OnlyFans is one of the fastest growing social media platforms right now.
The subscription-based service has been around since 2016, but has expanded to currently include about 200,000 new sign-ups every 24 hours. In fact, as of 2022, the platform has over 150 million active users and over 1 million content creators. But this growth hasn’t been without controversy – mainly around the large amount of pornographic content on the platform.
Here's everything you need to know about OnlyFans.
What is OnlyFans?
OnlyFans is a subscription-based social media platform. Users pay a subscription fee to follow content creators, who in turn take home a large cut of that fee.
Content is varied, with everyone from celebrities and influencers to musicians, chefs and fitness coaches using it. It’s also been very popular among sex workers and adult entertainers. In August 2021 OnlyFans published a statement saying it would be banning all sexually explicit content as of October 2021. However, they retracted this after receiving backlash from many creators.
Why is it so popular?
Exclusive content for subscribers is part of the OnlyFans package – and a lot of people are willing to pay for it.
For creators, the opportunity to earn money is obviously the big draw. While it’s possible for brands and content creators to earn money on other social media platforms, usually any revenue originates from advertising and product placement. In the case of OnlyFans, though, the money comes from the users themselves, with OnlyFans itself taking a 20 per cent cut of any earnings.
In 2020 a model named Kaylen Ward raised more than $1 million in charity donations following the Australian wildfires by charging fans $10 to see explicit photos.There have even been reports of some adult entertainers making six-figure sums each year.
Many YouTubers see it as a second source of revenue, and musicians are able to link their Spotify accounts to their page, offering them potential exposure alongside revenue that music streaming services don’t provide on their own.
What do parents need to be aware of?
Sex work and pornography has been the most popular form of content on the site, with many creators finding it a safer and more lucrative environment to work in.
OnlyFans does provide Acceptable Use guidelines and User Content guidelines, but the content posted is monetised by the creators themselves, meaning they are able to post pretty much anything as long as it’s legal.
To share their own content, users must be 18 or over and are required to provide a selfie alongside photo ID and a registered address. However, concerns have been raised over how effective the age verification process is, with reports of younger teenagers using borrowed IDs to create accounts.
Children may feel tempted by the apparent freedom that comes with an OnlyFans account, but the minimum age bracket is there for a reason. It isn't a suitable environment for young people.
Reporting and blocking
Because OnlyFans is only for people over the age of 18, there are no parental controls.
OnlyFans is not responsible for reporting content that violates their terms of service; instead it falls to individual users. You can either restrict or block an account.
If you restrict someone, that user will not be able to comment on your content or message you. However, you can still see their account. If you block someone, they will no longer be able to interact with your account at all, and vice versa.
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This article was last updated on 23/09/22.