Paypal Strongarms Patreon to Deny “Adult” Content Creators Funding

So I just got an alarming and apologetic email from Patreon, which you can read below. Apparently PayPal threatened to freeze all creator pages unless adult content was blocked from using PayPal via Patreon.

I don’t know how many, if any, of you used PayPal as a funding source, but if you can switch it to a debit/credit card before April 1st, I would greatly appreciate it. This was extremely last minute by PayPal, and we get paid at the beginning of the month, so it’s pretty scary, especially when my writing is my main source of income now thanks to people like you!

This move to making profiles that are adult private only also means I can no longer show up in search results or be featured on Patreon, making me even more dependent on people like you. Thank you in advance, and I’m sorry for this. Please feel free to email PayPal with your frustrations about their tactics, which are totally messed up-

moldenburg@paypal.com

Here’s the letter from Patreon, which, bless them, they’re trying hard to work with me to make sure I don’t suddenly have a drop in funds:

I just wanted to let you know that we had to change your custom URL and set your Patreon page to “private.” The only difference with private pages is that users must have a specific link to view your page, as it no longer appears in our search results. 

We got a notice from Paypal this morning that they were shutting down their entire integration with Patreon because of “adult content” on our site! As you can imagine, this would be detrimental to creators – hundreds of thousands of dollars were to be “frozen” unless we flagged all adult content pages, made them private, and removed Paypal functionality from their individual pages. Paypal was extremely helpful in resolving this entire issue within a few hours.

I’m so sorry that we had to do this without warning you first, but it was SUCH an emergency! We simply had to take action to avoid a situation where creators would lose hundreds of thousands of dollars of legitimate pledges. 

We have already emailed your patrons who signed up to become your patron through Paypal, and we have asked them to switch over to a credit card. No action is needed on your part, however, if you would like to email your patrons as well, that could be helpful in converting patrons from Paypal to credit card. 

Just so you know, here is our official policy on adult content:
https://patreon.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/201872047

Thank you so much, and please be in touch if you have any questions at all.