AS celebs and influencers move from Instagram to sell sexy selfies to fans on subscription sites, we ask, should women cash in from posing nude?
And does payment for nude selfies set back feminism?
Says Megan Barton-Hanson, 26, Onlyfans user
Power is firmly in the hands of the content creator – like me
THE 26-year-old former Love Islander and OnlyFans user says:
“OnlyFans is a paid content site which has changed the power dynamic for glamour models and sex workers, with the power now firmly being in the hands of the content creator.
“Those on the site can decide their rates without a third party and choose what “level” they shoot to, be it topless or nude. They can also own all the rights to the images.
“Before, models often felt pressured to shoot to a level they weren’t comfortable with in order to earn more money or secure more work.
“And newer models, who can often be naive to the dangers of the industry, have been a target for exploitation.
“Through lockdown, while many people lost their jobs, OnlyFans content creators have been able to shoot from home and maintain a taxable income which can support themselves and their families.
“If you open Instagram, you see the world’s most followed celebrity models posting revealing and sexy images to the free platform.
We should have freedom of choice
“So why does requesting money for this type of image change it from sexy to slutty?
“Men lust after sex symbols, but as soon as women start wanting to profit from their sexuality, people become confused and annoyed.
“Sometimes I receive pretty aggressive messages from guys asking why these images can’t be available for free.
“It’s as if they feel entitled to the photos, and that content creators asking for money are doing something wrong.
“I receive similar judgement from women too – those who feel it doesn’t uphold feminist values.
“To me, supporting women even if you disagree with what they are doing is feminism – we need to allow women to have freedom of choice.
“There is a strong female community on the site, with women promoting and uplifting each other.
“Some content creators are unable to do other work, maybe they are a carer for someone or simply feel safer working from home.
“If creators willingly engage in this work, who are we to judge?
“The only issue with sex work is when it is not willingly entered into by the worker.
“But when someone is happy and has an income that can allow them to provide for their families and be able to contribute to society by paying their taxes, I can’t see any issue with that.
“And if one day, these creators wish to start creating different content, well, the site is full of makeup routines, fitness workouts and even cooking tutorials.
“I can’t quite imagine these profiles will receive as much judgement.”
Says Dominique Samuels, 22, Conservative commentator
Sites sell a lie that promotes prostitution as female liberation
WRITER, student and conservative commentator Dominique, 22, says:
“The pandemic has led to a surge in model sign-ups to adult subscription sites. This worries me, as these sites do not drive female empowerment.
“They are the opposition to feminism, as they sell a lie that seeks to promote prostitution as liberation, when in fact the sex industry which OnlyFans is a part of is a dangerous, slippery slope.
“When I learned American teen rapper Bhad Bhabie launched her OnlyFans account a week after her 18th birthday, the last thing that sprang to mind was “feminism”.
“I only thought of the legions of creeps that had been clamouring for her debut on the site for years.
“To some, Bhabie earning her first $1m (£727,000) on the site in six hours is an achievement, but to me it feels like a damning statement of how brainwashed young women are.
It’s a dangerous, slippery slope
“Girls begin to think: “Why bother with an education when you can set up an OnlyFans account under the promise of untold riches?”
“This seems to be teaching young women that their most useful tool is their sex appeal and physical appearance.
“The rich and famous on this platform are protected as they have their mansions, their fame and their wealth, unlike the vast majority of young women who work in the sex industry who can end up with nothing.
“The objectification of female bodies feels to be rife among celebrities and within pop culture, like in sexualised music videos.
“But this is not a pretty feminist picture, women are not something to consume.
“It sounds stark but it feels like this is repackaging prostitution, selling the body for money, with no thought for the irreparable consequences for young women, such as eating disorders, depression and low self-esteem.
“The possession of cold, hard cash is something that is idolised above all else.
“Those who argue in favour of sites like OnlyFans conjure up debates about it being a woman’s choice to sell her body.
“At face value this argument has merit. But is it really a choice when so many women turn to sex work as a result of poverty, abuse, mental health issues and addiction?
“And this does not take into account the dark reality that underage girls are able to bypass the site’s rules and make accounts, naively thinking it is a sure route to obtaining the lifestyles celebs and influencers flaunt online.
“This feels like the normalisation of webcamming and prostitution. How can it be that selling a false narrative about the dark underbelly of the sex industry to impressionable young minds is being sold as “feminism”?
“The simple truth is, it is not empowering to women at all.”
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