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In a stunning about-face, OnlyFans “suspends” a new ban on sexually explicit content.
Earlier this week, OnlyFans announced a sudden ban on sexually explicit content due to pressure from its banking partners. The move received fierce backlash from sex workers, many of whom are largely responsible for the platform’s success and rely on it as a key source of income. A few days after announcing the ban, the content powerhouse reversed its decision. “We have secured assurances necessary to support our diverse creator community and have suspended the planned October 1 policy change,” the firm said in a statement. “OnlyFans stands for inclusion, and we’ll continue to provide a home for all creators.” Though the platform has attempted to rebrand itself as a place for creators of all types, including celebrity users such as Cardi B and Bella Thorne, porn remains its most popular category.
The artist Shio Kusaka and architect Toshiko Mori receive the Isamu Noguchi Award.
In recognition for their contributions to art, design, and architecture, Japanese designers Shio Kusaka and Toshiko Mori have received the Isamu Noguchi Award, an honor given to those who “embody global consciousness, design innovation, and emphasis on cultural exchanges between Eastern and Western cultures.” As both women station themselves in the design hall of fame, they forward their illustrious professions as leaders of their respective fields: Kusaka’s artistic practice takes inspiration from ancient Japanese pottery and contemporary artworks and renders whimsical ceramics; Mori’s acclaimed career in architecture watches her forward a steadfast sustainability agenda through a meticulous consideration for site context, materiality, and eco-conscious programs. The award will be presented during the annual benefit at the Isamu Noguchi Foundation’s Garden Museum later this fall.
Visa buys a $150,000 CryptoPunk for its collection, triggering an NFT market rush.
Need more proof that NFTs are more than a fleeting phenomenon? Visa has officially entered the ring. Last week, the multinational financial corporation bought a CryptoPunk—one of 10,000 highly sought-after 8-bit-style pixel art images of eccentric characters on the Ethereum blockchain—for 49.5 ETH, or roughly $150,000. The news offered yet another signal of the NFT market’s acceptance into the mainstream and set off a domino effect: within an hour of the purchase, 90 CryptoPunks sold for a combined $20 million. On August 23, combined sales topped $86 million, which broke a single day record.
Airbnb is preparing to fund temporary homes for more than 20,000 Afghan refugees.
Fearing militant reaction from the Taliban, hordes of Afghan residents are scrambling to escape the nation. The United States announced the evacuation of 48,000 people, but the August 31 airlift deadline imposed by the Taliban reiterates the urgency for relief operations. Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky announced that the platform will sponsor temporary homes for 20,000 refugees amid the humanitarian crisis. Although there is an ambiguity with the duration of housing and the volume of funding, Chesky hopes that this pledge will spur other companies to take a similar stance. “The displacement and resettlement of Afghan refugees in the U.S. and elsewhere is one of the biggest humanitarian crises of our time,” says Chesky. “We feel a responsibility to step up.”
The Smithsonian conducts a two-year initiative that examines the legacy of race.
The ongoing dichotomy of art and race in museums often sees them balance historically white collections with a diverse range of artists. The Smithsonian, however, is taking conversations about racism beyond the institution. Following a $25 million grant from Bank of America, Smithsonian Institution secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III has launched a campaign titled “Our Shared Future: Reckoning With Our Racial Past” that aims to engender a safe space to study the racist heritage of the U.S. through virtual summits, town hall meetings, and pop-up experiences. “We can’t solve the problems of race in America ourselves,” comments Bunch. “But we can give the public the tools to stimulate those conversations to help people understand race beyond Black and white.”
The baby on Nirvana’s Nevermind cover is now suing the band for child pornography.
Three decades after Nevermind sold 30 million copies, propelled Nirvana to worldwide fame, and became the defining document for Gen X-ers, Spencer Elden, the naked baby gracing its cover, is suing the band for child pornography. On Tuesday, Elden filed a federal lawsuit against the estate of Kurt Cobain, former Nirvana bandmates David Grohl and Krist Novoselic, and Cobain’s widow, Courtney Love, among other parties, claiming that they, along with Geffen Records, profited from his naked image. “Defendants knowingly produced, possessed, and advertised commercial child pornography depicting Spencer, and they knowingly received value in exchange for doing so,” reads the lawsuit. Elden claims he suffered “permanent harm” due to his association with the album, which includes emotional distress and a “lifelong loss of income-earning capacity.” One of his lawyers, who claims that Elden has gone to therapy for years to reckon with how the album cover has impacted him, says that he “hasn’t met anyone who hasn’t seen his genitalia.”
New York overtakes San Francisco as the country’s most expensive rental market.
As real-estate prices in U.S. cities climb to pre-pandemic levels, New York has reportedly outclassed San Francisco in the rental market for the first time since 2014—the former experienced a 20 percent jump in rent while the latter saw a less than five percent spike. For instance, the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in New York is $2,810. A StreetEasy report notes how numerous high-end zip codes in Manhattan, such as East Village, Flatiron, and the Financial District, surpass their initial asking price pre-Covid. Some argue that the resurgence is a result of landlords jacking up the prices due to heightened demand.