When Sex Workers Speak, Who Listens?

OnlyFans has its “Acceptable Use Guidelines”On August 19 to ban“ sexually engaging content or behavior ”and to restrict, if not completely ban, porn on the platform. Then just six days later, afterwards Outrage from sex workers and allies online, it resigned. The company said it would “suspend” the policy changes. However, it has not undone them, leaving low wage earners in persistent precariousness. At any moment, OnlyFans or the banks could cut sex workers off again.

OnlyFans’ initial decision to ban porn on the site shows how supposedly legal online sex work is in reality criminalized. This is a problem that sex workers have pointed out over and over again and against which they have been organizing for years – but too much of society does not listen to it. This refusal to really hear what sex workers need to protect themselves is at the core of “political hurephobia,” a concept developed by Fordham legal scholar Chi Adanna Mgbako to explain how state violence against sex workers is is carried out and justified by the government.

Loss of access to secure online areas brings sex workers especially black sex workers, in danger. “Isolating stigmatized workers during the best of times leads to police and community violence,” Philadelphia Red Umbrella Alliance noticed. And the consequences can be particularly serious for the disabled and drug consumption Sex workers who may rely on digital platforms for a range of chronic health problems. So are these locations and surveillance technologies suppress and silence sex workers who advocate social justice Work through punitive content moderation and deplatforming. Danielle Blunt, a Dominatrix and co-organizer with Chopping // scrum whose Instagram account was just permanently deleted on August 30th, told me that “denying access to technology is a form of structural violence”.

Cycles of use, discrediting and removal of sex workers from platforms like OnlyFans are partially on financial discrimination against people who sell sex. MasterCard, for example, recently made transactions on Pornhub after a decade-long crusade over both parties led by Christian. locked Anti-porn lobbyists. Few sex workers were surprised when OnlyFans suddenly banned porn. “Sex workers losing access to spaces is nothing new. There is a deep story“Said Blunt.

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