Opinion: What Is Gay-For-Pay And How Does It Impact Our Society’s Perception Of Homosexuality?

Opinion: What Is Gay-For-Pay And How Does It Impact Our Society’s Perception Of Homosexuality?

Originally published on Screenshot Magazine


What Is Gay-For-Pay?

Gay-for-pay has been a porn sensation for nearly two decades now. I personally found myself enamoured with it since early adolescence. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term, gay-for-pay stands for porn featuring men who identify as straight but perform gay sex in exchange for money. The advent of websites like OnlyFans and JustForFans made this phenomenon even more ubiquitous, with thousands of ostensibly heterosexual men dabbling in gay action for pay.

Many believe that this trend accelerates the shattering of gender stereotypes and is an indication of our society’s discarding of sexual labels. But is this truly the case? Or does the gay-for-pay obsession only solidify our toxic relationship with masculinity and deep-rooted homophobia?


Where To Find Gay-For-Pay

Nearly all the major gay porn studios today, including Sean Cody, MEN.com and Corbin Fisher, produce enormous volumes of content portraying supposedly straight dudes getting tricked or lured into having gay sex. Other websites, such as Broke Straight Boys, are dedicated exclusively to making films featuring young heterosexual bros reluctantly engaging in gay action for money (seeing their bewildered faces as they begrudgingly accept a stack of cash has been a relentless turn-on for me as a teenager).

On platforms like OnlyFans and JustForFans, where people have the ability to produce their own adult content, men who identify as straight produce all sorts of content directed at gay people—whether by experimenting on their own or doing collaborations with other men (most of whom also classify themselves as heterosexual).

Some argue that by allowing themselves to experiment with other men, even though it’s supposedly strictly for financial purposes, these guys break the rigid conventions around masculinity. In an article titled The Straight Men Doing Gay-For-Pay On OnlyFans And JustForFans published on Dazed, journalist Josh Schot writes that men performing gay-for-pay sex “are proof that there are innumerable expressions of heterosexuality,” adding that, they are “contributing to a rupture in the expectations that are placed on heterosexual men.”

It is true that many interviews conducted with gay-for-pay porn actors reveal an overall casual approach by the actors to their work. Straight men running OnlyFans and JustForFans accounts seem to especially represent a shift in attitude toward male-on-male action—describing it as a no-big-deal type of thing that they do not bother hiding.

Yet for all the supposed ‘sexual-liberation’ promoted by gay-for-pay actors, claiming that they “detoxify masculinity” – as stated by Schot – seems to be a bit of a stretch, considering that the actors’ perceived heterosexuality is their biggest selling point and allure. The entire emphasis in this type of porn is placed on the guys’ professed straightness and willingness to engage in a sexual activity that they don’t ordinarily find appealing. This is particularly evident in OnlyFans and JustForFans content, where guys proudly announce that they’re ‘pushing their boundaries’ by performing gay sex. This implies that same-sex action is still very much taboo; a boundary, as they say.

What’s more is that gay-for-pay content overwhelmingly features broad-shouldered, muscular men who are dripping with testosterone, almost invariably refer to one another as ‘bro’ and never miss an opportunity to flex their muscles and bounce their pecs at the camera. It seems to me, then, that these guys don’t so much “rupture the expectations” placed on heterosexual men as they overcompensate for violating them. To a great extent, gay-for-pay porn doesn’t upend mainstream tropes of masculinity, but rather reinforces them.

But what is at the root of queer men’s obsession with guys identifying as straight performing gay sex? The most obvious explanation is the fantasy that’s associated with it—the thrill of attaining what is supposedly unattainable or, to some, even forbidden.

It could also be seen as an indication of internal homophobia entrenched in the psyche of many queer men, and a primal desire to win the validation of the alpha male. Our glorification of textbook machismo and rejection of any type of behaviour that is visibly queer or feminine as inferior and unappealing could be viewed as testaments to lingering and unresolved shame about our identities.


Gay-For-Pay Can’t Take Full Credit

There’s no denying that our society is becoming increasingly tolerant of diverse expressions of gender and sexuality, and the fact that more men who identify as straight allow themselves to engage in gay sex is certainly a byproduct of this unfolding change.

But claiming that these men or porn studios are the impetus of this shift in consciousness is downright misleading, for by emphasizing the actors’ heterosexuality and masculinity so bluntly, gay-for-pay porn perpetuates restrictive perceptions of gender and the classification of queerness as taboo and fundamentally flawed. After all, gay-for-pay is still all about the labels.

