AceShowbiz - Bella Thorne's massive success with her OnlyFans tenure isn't good news for everyone. While the actress' $2 million payday in less than a week could lead to more followers and content creators joining the subscription platform, this could turn out problematic for sex workers, who have used the application for years to make a living.
They mostly took issue with the "Midnight Sun" star's comments that she only joined OnlyFans as research for a role in an upcoming film directed by Sean Baker. Savannah Solo, a sex worker, tweeted, "And let me also say this, I'm all about celebs starting an Onlyfans, but what I'm not about is them treating it like some fun science experiment, with the audacity to claim they're just trying to get the full experience."
Another sex worker, Ellamourne, is worried that the perspective Bella gains from her experience doesn't represent other content creators' with less fanbase. "The perspective she'll gain won't be representative of what most people experience as content creators on the platform," Ellamourne noted. "I am certain she'll deal with some of the same issues - fans crossing boundaries, scammers, etc. But at the end of the day she is a celebrity and wields a large amount of privilege. Unless the intent is to drive the conversation toward decriminalization of sex work, I'll be disappointed."
Echoing the sentiment, sex worker Allie Eve Knox shared her concern that Bella's huge success on the platform will falsely lead people to believe that it's easy to make money on the platform, while it's not. "People think this is easy quick money, blah blah blah. But it ain't," she claimed, adding, "It is full time communication, full time original content creation, full time being 'on.' "
"These celebrity users never have to face the stigma that we do," sex worker, writer and co-host of the "Peepshow" Podcast Jessie Sage said of dealing with the societal backlash for joining the platform. "They can just profit off of platforms we have built, without enduring any of the backlash that we have to endure."
Another believes the perception that posting nudes on OnlyFans is a good way to make a quick buck could feed into cultural misogyny and sex work stigma. "When people with huge platforms that happen to be [anti-sex work] or huge misogynists start bringing up OnlyFans in regular conversation, it's an excuse for the rest of society to dog-pile on us [more than] they already did," said adult performer Jane Wilde.
Aussie Rachel added, "To witness a celebrity gentrifying a platform and making obscene amounts of money without acknowledging the plight of sex workers is truly a slap in the face."
There's also a growing concern that the mainstreaming of OnlyFans could result in sex workers taking a financial hit due to oversaturated market, while there's an allegation that the platform may edge out sex workers as allegedly reflected by its marketing. "Onlyfans NEVER advertises that they host sex workers. It's all 'fitness trainers' and 'aspiring chefs' and 'models,' " content creator Savannah argued. "They take 20% of every penny we earn and they can't even bear to acknowledge we exist."
Bella has not responded to the criticism.