“I started working as a gym trainer, and gym trainers are not really well paid. My mother has cancer, so I got into escorting and to be honest, the market isn't great. There are many cheaters, and people who aren't really serious about hiring escorts, and just waste your time. I used to charge between Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000 for an hour. People also started reaching out to me for shoots, and I shot with the likes of Nikos Narkissos, Chris Rathore, and Andrew Adams. Adams told me about OnlyFans. During a shoot in Mumbai last year, he helped me set up my OnlyFans account, says Hyderabad native Charan Bangaram, one of the most popular Indian performers active on OnlyFans.
OnlyFans is a social media platform where content creators post content, and receive payment directly from their followers, or “fans”, via subscriptions, or one-off tips. It has around 30 million registered users and around 450,000 content creators. Little is known about the parent company, Fenix International Limited. In October 2018, Leonid Radvinsky, the owner of MyFreeCams, gained control of 75 per cent of the aforementioned parent company, and became its director, and the CEO is Tim Stokely.
Before OnlyFans, there were cam sites like MyFreeCams that provided live webcam performances by 'models'. While MyFreeCams it is still in play, Google Trends show a steady decline in people searching for it. So where are all these people heading to?
To understand why sites like MyFreeCams and OnlyFans work, let’s go back to the 2000’s, when Pornhub, XVideos, etc. began hosting pirated content from major studios on their platforms, thus devoiding these studios of their income, and leading to a drop in revenue for adult performers. Because of their subscription-based services, OnlyFans’ personalities make money without the hassle of approaching porn studios.
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