A Powys 'OnlyFans' model says the company's plans to ban explicit material earlier this month would have represented "economic censorship".

The London-based online subscription service allows content creators such as musicians, fitness instructors and sex workers to sell personalised content to subscribers, who pay between £5 and £50 per month for access.

But earlier this month it announced new guidelines on what could and could not be posted, which would have affected creators of adult content – until they were "suspended" on Wednesday.

Ariel Anderssen is a content creator from Welshpool who has been using the platform for around five years, and said OnlyFans had provided models with new-found safety – and said fears remain that the plans could be resurrected.

"It's trusting the platform that's the problem," she said.

"I get around a quarter of my income from OnlyFans each month and most of my content would still be okay under the new rules.

"The safety and freedom which OnlyFans offered was amazing. I've been modelling for 18 years and I've been assaulted on average around once per year by some random man who thinks being a photographer is just a good way to get a girl a room with him.

"All of a sudden we didn't have to take jobs that didn't feel right and if we didn't feel safe we could just work from home."

The popularity of the platform exploded during the pandemic, as people turned to the platform as a new source of income having been furloughed on a reduced salary, or made redundant.

Its user base went from around 20 million prior to the pandemic to around 120m as consumers sought online entertainment and entertainers found new ways to provide it.

Some new content providers included students and newly unemployed people seeking alternative sources of income during lockdown.

"I’m horribly sorry for creators who took up OnlyFans because of financial hardship during Covid, and don’t know the industry yet, and for anyone who needed every penny they were making on OnlyFans because they weren’t big creators yet and didn’t have multiple income streams," Ariel added.

"These are the people who I really worry about, as OnlyFans was already a 'Plan B' for lots of people who might have lost jobs through the pandemic and they're seeing that evaporate at the moment.

"I only make a relatively small part of my income through this platform but for some people who are making perhaps £2,000 a year they might be losing that as well."

Online payment service providers such as PayPal already ban users from paying for services on sites such as OnlyFans, and earlier this week, OnlyFans’ founder Tim Stokely blamed 'unfair' treatment by banks for forcing him to ban explicit content on the platform.

"The change in policy, we had no choice — the short answer is banks," he told the Financial Times.

"We pay over one million creators over $300m every month, and making sure that these funds get to creators involves using the banking sector."

A statement issued by the company yesterday (Wednesday, August 25) said the planned changes had now been "suspended".

"OnlyFans stands for inclusion and we will continue to provide a home for all creators," it said.