Updated: Dec 9, 2020
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First, I want to point out that there are many positive reasons to become a webcam model. However, this post will focus on some of the more serious and negative effects it can have on your life.
People You Know Will Find Out
Some cam sites and video clip sites allow their models and users to region block. This can help prevent people you know from finding you. However, you should be prepared for the worst. If you do not want anyone in your life discovering your content then you should rethink joining.
This is because of people who will pirate your content. Your content will will be screen recorded, downloaded, and shared on tube sites all across the internet. This is a sad fact in this industry.
Relationships and Family
If people from your personal life discover your adult content it can have a negative impact on your relationships. Camming can tear families apart, ruin marriages, and make it complicated to date or develop friendships.
Many sex workers are fighting against the stigmas we face now. We believe that we deserve equal rights and respect for our consensual adult services. However, this is not the way that the majority of society sees us.
It's not usually a question of "if" but "when" personal information of yours may be leaked. Having your full name, address, or private life spread online can be scary and traumatizing. It is highly recommended that you teach yourself some basic tech skills, hire someone else, or speak with an experienced sex worker about how to keep your personal information safe before you start.
Be sure to do your research when joining a cam site. Ask veteran models for recommendations so you don't get scammed. Newer sites are not often credible and will skip on payouts or steal your private information. Some of the most popular cam sites are Chaturbate, MyFreeCams, and Streamate. Chaturbate is great for new models.
Terms of Service
Most of us ignore these lengthy documents, but it's important to read them when you are signing up. You don't want to break the rules and be banned from your income! You also want to understand your legal rights. Most sites will have a clause that any content distributed on their platform belongs to them. They can use this content however they wish and forever.
The terms of service will usually indicate payout rates. If not, you should email your cam site's support team. Most cam sites will pay 40-60% of token values. It's also good to know when you get paid. Different sites will pay daily, biweekly, or monthly. Sometimes payouts can take several weeks depending on your bank and whether or not it is an international transaction. This is important to account for because your paycheck date may not align with your bill due dates.
There are thousands of models online to compete with and a very small percentage are actually earning a stable income. Some are unable to solely rely on camming and work another job to support themselves. Sites will promise you that you can make easy money from home. It's just not true. You have to work very hard and do a lot of research.
This is an industry that receives a lot of hate and sadly it can be difficult to block it. Having a thick skin is about the only protection you can give yourself. Online harassment can sometimes be nearly impossible to report. Harassment can progress into stalking and threats. This is not as uncommon as you may think and should be seriously considered. Almost every model I have known has been stalked and harrassed at some point.
This is probably how most performers get outed to their friends and family. As mentioned earlier, region blocking will not prevent people from stealing your content and redistributing it elsewhere online. You can file a DMCA claim to have them removed but some sites don't comply. If a website it hosted outside of the United States it does not need to comply with US Copyright Laws. It's is almost impossible to have everything removed.
There are some services within the industry that you can pay to have your content searched for and removed though.
Mental and Physical Health
Camming can take a huge toll on your mental and physical health. It is important to give yourself time away from work. Since many of us work from home it can be difficult to "step out of the office". Stress, not eating, not sleeping, and working too hard will catch up to you. Don't let the money lead you into drugs and alcohol either. Camming can kind of be like a party with all of your friends so just be aware that using these too often may lead to dependency.
This is an industry that largely depends on looks and self confidence. It becomes very easy to relate your success to your self worth. Don't do this! We can become so obsessed with perfection that it's damaging. The emotional abuse adds up. Just because it's online doesn't mean that it doesn't have the same impact.
Lastly, always make sure to have your partners tested for STIs. You don't need to be in professional porn to practice safe sex.
This is an expensive industry to get involved in. If you want to be successful you need to invest into your business. Even the most basic setup requires an internet connection, a decent working computer, webcam, and lighting. If you want to keep up with your competition you will need a fully functioning home office. I recommend investing in editing software, camera equipment, an external microphone, a variety of toys, and lingerie.
What can I say? It's life and there's bound to be conflict. Be wary of who your friends are and trust no one. Always protect yourself first before jumping into things. Some people in the community will be genuine and willing to help, but it is easy to be taken advantage of as well. Spend your time focused on yourself instead of others and you will avoid a lot of drama.
Getting scammed happens to everyone. It doesn't matter how long you have been camming there will always be someone trying to take advantage of you. It is more common with new models because of inexperience. Clients will refund money, cancel giftcards, cancel gifts, and even report you after you have already given them what you thought they paid for. Make sure you 100% have your payment before giving them what they have ordered.
It is quite surprising that many new models don't realize you have to file your own taxes. You are labeled as an independent contractor working on your site and not as an employee. When tax season comes you will file a 1099 form. You are responsible for filing, writing deductions, and paying into the government. You should be sure to save at least 10-15% of each check so that you are not blindsided at the end of the year. I highly recommend hiring a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) to help you file your taxes.
Because of the negative stigma surrounding sex work, it can be difficult to move forward with a history of camming. This can impact religion, family, friends, and potential careers. You are lucky if the people in your life accept the choices you have made or if your employers don't seem to mind. For some, camming is their shadow. I hope you will not look back with regret.
It is rare but not unheard of for some models to be questioned or detained when trying to travel internationally. This is because of strict prostitution laws in some places around the world.
I wish this was as rare as the first, but unfortunately, it is not. It is possible for your partner to use your career in sex work as a weapon against you in custody battles with children.
It is also possible for landlords to discriminate against you and this line of work. Many sex workers have been evicted from their homes after being outed to their landlords.
Also, provide all required documentation for the platforms you work on and the partners you perform with. It is important to get signed contracts and agreements between you and your partners. You must agree to who legally owns the content, how much it is to be sold for, where it can be hosted, age verification, and more. If you don't get this documentation, you can be forced to remove the content or even taken to court.