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OnlyFans to ban “sexually explicit” content from October 1

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OnlyFans has become a popular website for amateurs creating adult content to earn money, but a statement issued by the company that now boasts over 2 million content creators and 130 million users says they will be banning “sexually explicit” content starting October 1.

Products and services often don’t end up becoming popular for their original intended uses. Coca Cola was meant to be a cure for morphine addiction and became a soft drink; Facebook was created to judge girls’ looks at Harvard and became a social network, Tinder was a hookup app that became a dating app. And OnlyFans was created in 2016 to be a place for artists, musicians, fitness gurus and other creators to earn money by sharing their content with fans for a subscription.

OnlyFans is based in the United Kingdom and shot to popularity during the Covid-19 pandemic, in large part because it because a source of income for people who couldn’t go out and work due to Coronavirus lockdowns. And while that may have started out as musicians who couldn’t gig and fitness instructors who couldn’t host classes at gyms, OnlyFans quickly became the go-to site for bar girls, strippers and other sex workers who couldn’t meet customers or whose businesses were closed for lockdowns to sell adult content.

In Thailand the site has become wildly popular with bar girls and freelancers who would pick up customers at the infamous clubs and bars in Thailand’s party hotspots, all of which have now been closed on and off for over a year throughout the country.

But the new policy banning sexually explicit material may put a stop to their online earning that replaced their wages and income from bars or freelance customers. The policy says they will still allow nudity but only within the Acceptable Use Policy of OnlyFans, though there was no clear definition of what crosses the line. Many creators only post nudes or sexy pictures, but plenty are creating and sharing and selling hardcore pornography, which will no longer be allowed.

Content creators took to social media to respond to OnlyFans unrelated posts since the announcement asking for verification and clarification. Some users posted screenshots of a form response OnlyFans has used in responding to many creators claiming that they will not be banning adult content and asking users to wait for a public statement.

The move against hardcore content is in response to investor hesitancy and bankers who don’t want to be associated with pornography. OnlyFans is attempting to move towards a more broad audience and away from adult content with the launch of OnlyFans TV, a free streaming service and app that doesn’t allow any NSFW content.

The shift comes months after adult content giant Pornhub tighten a lot of policies after Visa, MasterCard, and Discover banned the site following reports of illegal content like child porn and videos posted without consent slipping through the cracks onto the site.

Tumblr, previously the go-to safe haven for online sex workers tried the same restriction of adult content in late 2018 and saw their web traffic fall over 30%. The blog site had been purchased by Yahoo for USD $1.1 billion but was sold to the operators of WordPress less than a year after the adult content ban for a figure reported to be less than USD $3 million.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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