WebCam girls are the evolution of a certain branch of the sex industry that has been around for quite some time. That, of course is the strip club. Where women once had to drive to a club, risking exposure to friends and family who they likely wanted to keep their life a secret from, now they could do essentially the same kind of thing working from the privacy of their own homes or dorms, and keeping a bigger piece of the pie for themselves.
At least, that was the dream anyway. The reality about working as a webcam girl shows the ugly nature of the sex industry and the rampant exploitation of female workers just the same as any other leg of it. Often facing rough work conditions for what actually amounts to a tiny piece of the pie, a lot of girls become frustrated and give up. Some even find themselves trapped living with a “boss” that they can’t escape from, much like young aspiring members in the adult industry who live with their managers in a group home.
The reality is far from glamorous for many. While some manage to turn it into a dream job, many don’t. Let’s take a look at what working as a webcam girl is really like. Here are ten facts about the job that you might find surprising.
10. Their Income Varies Greatly
The income of a webcam girl can vary greatly. Of course, some of that is within their own control. If they don’t work many hours, they don’t get a lot of money. It’s just that simple. Of course, it also depends on how flushed the client base is and how they react to individual webcam girls. If a majority of them paying people in a particular session don’t really care for a particular girl’s performance or appearance, they aren’t going to pay for their private shows. Then, that webcam girl doesn’t make a lot of money for that particular session.
9. They Are Still Judged By Their Close Friends And Relatives
When webcam girls are outed by one of their friends or family members who happen to find out what it is they’re really doing to make money, they are incredibly judged. It’s not too surprising either, seeing as how there is an extremely negative opinion of women in that type of business throughout America. With the negative stereotypes of workers in the adult industry, it’s a difficult business for women to be in. Those who are outed often face massive amounts of discrimination. One webcam girl claims to have no friends anymore in the real world, having been shunned completely after revealing to her friends what it is she does.
8. A Lot Of Them Have Management Studios, And They Aren’t Glamorous
A lot of the girls work freelance, but the ones who are successful often work for what’s called a “studio.” The term studio is a little misleading, since it’s often just one person, usually a man, who works to manage girls and schedules and aid in their promotion on the internet. Sometimes the girls live with their studio managers, who ensure that they do their job. The studios are often reported by many girls to be terrible living conditions, offering little to no privacy and having to deal with blatant sexual harassment from many owners. In some cases, Russian and Romanian studios are owned by the mafia and used for the purposes of money laundering, as told by one cam girl named Mila.
7. Harassment Goes With The Territory
In most jobs, any type of harassment, physical or sexual, would hardly be considered tolerable. With webcam work, however, it just goes with the territory. It’s easy to look at these women and say that they are asking for sexual harassment by displaying themselves on the Internet like they do, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Often, the clients will of course harass them, but most of them don’t even complain about that. The physical and sexual abuse by the employers is what gets a lot of them angry. One girl named SassyLisa quoted: “Working in a studio as a webcam model its like keeping a wild beast into a cage…You have to work a number of hours, you don’t have legal working papers…sexual harassment (yes…it sucks when your boss is calling you in the middle of the night asking you to have a quickie, otherwise you’ll take the consequences!”).
6. They Take Home A Small Percentage Of Their Actual Earnings
There are several stories online about how some girls pull in 6 figure salaries working from home as a webcam girl a few nights a week, but those stories are very much the exception. In fact, even those who do make a livable wage are often only collecting a small share of their earnings. Webcam girls usually have to pay a fee to the site that is hosting them, which can range hugely from numbers like 20% to 60%. Then, if you have a studio, they get their cut as well, which is usually around 10%. The rest is handled through some processing site like PayPal, which also takes a cut. All of this siphoning means that the girls themselves are actually seeing very little money.
5. Many Of Them Are Well-Educated
A lot of webcam girls are actually well-educated. Many of the girls doing this sort of thing are extremely young college age girls doing this to help pay down their student loans. In much the same way as we’ve seen extremely bright girls turning to stripping in clubs to put themselves through college, working as a webcam girl has proven to be a way to do that from the comfort of their home or dorm. Sex sells, and the amount of money per hour worked they can make usually dwarfs that of any conventional part-time job even with the small cut they take home. Plus, working from home is a huge benefit to these girls who don’t lose time and money commuting. They also have a much higher chance to keep their job a secret from loved ones.
4. There Is A Skill To What They Do
Anyone who wants to make money as a webcam girl has to do a lot more than show some skin on camera. The true ability to make money comes from the ability to extort as much money as possible from their clients. Only a very small percentage of people who watch these shows are willing to pay to take it to the next level. One of the key ways to make money is to identify and engage those individuals, making sure they want to spend their money on you. Once spending, you want to extract as much as possible out of them, meaning you have to employ various techniques.
3. A Large Number Of Them Aren’t Successful
A large number of webcam girls can’t make a living doing it. For some, that’s okay. They just needed money on the side or to make a little extra money in college, and they probably achieved that. But for those who wish to pursue it as a career, some sadly fall short. In some cases it’s their looks, but in most cases it’s that they just don’t have a personality type that matches the work. As we mentioned, it’s a pretty skill-intensive job to extract money from a certain clientele. Some have their dreams of an easy life camming epically dashed.
2. Some Could Actually Make More Money The “Conventional” Way
Some girls who used to be strippers and moved over to the Internet-based medium found that, much to their surprise, being their own bosses generated far less money than they made working nights at the clubs. With the large cuts taken out of their earnings that we mentioned earlier in the article, it’s perhaps not much of a surprise, but many women see it as a way out of stripping to actually make more money from home, and they couldn’t be more wrong about that. Not to mention, a lot of girls find that they lack the self-motivation to push themselves to work on a regular schedule to keep the money flowing, a problem faced by many freelancers and entrepreneurs.
1. It’s Not An Easy Job
Perhaps this here is what we’ve been building up to with all of these different points. Being a webcam girl ain’t easy. Not only do many of them deal with crappy studio managers and customers who abuse them physically and emotionally, but they don’t even make a lot of money doing it in a lot of cases. The huge cuts taken by the sites, the managers, and the payment services constitute huge losses. That’s not even accounting for taxes, which of course still have to be filed and paid. That means keeping good accounting records. Perhaps the hardest part of all though, is the self-motivation. When you don’t have a set schedule or boss, which non studio girls often don’t have, it can be very hard to motivate yourself to turn off Netflix and work.