Why Sex Workers Are Saying Bella Thorne “Ruined” OnlyFans
Content creators are claiming that Thorne is responsible for endangering their livelihoods after the subscription site altered its policy to cap earnings after a massive sale by the actor stirred controversy.
Sex workers are blaming Bella Thorne for a recent policy change that caps their earnings on independent content creator site OnlyFans. The actor reportedly amassed millions of dollars just days after joining the site and then received a mass influx of refund requests for a photo that users claim she falsely advertised.
The company has since denied the policy change was because of one user.
On Saturday, the 22-year-old former Disney Channel star-turned-musician and director, issued an apology to those who she “hurt” after joining the site. In a series of tweets, Thorne said she was meeting with the company “about the news restrictions” and said her intention with joining was “to help with the stigma behind sex.”
PT1 Remove the stigma behind sex, sex work, and the negativity that surrounds the word SEX itself by bringing a mainstream face to it that’s what I was trying to do, to help bring more faces to the site to create more revenue for content creators on the site.— BITCHIMBELLATHORNE (@bellathorne) August 29, 2020
I wanted to bring attention to the site, the more people on the site the more likely of a chance to normalize the stigmas, And in trying to do this I hurt you. I have risked my career a few times to remove the stigma behind sex work, porn, and the natural hatred people spew...— BITCHIMBELLATHORNE (@bellathorne) August 29, 2020
...I am a mainstream face and when you have a voice, a platform, you try to use you in helping others and advocate for something bigger than yourself. Again in this process I hurt you and for that I’m truly sorry.— BITCHIMBELLATHORNE (@bellathorne) August 29, 2020
Ps. I’m meeting with only fans about the new restrictions to find out why!!! This is fucked up and I’m sorry comment any ideas or concerns you want brought up to OF!! and send me your links and a pic so I can promote you guys— BITCHIMBELLATHORNE (@bellathorne) August 29, 2020
Thorne announced on August 19 that she was joining OnlyFans, but said she wouldn’t be “doing nudity” on her account. In less than a week, the actor made more than $2 million, the Los Angeles Times reported. Thorne claimed she would put earnings toward charity and her production company. She also said she was using the experience as part of research for a documentary with filmmaker Sean Baker.
In a statement on August 28, Baker denied claims that he was working on a film about Onlyfans or “using Bella Thorne as research,” though he added that they did have a conversation with Thorne about a possible collaboration.
“I would like to make it clear that the news of me making a film (documentary or fiction narrative) about OnlyFans and using Bella Thorne as research is false. I’m NOT attached to this project,” Baker wrote. “On that call, I advised her team to consult with sex workers and address the way she went about this as to NOT hurt the sex work industry. This has been the extent of my involvement.”
Creators are now accusing Thorne of “ruining” the app for sex workers who rely on OnlyFans as their main source of income after she “scammed” subscribers.
The platform is used by creators who earn money by providing content directly to subscribers who pay monthly fees, tips, and pay-per-view (PPV) fees. While the app is mostly popular among sex workers and adult entertainers, it also counts musicians, fitness instructors, and other influencers as creators who earn money.
According to several widely-shared tweets from content creators, OnlyFans changed its policies around the same time that Thorne charged $200 for a PPV photo that she advertised as “naked,” but was not. Creators claimed that purchasers requested their money back from the app in such great numbers that OnlyFans changed its policy.
Creators have said that OnlyFans now limits them from charging more than $50 for a PPV along with capping tips at $100. The policy also states that creators have to wait 30 days instead of seven to receive a payout. Creators are blaming Thorne for the new policy change, claiming it’s so the app can “pay all those people back and prevent such a massive chargeback problem in the future.”
Previously, the funds you made on OF were only pending for a week, so most creators got paid at least once a week. Imagine suddenly going from a weekly paycheck to a monthly paycheck. That’s what’s happening to 450,000 content creators.— Erika Heidewald, M.D. D.D.S. PhD Esq. (@erikaheidewald) August 28, 2020
Now about the $50 PPV and $100 tip cap. I’ve seen people who are not sex workers saying this seems “reasonable” bc you are ignorant morons talking on something you don’t understand. Sex workers don’t get paid hourly. You make larger amounts inconsistently.— Erika Heidewald, M.D. D.D.S. PhD Esq. (@erikaheidewald) August 28, 2020
In a statement to NBC News, OnlyFans denied that it made the change because of “one user.”
“Transaction limits are set to help prevent overspending and to allow our users to continue to use the site safely,” the statement said. “We value all of the feedback received since this change was implemented and we will continue to review these limits
After the policy change, sex workers and creators have said Thorne “hurt our ability to provide for ourselves.” Other critics have called Thorne a celebrity “cosplaying” as a sex worker.
Bella Thorne is one of these people. Bella Thorne does not care if sex workers can make money, if they can survive, if they can get respect for their work. She thought it would be fun to wade into our life carelessly and in doing hurt our ability to provide for ourselves.— Erika Heidewald, M.D. D.D.S. PhD Esq. (@erikaheidewald) August 28, 2020
So cute how Bella Thorne made her Onlyfans on a whim without doing an once of research on how it would impact the community and she immediately f*cked it up for us 🥰 LOVE that!— Savannah Solo 🤷🏼♀️ Onlyfans (@savannah_solo) August 28, 2020
It took 48 hours for Bella Thorne to ruin things for us OF creators/SWs because she felt like playing a pretend SWer. She scammed her subs and will never face the consequences of doing so (while the rest of us deal with it) among the general stigma of being in this field. pic.twitter.com/68MxUyQwKH— neptuneexplainsitall (@urwaifuneptune) August 28, 2020
Sex Workers are unable to get pandemic relief because of criminalization and are struggling to get people to spend $5/month on their content, meanwhile a rich celebrity makes $1 million in a day cosplaying as one. Give money to working class sex workers, not celebrity LARPers. https://t.co/Z3yg3cHVQ1— Fibromarxalgia (@comedyunism) August 26, 2020