Demoneitizing, banning explicit content, ‘restructuring’ … it’s all essentially the same thing, shutting down.
Waking up to find out my biggest income source won’t be available after December 31st was a kick to the stomach.
It’s all well and good to seem like the intimidating dominatrix online, but sometimes I flounder. Sometimes the instability of a consistently demonised industry feels like an impossible thing to survive in, especially now. But I’m a scrappy fucker. I’ve been in some form of survival mode since my teens, so this extra pressure isn’t new, just … disappointing.
Whilst I am still overwhelmed, I gave myself a few hours to get it out of my system and then returned to work because there is no rest. Especially now. There’s no respite to take time and recover from the knowledge I’m going to have to work even harder somehow. I honestly don’t know where I’m going to pull all this extra energy from. My body is already at its limits, and I’m barely even doing anything at the moment.
At the moment, it feels like sex workers have no choice but to put their all into sites that routinely turn around and mock their loyalty by giving 30 days’ notice of site essentially closures – AVN, removing content without allowing it to be re-uploaded because ‘it hasn’t sold as often as we want it to’ – IWC, and banning the content that made the site popular – Patreon, OF, Tumblr.
We have no other options. People keep creating new sites, but we don’t need new ones. We need voices. We need decriminalisation. We need people to listen to us.
Sex work isn’t just a sex worker issue. It’s a disability issue, a trans and gender non-conforming issue, a BIPOC issue … it’s a diverse issue that crosses divides in all communities.
It is best to work under the assumption that any site could collapse at any time, and don’t assume you’ll be given any warning. Whilst part of me wants to offer a list of the ‘best’ or ‘better’ sites – I could have sworn AVN Stars would have been the one that stuck, part of me thinks that no site is 100% safe at the moment, clip, cam, phone or fanclub. It all feels very ‘doomsday’, but we’re in a time of great upheaval and waiting for the dust to settle.
I will say that I am learning towards LoyalFans (affiliate link) combined with another I’ve yet to decide on and considering revisiting live cam. My clips will be ‘plainer’, a focus on JOI, CEI, and worship with a lack of taboo, blackmail, Hypno and executrix, just in case of future content restrictions from Mastercard (who are we kidding, there will be more) and looking into other forms of income will be a priority.
It doesn’t matter how long they’ve been in the game, and it doesn’t matter if they are industry giants, do not invest your time and energy into just one site.
I’ve always been a big believer in diversifying your income, but I’m now also a big believer in completely eschewing site loyalty. With a lot of hesitation and fuelled by exhaustion, I went ‘loyal’ to AVN and didn’t cross-post, and within two months, it burnt me. Sites will try to get you to stay loyal by offering affiliate schemes if you only post on their site, but in the long run, it will hurt your business if they fail. Where possible, have multiple platforms per category – clip, cam, phone, fanclub, at any one time with the possibility of having backups ready.
What to do next?
- Back up everything – cloud-based and a hard copy, and organise your content into folders.
- Some sites auto-watermark content with their branding, so keep a ‘plain’ edited copy if you watermark your pictures with your logo and don’t want them to clash.
- The most important thing right now is to build an email list. However, every popular email provider I’ve messaged so far strictly forbids not just sex work but anything to do with sex – Flodesk, AWeber, MailerLite (I’ve sent emails out to more). You can be ‘sneaky with it’ and use a site until they kick you off, but if you do that, update your email lists – download them once or twice a week, depending on your signup rates. For lesser-known companies, Ynot is a good adult industry alternative. Offer a free video or photos to get someone to sign up and keep them engaged.
- Take time to process change because this is going to be a long road where change keeps happening even after the dust settles. Make yourself mentally malleable so you can prepare to move again if you need to.
- Work on the site until it drops. Rinse everything you can out of that site from the traffic it holds.
- Save your username across multiple platforms, both old and new, so if you do end up moving, your username is ready for you.
- Add content before announcing a new site so people want to join right then and there. An empty page gives a preview of nothing.
Not sure how to move to a new subscription site? I made a guide.