Move Over, Metaverse! Sunroom is Here to Brighten Things Up
Watch out, Zuck! Sunroom is coming for you.
Sunroom is a new social media platform that launches today, so it’s time to secure those usernames, babes!
“Women create the most sought-after content on the internet,” Sunroom declares. “And yet, it feels like every time we put ourselves out there to make money, we’re judged for asking to be paid. We’re scolded for showing too much skin, for being too loud, or for our ‘objectionable’ content. It’s a can’t-win scenario, over and over. But we don’t stay bothered. We just say bye 😘”
Co-founded by Lucy Mort, who was the design director at Hinge, and Michelle Battersby, a former marketing director at Bumble, Sunroom is kind of like if you took Patreon, OnlyFans, TikTok and Instagram, chucked them in a Nutribullet, and then took the most aesthetic photo of the juice possible.
Sunroom’s intention, however, is to carve out a lane of its own, and create a space for creators who are sick of being censored, shadow-banned and ripped off.
“We just heard so many stories from mostly women and non-binary creators who really had a hard time on platforms like TikTok and Instagram with the sorts of content they were doing,” Battersby told TechCrunch.
“Sometimes it was more body-positive content, sometimes they were doing sexual wellness content and Instagram and TikTok just got to the point where they’re heavily, heavily moderating that content… these creators are shadow-banned, their accounts are taken down without notice, they don’t get the same distribution on algorithms that they typically did.”
Their company manifesto states that “while Sunroom is made for women creators, it isn’t some exclusive girls’ club.
“Making money on Sunroom is dedicated to women and non-binary people, but everyone is welcome to join and support our creators and their work.”
For now, there are only 100 creators on the app, and Sunroom plans to grow its platform slowly, in order to be able to moderate content properly.
“We never want to automate a decision that affects a creator’s paycheck,” Battersby said.
“This is an important part of our values and how we’re going to differentiate ourselves. We’ve set this business up to scale with caution.”
One interesting feature Sunroom boasts, however, is the use of anti-screenshot technology, which ensures that creators’ content doesn’t get stolen and splattered all over the internet. It’s an industry first, and it’s called, appropriately, sunblock.
“A woman’s body, creativity, and money are her business, and we want women creators to have an entrepreneurial space that is really, truly theirs to own,” Sunroom’s manifesto states.
Part of this, of course, is getting paid.
“… The problem that a lot of your women and nonbinary creators face is sort of an apprehension around monetization or a fear that they’re going to be judged or labeled as a sellout when they ask to be compensated for their content or their time,” Mort told TechCrunch.
Currently, the app offers a few different ways for paid creators to make money. There’s monthly subscriptions, tips, and reactions. Sunroom will typically take about 20% of what creators earn, but the Sunroom OGs will only pay 10% of their earnings, and Black, indigenous and hispanic creators will only pay 15%.
“We… want you to get rich from following your frequency, because making money on your own terms is a form of liberation,” says Sunroom. “Women have been shamed for monetising themselves for too long — there’s power in putting a price on your own product, and we hope to put more of that power out in the world.”