A site like Buttrcup [NSFW] is hard to explain. Because the world is awash in “risqué” photography, why should we pay creators? And why does the world need another site dedicated to “sexy, risqué and yet not too explicit” content? Sure, because good, well-lit content that can actually benefit models is almost impossible to find.
Created by Molly Murphy and Michael Edwards the site launched in October and is now at 2,500 active users, including creators. Edwards is a New York-based photographer and Molly Murphy worked at pleasure product brand Jimmyjane.
The site is completely bootstrapped. “Though there have been a few start-ups in the sexuality realm such as that have been funded, this category, while it has huge potential, is largely ignored by VC’s because of the taboos,” said Murphy.
“We have compared the content to Playboy, we have some really great photographers and models who are providing content that is sexy, risqué and yet not too explicit. We say ‘it is nudity, yet non porn,’” said Murphy. “Also, unlike Playboy the creators are in complete control of what they create, so it is like self-publishing. For the women especially, there is an ethical element in that they are in complete in control of their own content and image which is important when it comes to sexual boundaries. Also unlike Playboy, they receive money directly from each subscriber and there is no cap on how much they can earn.”
This sort of fan-sponsored photography is becoming more and more common, especially as the adult industry is decimated by the Tube sites. As outlined by Jon Ronson in his series, The Butterfly Effect, the rise of free pornography has forced filmmakers and photographers to find different ways to make money. This includes bespoke porn and sites like Buttrcup that offer a bit of titillation alongside some true human interaction.
“Buttrcup is a network of models, photographers and creative who are looking to post images and videos with more flexibility than most social media sites will allow,” said Murphy. “It gives them a place to promote their digital archives, self-publish and earn money directly from their fans.”
After all if we won’t pay for porn anymore how will the world support its tireless creators?