Camming has forever altered the adult industry. Cam models—essentially DIY porn stars who can work from home—often have autonomy over what they do, when they do it, and how. For viewers, it's allowed a personalized touch unparalleled to other formats of porn; they can actually interact with the people they are jerking off to, in real time. But behaviour in models' chatrooms is not intuitive for everyone.
Are "free chats" actually free? Can you ask just any camgirl to do anal? What's with prices for flashing? VICE asked cam models to give us their pro tips for how to treat them on (and off) the camera.
Prices Are Set for a Reason
"Stop complaining about prices. You think 500 tokens is too much for a flash? You think 3,000 tokens is too much for a naked oil cum show? Ask yourself how much it would cost for you to show yourself naked on the internet to thousands of people without your face being blurred out. Is $25 worth a dick flash? What about bending over and spreading? Don't forget to smile for the people illegally recording you to upload to tube sites!" — Minnie Scarlet , cammed for four years (currently not active)
'Free' Doesn't Always Mean It's Free
"It should be addressed that since sites advertise cam sites as "free" due to "free chat," a lot of new users believe that means the model does sexual acts for free. This is a very common misnomer in the cam world as "free chat" just means you're free to hang out, watch, and chat—but all requests are still meant to be paid for. Someone is usually tipping, so the other 'free' aspect is that you can technically watch sexual shows for 'free.' But it does need to be pointed out that someone is and did pay for most of the time you find a model doing something sexual in free chat. Rarely do models just start naked and fapping for nothing. A lot of new users get this wrong and end up mad about it at the models for not doing as requested for free. I hear lots of "But this is a free site!" comments as a result of this, as do most cam models who work free chat sites. This is also a good way to get silenced or possibly banned." — o0Pepper0o , camming for 4.5 years
The Customer Is Not Always Right
"Don't spam people [on social media]… I have people who will literally spam me over and over again: "Hey," "Hey," "Hey," "Why aren't you answering me?" We have other clients to deal with, we have other people to deal with. Some of us have hundreds of thousands of Twitter followers—we don't have time to reply to everybody right away. Secondly, a lot of people have a specific fetish, and then they'll take you into private chat and ask you to do something without asking ahead of time. Say there's a girl who doesn't do anal—a guy will take her into private chat, she'll say, "What are you looking for today?" The guy will be like, "Fuck your ass for me," and she'll say, "I'm sorry, I don't do that." At that point, the guy has already wasted $5-10, she feels uncomfortable, and he probably gives her a bad review." — Dahlia Dee , camming for over five years
"If you meet me, let me know it's you! I've had so many people let me know after the fact that it was them I was talking to. That said, I'm not one to be embarrassed if you call out my screen name, but definitely be aware of the surroundings. Not everybody wants their friends or family to know their online persona. Respect boundaries! When I meet people, especially at conventions when I'm almost completely naked, I get very nervous. I don't know what to expect—I worry that they will get hyped up in the atmosphere or think because of my work, I would enjoy people grabbing or rubbing up on me. Every model has different boundaries, so never assume what's okay. Try to remember that when we're not behind the camera, we're not at work. The same rules don't apply. We're just like any other person." — Vawnie Voulphie , camming for over one year
These interviews have been edited for length and clarity.
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