rice, tweeted a condemnation of OnlyFans' prior stance on explicit content.
"They've also made billions off of the backs of sex workers," she tweeted. "As someone who does sex work on OF, I'm angry for every creator that has relied on OF for an income just to be thrown out."
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