Max Willens reports: There are several million single guys in this country, and many of them will spend Valentine’s Day online with webcam models: sex workers paid to chat — and usually a whole lot more — via the magic of the internet. Although most are women, there are a fair number of male models too. The ratio, by some estimates, is about two to one.
No matter their gender, today is a big day. Valentine’s Day is the big, heart-shaped exception to the rule that holidays are rough on the Internet porn biz. Come February 14, traffic surges, money flies, and models know they can earn thousands of dollars in mere hours.
“It is the big money-generating day,” said Natalie Star, a cam model who spent years with Webcam Modeling Agency but now works by appointment only. “If you think about it, there’s hundreds of thousands of lonely guys, they don’t have wives, they don’t have girlfriends. It’s huge, not only for the customers that know you, but for the girls who are trying to build their audiences.”
“Camming” has been around since the 1990s, but it’s only taken off in the past five years with the ubiquity of high-speed internet and webcams.