Cam girls

Mark Frauenfelder (another member of the Boing Boing tribe) has written a fascinating piece on cam girls in Yahoo Internet Life. What’s a cam girl? She’s a new member of the net generation: a teenage girl who wants you to buy her goodies from her Amazon Wish List just ‘cuz she’s so darned cute. As Frauenfelder writes, “Now meet Natalie. Or better yet, don’t meet her, just buy her an RCA CC9370 AutoShot compact digital camcorder ($450). If you do, this 14-year-old girl from a small Kentucky town ‘will love you forever.'” But since nothing in this world comes for free, cam girls may be willing to exchange pictures of themselves in order to shake the giving tree a little. Mom and dad might not approve. Frauenfelder continues, “To them, their situation seems ideal: They get convenient, digitally delivered affirmations of their desirability without the strings of a real relationship. Modern technology allows these girls to make their virtual presence available to anyone while remaining physically inaccessible.”

It reminds me of the story about George Bernard Shaw that has him dining next to a famous actress one evening. He proposes that she join him for the evening in return for a gift of ten thousand pounds. She enthusiastically agrees, but when he suggests dropping the price to five pounds, she is incensed: “What do you take me for?” To which Shaw coolly replies, “We have already established that. Now we are dickering about the price.” These girls may not know what they’re about just yet, but they’re on their way to find out. Indeed, some of them have gone all the way over to the dark side, listing with a site called, simply, Cam Whores (we warn our delicate readers not to follow this link). Their parents might not be proud, but George Bernard Shaw would be.

Which reminds me: buy me something. If you do, I swear I won’t send you any pictures of me. Of course, if you refuse, I can’t make the same promise…