THE head of Cork’s Sexual Violence Centre has issued a warning to young women who are profiting from posting revealing pictures of themselves online.
OnlyFans, a platform popular with adult entertainers, allows its users to upload photos, videos and live streams for fans in return for cash.
The platform is used by fitness models and glamour models and can range from everyday lifestyle posts to sexually explicit ones.
One Cork woman made €1,400 for her lingerie shots alone within two hours of setting up an account.
Another Cork user listed the bizarre requests from fans which included “black tights,” “more ass pics” and “lingerie”.
One of the posts referred to fetishes and read: “I also do special requests in the DMs (direct messages) so if you have any kinks or fetishes let me know and I’ll do my best to satisfy those xxx.”
Many of the Cork women featured are working in regular day jobs and using the service as a means to supplement their income.
Those profiting financially from the online fad can charge whatever they wish for subscriptions, starting from €4.99 a month.
But Mary Crilly from the Sexual Violence Centre warned of the hidden cost of these sort of online platforms. “We talk to women in the pornography industry who tell us how tired they are and how many injuries they have had,” she said.
“This is glamourising a very dangerous industry.
"A lot of young women might feel like this is ‘of the moment’ but when you upload a picture it’s there forever.
"All of a sudden you are not the girl who did this as a once off for fun, this is who you are now. It’s amazing how quickly this can happen. For me, all it’s doing is objectifying women all over again.”
She feared women using the site might be open to manipulation.
“Telling people how to move, how to look and what to do is a clever way of making it look like the girls are in control.
"It’s a form of manipulation. In reality, the girl cannot be in control because she has no way of knowing who is looking at the pictures or what they are doing while they are viewing them. The person uploading these photographs might feel good for that moment but it is a shortlived feeling.”
Ms Crilly expressed fear about the long term repercussions for women flaunting explicit content online.
“It’s gotten to a stage where if you don’t agree with these things you are seen as a prude. What a lot of women don’t realise is that in another four or five years time your photos could pop up again and start doing the rounds on a completely different site.”