Working as a cam girl is lucrative and fun, but it can be dangerous. Cam girls of all shapes, sizes and ethnicities are well aware that exploitative people are everywhere on the web. Unfortunately, though, some of your fellow cam girls are statistically more in danger than others.
Trans women at greater risk
Trans people in general — and more specifically, trans women of color — face a greater risk of becoming a victim in a violent attack in the United States.
Refinery29 reported in April that Florida’s Chayviss “Chay” Reed, who was fatally shot in Miami, was the ninth transgender woman to be murdered in the U.S. this year. Last year, 27 transgender people were reported murdered in the U.S. The majority of them were women of color. The statistic represents an increase over 2015, when 21 transgender women were killed, making 2016 the deadliest year on record for trans people. At the rate reported by Refinery29, 2017 is likely to match or exceed 2016’s record.
Further, a study done by the Human Rights Campaign and Trans People of Color Coalition estimates trans women face 4.3 times the risk of being murdered compared to cisgender women in the U.S. At least 87 percent of trans people murdered between 2013 to 2015 were people of color.
Get the industry involved
The online cam industry must show transgender models it truly supports them, their work and their safety.
“The beauty of Chaturbate’s community is everyone is equal,” Chaturbate COO Shirley Lara explained. “It doesn’t matter if someone is male, female, transgender, straight, gay, even couples — broadcasters that run their cam businesses through our site fit every fantasy, orientation and taste.”
Most cam sites and services in the industry are well aware transgender models need to be valued and loved for who they are and the amazing work they do.
“We want to do our best to connect our trans models with the users who love them, so something special we do is feature our trans models in the service specific to how they identify,” Karly Kroft, fetish community manager at Flirt4Free, explained.
“For instance, our [male-to-female] trans models are featured on the ‘Live Girls’ side of the site,” she continued. “We also invest in special trans traffic with a specific interest geared towards trans models. Additionally, we offer multiple trans-geared categories for models to include themselves in, round-the-clock support for trans models and give them pointers on how to succeed with the Flirt4Free Network.”
Protect each other online
Every cam girl knows self-safety is vital.
Although you work from the comfort of your own home, keeping your real identity under wraps and your personal contact and banking information under lock and key is essential to your safety.
But even though self-safety techniques are important, all cam girls must stay on the lookout for their transgender sisters.
Skim posts for identity-revealing information
If you follow each other on Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, etc., make sure your friends keep their geo-location services off. This is vital for all cam girls, but trans cam girls could be more at risk if they accidentally reveal their personal information. After all, people who perpetrate hate crimes are always motivated to find a target and cause harm. In addition to turning off location services, make sure your friends don’t accidentally post personal information such as what their favorite bar is on work accounts.
Work images and personal images should be different
You make certain all of your performances are done in a secure location — a place in your home without revealing personal information — so make sure your digital footprint and images are “secure,” too.
Google Image searches can lead all of your clients, including the ones who may want to do you harm, to your personal information, OCamgirl points out.
And we’ll end on a total no-brainer…
If you’re performing with a transgender friend, do not reveal their personal information to a client when the other person is not on camera. It’s easy to get caught up in conversations with clients, but safety should always be every cam girl’s first priority.
Image: Sunshyne Monroe.