Twitter Considered Allowing Adult Content Creators to Sell OnlyFans-Style Paid Subscriptions: REPORT
A newly published report suggests that Twitter considered launching a subscription-based service for adult content — much like OnlyFans — earlier this year.
In recent years, Twitter has become one of the few large social media platforms where adult content such as porn is permissible. The Verge noted that many OnlyFans creators even use the app to promote their content that is otherwise hidden behind a paywall.
“Adult content was a huge differentiator for Twitter, and for those [working] on revenue, it was an untapped resource,” a former employee told the outlet. While some were afraid that Twitter would make a move to ban porn like Tumblr did and OnlyFans considered, it appears that they were actively considering a different approach.
However, the social media giant ran into multiple problems along the way that derailed the plans, at least for the moment.
Those problems were flagged by a group of employees referred to as a Red Team, according to The Verge. The group was organized to consider the possible risks and rewards of a project that was referred to as Adult Content Monetization (ACM).
Worst amongst them was the fear that Twitter wouldn't be able to moderate adult content in a way that safely allowed them to monetize it.
“Twitter cannot accurately detect child sexual exploitation and non-consensual nudity at scale,” a report from earlier this year determined.
According to The Verge, Twitter's system for identifying child sexual exploitation or inappropriate content featuring minors is dated and has previously been flagged by employees as needing updating.
Katie Rosborough, a spokeswoman for Twitter, told the outlet that Twitter did put the project on pause upon receiving the report.
“Twitter has zero tolerance for child sexual exploitation,” she said. “We aggressively fight online child sexual abuse and have invested significantly in technology and tools to enforce our policy. Our dedicated teams work to stay ahead of bad-faith actors and to help ensure we’re protecting minors from harm — both on and offline.”
Another Red Team was created to consider a motion called Adult Creator Monetization, which also presented several similar risks and benefits.
The Verge report noted that Twitter's priorities have seemingly shifted to detecting bot accounts and spam on the app, seemingly at the urging of potential buyer Elon Musk.
The billionaire purchased the app earlier this year. However, he has since attempted to back out of the deal. The Wall Street Journal noted that he reached out to Twitter in writing in what they described as a second attempt to nullify the purchase this week.