Bella Thorne has responded to the controversy over her OnlyFans account after she was accused of “scamming” people and "ruining" the platform for sex workers.
In a series of tweets, the actor apologised and said that she had intended to “advocate for something bigger than [herself].”
So what happened?
OnlyFans is a platform where people pay a subscription fee to access exclusive content from someone they want to follow. Many sex workers use it as a way of controlling and making their own income flexibly, and credit the platform with revolutionising the industry. Last week Thorne reportedly made $2 million on OnlyFans in a very short time after announcing her new account.
When Thorne announced her foray into OnlyFans, she said she was hoping to regain control over her image after she had been forced to leak nude photos of herself in 2019 after allegedly being blackmailed. She reportedly made between $1m and $2m dollars in the week after announcing her OnlyFans account.
But a lot of sex workers weren’t happy.
Many sex workers have complained that Thorne’s presence on OnlyFans has prompted the platform to bring in some new rules that limit certain streams of income they can receive. These include caps on ‘tips’ and the amount a person can pay to see select messages (pay-per-view or PPV). Now OnlyFans content creators are limited to charging $50 for PPV items and tips they can receive are capped at $50 at a time.
It hasn't been confirmed whether the new rules were because of Thorne. And she has now pledged to meet with them to discuss this issue.
But people took it that way regardless and were angry. Many sex workers accused her of “scamming” people and “ruining” the platform.
Now Thorne has apologised for the whole debacle.
She wrote that she had “wanted to bring attention to the site, the more people on the site the more likely of a chance to normalize the stigmas.”
She said her original goal had been to “remove the stigma behind sex, sex work, and the negativity that surrounds the word SEX itself by bringing a mainstream face to it,” as well as to “help bring more faces to the site to create more revenue for content creators on the site.”
Thorne didn't address specific allegations, but conceded that she had "hurt people", saying:
Again in this process I hurt you and for that I’m truly sorry.
I’m meeting with [OnlyFans] about the new restrictions to find out why.
It remains to be seen whether OnlyFans will reconsider these new rules, which have been largely unpopular with its users online.