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Camming revenue has been severely cutting into the profits of the pornographic movie business, which has also been eroded for a number of years due to piracy and the distribution of free sexual content upon the Internet.
Additionally, the pornographic film industry used to be male-dominated except for the performers.
The website provides the transactional platform and then collects and distributes a percentage of the tips to the models.
For public chat rooms, the model's portion of a tip is a little less than half.
When webcam models create their live webcasts, they perform the activity known as camming.
A third-party hosting website which transmits multiple webcam models' video-streams is known as a camming site.
Webcam models mostly perform individually in separate video chat rooms, which are frequently referred to as rooms.
In 1996 an American college student and conceptual artist, Jenny Ringley, created a website called "Jenni Cam." Her web camera was located in her dorm room and automatically photographed her every few minutes.
Similar webcam model hosting sites such as Chaturbate, CAM4 and My Free boast 4.1 million, 3.7 million and 2 million unique monthly visitors, respectively.
The decentralized business model of camming has upended the pornography industry in multiple ways.
However this is not the first time that conversational interaction had become a boon for the erotic entertainment industry.
The Mitchell Brothers O'Farrell Theatre strip club is credited with the invention of the lap dance when during 1977 their new stage, New York Live, pioneered customer-contact shows with strippers that came off the stage and sat in the laps of customers for tips.
Some fans communicate multiple times a day with models through social media.