Recently, I read about a woman in her mid-20s who tried webcam modelling for a few weeks. She researched for months and chose a well-known hosting site to ensure her privacy and online integrity. So imagine her surprise after deciding a few weeks later that webcam modelling wasn’t for her that her private content had already been stolen by an untouchable offshore site that was using it for profit. The original site did nothing to prevent or retract the stolen footage.
I’m aware of the extreme difficulty of actually removing content once it is stolen. However, the blame is often placed on the models while thieves and unscrupulous website managers make money from the content without the slightest consequence.
Women who vulnerably share personal content for a specific time and a specific audience do everything they can to keep their explicit content only for private, paid viewers, which means their content is not popping up for kids googling for their anatomy project. Piracy of that media to pass it on publically and make money from it is walking all over those women. We need enforced online laws to protect webcam models and others who want their personal content removed from the Internet.
I work with the You’re Beyond project and one way that the team assists webcam models and people working with them is to help minimize the content being stolen. Through those contacts, I see webcam models protecting their content by using this DCMA badge. They also direct their audience to their snapchat account and are able to monitor their content better there.
However, much more needs to be done. Does an online list of copyright lawyers familiar with webcam modeling piracy exist? How can accountability measures for larger websites be increased so that hosting streaming content includes the responsibility of preventing and tracking down piracy?
And, if you have been a victim of content piracy or shaming please speak up. If the team @yourebeyond on twitter can be of any assistance please contact them.