A woman wearing a watch while accessing OnlyFans. The time reads one minute, 37 seconds, and 7 milliseconds.

How Could You Spend a Mere 1 Minute and 37 Seconds on OnlyFans?

Sorry, but I'm built differently.

I am outraged, flabbergasted, bewildered, and just plain perplexed over a new report on OnlyFans. According to U.K. communications regulator Ofcom, the average U.K. adult user averaged one minute and 37 seconds daily on the platform during April 2022.

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Sorry, but I find this is far, far too little time spent on OnlyFans to my personal liking.

OnlyFans, the popular adult subscription platform, has been around since 2016. Sex workers popularized the site from its inception, turning it into one of the best ways to subscribe to a sex worker and support their content. But OnlyFans didn’t gain widespread recognition until the COVID-19 pandemic began, when laid off, furloughed, and financially strained internet users began creating content on the platform to keep themselves afloat. The site’s overnight popularity served as a major turning point for recognition of online sex work as work, in part because so many social media users knew somebody who created content on OnlyFans during the pandemic.

More than just a quick click

I’m both an OnlyFans creator and user, and believe me, I get why someone would only spend a minute and 37 seconds on the site. Some people are hopping onto OnlyFans, looking at their favorite model’s content, rubbing one out, and hopping off. Whereas a regular Twitter or Tumblr user might frequently check the site between meetings, after work, and late at night while hanging out on Discord calls, your average daily OnlyFans session is going to be shorter on average and less frequent overall.

Or, as Daily Record reporter Jon Brady put it, “OnlyFans: 1 minute 37 seconds. Christ lads.”


But as much as I understand the average OnlyFans user’s relationship with the platform, I think that one-minute-37-seconds stat is a bit misleading. Not all of us are necessarily hopping onto the platform to quickly crank one out in the office bathroom after lunch. Which, apparently, is another common phenomenon in the U.K. (over one-third have done it, to be precise).

In my case, I actually prefer to use OnlyFans to subscribe to a wide assortment of queer models that I regularly check. Some of these creators specialize in fetish and kink content, others are just hot trans and cis sex workers that love their queer clientele. If I sub to one of these models, I really like to dig into their content and sit with it, look through a lot of it, and return to it over and over. I’m also more likely to buy their pay-per-view content and savor it, if not outright message them and ask for customs.

All that time adds up. And If I decide to turn a night into an OnlyFans night, where I’m just browsing through the site until I go to bed, I’m usually switching or swapping between models, checking out their new stuff before going back to my personal favorites of theirs.

In other words, when I decide to spend time on OnlyFans, I’m spending a lot of time on OnlyFans. My core OnlyFans experience lasts nowhere near two minutes, it’s more likely to last 40 minutes, maybe even an hour. Even when I timed a brief catch-up session for this article, where I scrolled through all the content I missed in the past couple days, it took me three minutes and 49 seconds to get to where I last left off.

Queering masturbation and porn

Perhaps all this should be taken with a grain of salt, as I am a bit of a power user. I love porn, I’ve literally covered it for years, they slapped me on the Wikipedia page for Overwatch porn and I even wrote a book on Tumblr porn. So my OnlyFans reflects that. I follow 25 creators in total, 17 of which paid accounts. Even when I solicited opinions from other queer OnlyFans users, I found one to two minutes wasn’t uncommon. But exceptions emerged too. Catch-up sessions were commonly lengthier, and one hypnosis kink fan I spoke to said an average session lasted around 30 minutes, as “hypnokink is better with a slow burn.”

All this gets at a larger question about queer peoples’ experiences with adult content and sexual pleasure. An article for Them on queer masturbation highlights how queer people must forge their own, unique relationship with masturbation, because “society expects you to masturbate a particular type of way based on how you’ve been socialized and/or what your genital configuration is like,” as sex educator Zoë Ligon says. I also think that’s true with regards to our relationship with pornography, how we consume it, our perception of what masturbation should look like, and how we relate to the smut we may (or may not) fap to.

Many queer people look at porn the same way they look at art: To appreciate it, adore it, and gain inspiration from. Others see porn as a vehicle for self-pleasure, but they don’t see a rush to reach an orgasm and head out. These are important experiences worth savoring, and they challenge the idea that porn is a niche, minor thing to quickly engage with and then hide away. Queer porn can be liberatory; many trans lesbians first see themselves in adult content created by other queer and trans lesbians. If you treat porn like an art form, and sex workers and adult creators as artists crafting a beautiful aesthetic of eroticism, you can engage with it for far longer than a couple minutes. And you can change your relationship with masturbation as a result.

“‘[Q]ueering’ masturbation might simply mean to go with your body’s responses as opposed to a cookie-cutter idea of what you think masturbation should be.,” nonbinary sex worker Jiz Lee told Them. “Sex is unique, or queer if you will, because while some things might be considered ‘common,’ there’s really no such thing as ‘normal.'”

It’s time to tear down the tyranny of the quick and dirty fap session. There’s a kaleidoscope of pleasure to be had far beyond it. You can spend an hour edging, you can masturbate without orgasm, you can swap porn with friends and get each other turned on, and you can also do what I do: Treat porn as something to curate and refine tastes in while supporting the wonderful folks creating it. Maybe, or maybe not, with a wank along the way.

(Featured image: Ana Valens)

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Ana Valens
Ana Valens (she/her) is a reporter specializing in queer internet culture, online censorship, and sex workers' rights. Her book "Tumblr Porn" details the rise and fall of Tumblr's LGBTQ-friendly 18+ world, and has been hailed by Autostraddle as "a special little love letter" to queer Tumblr's early history. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her ever-growing tarot collection.