The joy of French motorways

The news that Heineken, the Dutch brewer, has sold its business in Russia to a local buyer for a token $1 – at a loss of €300 million, but with job guarantees for 1,800 Russian workers – raises moral issues about when and how multinationals should withdraw from pariah states. A database compiled by Yale professor and corporate responsibility campaigner Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, tracking 1,586 foreign operators in Russia since the invasion of Ukraine, counts 534 as having made a clean exit versus 219 (including BT and some smaller UK-listed companies, alongside a plethora of Chinese names) ‘digging in’ for business as usual. The rest, global brands and pharma giants among

Why is anyone still defending OnlyFans?

Starting in October, OnlyFans, which has 130 million users, two million contributors and billions in revenue will ban its creators from posting pornographic material on its site, which many sex workers use to sell explicit content. Nude photos and videos will still be permitted provided they are consistent with OnlyFans’ policy, the company has announced. As soon as the announcement was made, the narrative quickly focused on how unfair and discriminatory this move was, with many saying that the victims of the ban would be ‘sex workers’. The BBC suggested the porn ban would be a ‘“kick in the teeth” for creators’. And one commentator argued, ‘OnlyFans grew off the back

‘The internet raised me’: the strange world of online star Belle Delphine

Belle Delphine lives in a mock Tudor house in a gated community in Hove. It’s necrotic, and soothing. You could be anywhere, and this is apt. Belle lives on the internet, where she entertains her subscribers, who pay $35 a month through the website OnlyFans. She is 21, and she grew up on the internet. ‘It raised me,’ she says. I watch one of her films before we meet. It shows her dressed as a Disney princess in a long pink wig and small clothes. She attacks herself with paint and rides a fluffy unicorn while shouting. Is the unicorn the internet? Is she the unicorn? I hate the film

There’s nothing ’empowering’ about the sex work on OnlyFans (OF) is the latest kid on the block to be billed as a safe, consequence-free way of selling sex and home-grown porn that empowers women. The social media site is similar to Instagram, but users pay to subscribe to creators’ feeds. The top earners on OF are women whose subscribers are male. These men pay between £5 to £20 a month to view images considered too pornographic for Instagram. Subscribers can also direct message women and pay tips to get personalised videos or photos, ‘depending on his individual sexual tastes.’ OF is a huge money machine and is doing extremely well during the Covid-19 lockdown. It now has around