Everyone knows OnlyFans is a platform for content creators of a sexual nature, but the pandemic has drastically changed that. The site is excellent for sex workers to grow their platform and make some money, especially since strip clubs and other adult entertainment centers are now closed due to Covid-19. Many sex workers rely on their OnlyFans income to make it through the pandemic. Now, popular influencers who already have a massive presence on Instagram and TikTok have moved to OnlyFans. Unfortunately, this takes viewers away from the people who need the money they get from the platform the most. Here’s a breakdown of some of the most popular OnlyFans creators and the problems they pose to sex workers.
Who’s Earning What on OnlyFans
According to Influencer Marketing Hub, the average OnlyFans creator only makes $180 monthly from the site. This isn’t enough to carry anyone through the pandemic. To be successful on OnlyFans, you have to find a niche to stand out, constantly post so that your followers see you’re active on the platform, and interact with your fanbase to keep them enticed. Users who pay for content want constant stimulation. They want to see that you’re responsive and are posting consistently. Successful OnlyFans users treat it as a full-time job. The platform gained popularity quickly because it seems so accessible. As long as you have internet access and know how to take good photos, you could earn money on your own time. Unfortunately, though, it’s not quite that simple. The top 1 percent of creators make 33% of all the money on the platform, so it’s more likely that celebrities like Cardi B and Bella Thorne will get a much larger piece of the pie than your average sex worker. Plus, OnlyFans takes 20 percent of the income one earns on the platform, forcing people to raise their subscription price and alienate some subscribers in turn.
From Sex Work to Influencer
OnlyFans changed drastically when the pandemic shut everyone indoors. Suddenly people who relied on showing off the fun side of their lives on TikTok and Instagram were out of ideas to post. This forced many to turn to OnlyFans to keep their followers engaged. The platform was previously known as a site for adult content, which worked for many people, especially during the pandemic.
Now, more general content is being made because of the increase of influencers. You can now find exercise videos, cooking videos, fashion bloggers, and cosplay stars using OnlyFans. This isn’t necessarily bad, but it makes the OnlyFans audience much broader than before, which prevents sex workers from gaining the same amount of attention that they got before influencers used the site. It could make some people feel like they have to create content outside of their comfort zone to gain more followers and keep the attention on them.
Will OnlyFans Change Their Policy?
Now that so many different kinds of users are on the platform, there’s a chance that OnlyFans will try and change their policies and the way the platform works to keep up with the sudden popularity. Between March and April of 2020, the site gained 75% more users and creators. This makes some creators nervous, as they’ve seen other platforms like Patreon change their policies and force those who make adult content to go elsewhere. For celebrities who use OnlyFans, any changes made aren’t that big of a deal because they can always rely on paid sponsorships to make more money, but that doesn’t apply to sex workers. Many strippers are out of work due to the pandemic, and a change of policy to OnlyFans could destroy their income. There’s a considerable amount of potential to grow your fanbase on OnlyFans. Still, it becomes problematic when the people who initially used it to sell NSFW content are being pushed aside.
Adult content creators are what made OnlyFans what it is today. They created an immense amount of traffic and popularity for the site. They are what allowed it to grow. Yet, they may get pushed out of the platform entirely now that celebrities and influencers are starting to run the show. This is what happened with Tumblr and Patreon. Is OnlyFans next? This could tangibly mess with people’s business and leave many sex workers entirely without work. Sex workers, strippers, dancers, escorts, and sugar babies are all completely ineligible for stimulus checks and government assistance. They can’t make a living without their online presence. If OnlyFans continues to change and chooses to push them out, this will affect thousands and leave many creators in the dust.