It’s important to sign up and reserve your username on all the major content monetization platforms so you don’t have to struggle with keeping your brand name the same across all platforms. And whenever a new platform launches, it does seem prudent to sign up for it to explore it. At the same time, I would advise caution with using any new platform without extensive research and vetting.
The concerns of using an unstable platform.
Over the 16 years I’ve been in the adult industry, I’ve seen platforms come and go with disastrous consequences, ranging from going out of business before paying out the last payments owed to models to companies that were unfamiliar with basic cyber security measures and doxed (exposed) the personal information of performers. I’ve even seen websites masquerading as platforms, but likely were only created just to steal the personal information and credit card data of anyone who signs up.
If you are willing to accept dubious consequences for your own payments or personal data, it is still possible that flaky and unreliable companies will impact your own customer base’s faith in your brand by proxy – after a bad experience on one platform they may choose not to buy from you again for quite some time. The wealthiest of clients are often the most cautious about where they buy from.
Here’s how you can vet the platforms you get involved with.
I’m not trying to scare you, just being honest about concerns you should keep in mind. We all want to stay safe while exploring new options. I’d like to share what I personally do in the process of vetting a platform before I become a verified seller and enter my banking details or upload any paywalled content:
My first step is networking with other creators using that platform and asking them how they feel about it. I usually use Twitter, and search through my mutuals for anyone who lists a link to that platform in their display name, bio, or tweets. I start by reading what they say about the platform on their page. If I have some rapport with a model discussing the platform extensively, I will DM them and say something like, “hey, I noticed you are using (BLANK) platform, do you like it? I’m thinking about signing up and wondering if you have had a good experience.” Sometimes people will share cautionary tales privately that they are unable to share publicly. This is one of the reasons that networking with our peers is critical for staying safe in the industry.
Beware anyone hard selling you the sign up with a referral code, though. Many models have been known to overlook serious concerns with a business in favor of getting a bonus for encouraging sign ups. Using a referral code when you sign up is a nice way to say thank you to a model who’s helped you out! Just make sure to look out for anyone who brushes past any concerning behavior from the platform in question.
No matter what input I get, I always take it under consideration and measure out the risks. If most creators I speak to have a good experience and only one has had a bad one, that isn’t necessarily a huge red flag for me. But if everyone mentions low traffic, missed payments, rude or creepy staff, or other serious concerns, I might skip that platform for a while. You can always sign up later if you see if those issues are addressed in the future.
I also usually look up the platform on Google News, Xbiz and Wikipedia, trying to locate the company that created the platform and do some research on who they are and what they are about. I personally like to see that the platform has been operating without any major catastrophes for two years, or that their founders have a long track record of successful endeavors.
Finally, I like to write their customer service with just a few questions. I ask genuine questions about their service, and I wait and see how long it takes them to respond. I also evaluate how genuine the response is. A copy and paste answer that doesn’t fit the question I asked would be a red flag. Waiting more than two business days would also be a red flag. Go with your instincts, and stay away from any platform that makes you feel uncomfortable.
Assuming that you don’t uncover any major concerns, go ahead and sign up! Even if you don’t use the platform, having another option to explore is never a bad thing, and reserving your username can be critical.