Bella Thorne’s older sister, Kaili Thorne, has come to the former Disney star’s defence after she copped intense backlash for joining and subsequently making millions on OnlyFans.
Kaili, 28, also sells content on OnlyFans and appears to have joined the X-rated subscription site in June, several months before her famous younger sister.
Bella, 22, came under fire over the weekend for earning a record $2.72million in just two days selling risqué snaps of herself in an attempt to ‘normalise’ sex work and research for a film role.
Other OnlyFans users, many of whom consider themselves full-time sex workers, believe the actor’s foray into adult entertainment ‘ruined’ the platform because it prompted OnlyFans to change their policies.
Following Bella’s big payday, OnlyFans moved to prevent users from charging more than $54 for pay-per-view content and capped ‘fans’ from tipping over $135. Creators will now also be forced to wait 30 days to be paid as opposed to the seven days it was previously.
OnlyFans has since denied the recent changes are related to Bella and said in a statement, “Any changes to transaction limits are not based on any one user.”
In an Instagram Story that’s since expired, Kaili took aim at accusations that her older sister was the catalyst for the tighter restrictions, which sex workers say have severely impacted their earning potential.
“Sex work is short lived. MY SISTER DID NOT DAMAGE YOUR LIVELIHOOD,” she said.
“You physically can't sell sex after a certain point in your life. Sorry for cutting that short,” she added.
One Instagram user pointed out that some OnlyFans users may not be able to ‘feed their children or themselves’ due to competition from ‘celebrity’ users like Bella and Kaili as well as the newly introduced pricing caps.
In response, Kaili suggested that they look for other employment: “Wait. A. Table,” she replied.
Another user commented: “I would also like to clarify that what you do IS sex work. Selling nude photos online is sex work. If telling yourself you’re not a sex worker helps you sleep at night and feel less insecure about doing it so be it”.
Kaili, however, made her opinions on sex work clear to Page Six, saying: “I’m saying that since sex is not ‘work’ to me, I don't consider it a job to me. I’m not saying it about anyone else. What people do for a living is their choice.”
Bella sparks backlash
Sex workers accused Bella of ‘ruining’ OnlyFans after she allegedly scammed subscribers by promising nude photos for $200, only for her to be wearing underwear in the snaps.
Others questioned how she intended to ‘normalise’ sex work when she isn’t actually sharing naked snaps.
However, she denied this to the Los Angeles Times, saying the claims on social media were falsified.
She also told the publication that she joined OnlyFans to do research for a movie she is making with director Sean Baker.
“It’s a feature we are researching as I’m living it currently,” she said.
“What are the ins and outs? What does a platform like this do to its users? What’s the connective material between your life and your life inside the world of OnlyFans?
“How can it change your life for the worse and the better? How far are you willing to go, and how far do you WANT to go?
“You can be me, or this talented girl from Montana, and OnlyFans could change your life — if you want it to, of course.”
Director Sean Baker, however, denied Bella’s claims, saying in a statement on Twitter, “I would like to make it clear that the news of me making a film (documentary or fiction narrative) about OnlyFans and using Bella Thorne as research is false.
“I'm NOT attached to this project. I'm actually in development on two features that I've put years of research into and neither of these films have anything to do with Ms. Thorne or OnlyFans.”
Many OnlyFans users say as a white celebrity, she will never have the same experience of an actual sex worker who has likely faced a negative stigma for their work.
The fact she earned so much so quickly also has users worried the general public will think joining OnlyFans is a way to make quick, easy money rather than a full-time job which it is for many.
Stephanie Michelle, an L.A.-based performer who has been on the site for two years told the LA Times, “By Bella saying this is just an ‘experiment’ or using it for ‘research’ really degrades our work.”
“If she wanted to know how sex workers really live, she could have easily shadowed any number of creators working in L.A. full time.
“Bella herself will never get the authentic sex worker experience she craves because she is a celebrity. Making millions as a sex worker on your first week is not a universal experience.”
Bella ‘truly sorry’ for OnlyFans
The former Disney star later took to Twitter to apologise, saying she joined the site in the hopes to ‘normalise the stigma’ around sex work.
In a series of tweets, she wrote, “Remove the stigma behind sex, sex work, and the negativity that surrounds the word SEX itself by bringing a mainstream face to it that’s what I was trying to do, to help bring more faces to the site to create more revenue for content creators on the site.”
“I wanted to bring attention to the site, the more people on the site the more likely of a chance to normalize the stigmas, And in trying to do this I hurt you.
“I have risked my career a few times to remove the stigma behind sex work, porn, and the natural hatred people spew behind anything sex related. I wrote and directed a porn against the high brows of my peers and managers because I WANTED to help with the stigma behind sex.”
She finished, “I am a mainstream face and when you have a voice, a platform, you try to use you in helping others and advocate for something bigger than yourself. Again in this process I hurt you and for that I’m truly sorry.”
Bella also added that she was meeting up with Only Fans to speak about the new restrictions put on creators and find out why they were implemented, "This is f***ed up and I’m sorry."
She asked people to comment with their ideas or concerns that she could bring up in the meeting and for people to send her their Only Fans links or pictures so she could promote them.
There have been calls for Bella to donate her millions to sex workers in need however she has yet to publically address those suggestions.
Additional reporting by Marni Dixit.