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  1. Lyon
    April 21, 08:28 Reply

    Exactly what I’ve been thinking about for some days now. Many gay guys in Nigeria totally ignore the pleasure and satisfaction and fulfillment that comes with homosexuality, and go after those rich men who can pay. That’s prostitution, if you ask me. If a man wants to take care of you, fine. But don’t look down on others, who probably offer better sex, just because they don’t drive flashy cars and have fat bank accounts.

    There’s a lot more in the community. There’s the companionship that you may not get from those daddies. They may not give you a shoulder to cry on at times when money cannot answer it all.

    My point: It hurts to realise that prostitution is taking over the Nigerian gaybourhood.

    • Zen
      April 21, 08:47 Reply

      Lol. How is your comment related to the article? What’s the link?

    • Pink Panther
      April 21, 08:48 Reply

      You do realize that not everyone wants “companionship” or “a shoulder to cry on”. Not everyone wants the guys who can offer “better sex” (I don’t even know how you came to this conclusion that broke guys give better sex than rich daddies), and that just because of person wants someone who can give them the creature comforts in life somehow makes them a lesser human being than those who want the basics.

      You say it hurts to realize that prostitution is taking over the Nigerian gaybourhood. Hurts who? Who does it hurt? You? How?

      Plus I don’t even understand how prostitution became a thing when this post isn’t even about that. Except to say that you’re basically in here shaming the prerogative of people to transact sex.

      We need to STOP policing people sexual needs which does no one any harm. You like steady relationships with average Joe, fine. Do you. And let those who trade in sex do them.

      • Higwe
        April 21, 11:07 Reply

        Yooooo ??????????

        School him Pink P. ?

    • Mandy
      April 21, 08:55 Reply

      Lol. Sweetie, did you read the writeup at all?

      Gay-for-pay is defined as when a straight actor who performs homosexual acts in pornographic movies for the sole purpose of incurring monetary gain.

      That’s not the same thing as this gay prostitution you seem to have a problem with. You need to let go of your biases.

    • Queen of Queens
      April 21, 10:29 Reply

      You are right Lyon, so much “prostitution” in this part of the world. Who knows why?

    • KingB
      April 21, 19:32 Reply

      You just read my mind bro

  2. Ken
    April 21, 09:19 Reply

    Obviously most people who claim to be doing gay porn just for cash are either lieing to themselves or just pretending to be whom they are not.

    I think gay for pay just provides a cover for gay man with internalised homophobia to earn a living with little or no guilt afterwards from their trade. They don’t contribute zilt to a safer community rather they just fulfill the wild fantasies of some personal.

    So yea really to them and these studios it’s a win-win. The gay guy can continue to be straight afterwards while supplicating his internalized homophobia and fulfilling every gay fantasy. This provides endless content for those into that kind of stuff while the gay studios keep smiling to the bank.

    • Gif
      April 21, 13:08 Reply

      More like bisexual men

  3. Eric
    April 21, 13:23 Reply

    Making porn is a business. And like most businesses, it is mostly profit-oriented. And in order to sell market, sometimes, you have to go out of your way and do things you wouldn’t normally do in order to achieve that. Also, one of the main purposes of porn is to create and satisfy some sexual fantasies. As our faces are different so are our sexual fantasies. It is a turn on for some gay guys to see straight dudes engaging in gay sex. There shouldn’t be a problem if porn studios try and satisfy such fantasies. It is the same way it turns some on seeing a perceived top bottoming. That is why there may be cases of porn actors who are tops in their real sex lives bottoming on screen because they have fat asses or actors who are bottoms in real life topping on screen because they have big dicks or are very muscular. At the end of the day porn is just acting, and in acting , you don’t always get roles that suits the natural you. You have to go out of your way sometimes.So if gay-for-pay actors are pretending, absolutely nothing is wrong with that.

    “This is particularly evident in OnlyFans and JustForFans content, where guys proudly announce that they’re ‘pushing their boundaries’ by performing gay sex. This implies that same-sex action is still very much taboo; a boundary, as they say.” I have a problem with this line. A boundary does not necessarily mean a taboo. Pushing boundaries can also mean doing something you are not accustomed to or trying out new things.

    Society’s perception of homosexuality should not be based on gay porn because, number one, porn is just sex. Being a homosexual is not just about having sex with the same gender. Secondly, Porn is not “real”. It is just a fantasy and a business. Porn studios try to cater to different types of audiences that is why porn comes under many categories. Watch the one you know will turn you on and help you achieve very good orgasm and leave the rest.

  4. J
    April 22, 01:56 Reply

    Everyone needs a shoulder to cry on, we all need companionship. Just come down from your high horse stone-hearted one, build your self confidence and get rid of your insecurities… Stop being too hard on yourself, no one is perfect. We all need love, true love is the answer, it can set you free.

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