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An interesting look at how the digital age has transformed the oldest industry in history and how this affects our youth. In this article, we will explore the current extraordinary and unconventional online trends that youths are embarking on to generate income. We will look at this from a perspective that runs alongside the oldest industry in history – prostitution – moreover, Digital Prostitution.

What exactly is Digital Prostitution?

Wikipedia documents that “2400 BCE are the earliest recorded mention of prostitution as an occupation. These describe a temple-brothel operated by Sumerian priests in the city of Uruk. … In later years sacred prostitution and similar classifications for females were known to have existed in Greece, Rome, India, China, and Japan.”.

The Digital age didn’t change this age-old institution, it merely adapted to it. According to Urbandictionary.com, Digital Prostitution is “One who whores themselves online, be it social networks, online games, and/or webblogs, to acquire either cash or accessories.”.

How is our youth involved?

Knowingly or unknowingly, our youth prostitute themselves out on social networks with the likes of LiveJasmin, ChaturBate, and StripChat, to mention but a few. These websites encourage youth to become members and in return, the website gain traffic which in return generate income for the website host. The youth that poses as models get paid by subscribers to perform live sexual acts in the view of the subscribers. Everyday social platforms like Twitter, WeChat, Instagram and others has also become a popular place for advertising yourself or your, for example, your OnlyFans handle. Targetted perverts then access OnlyFans, become a subscriber, and pay for your sexual online content, inevitably making the “model” a digital prostitute.

The Online Porn Industry

The porn industry is said to be worth between $6- to $8 Billion. According to wealthypersons.com, the largest digital porn site, PornHub, has a nett worth of $1.5billion. PornHub has “models” that get paid for live pornographic content. PornHub is the largest of these types of websites. the Financial Times cited in an XBIZ survey that put annual revenue at $5 billion worldwide — including sales and rentals of DVDs, membership-based websites, video-on-demand, live webcams, mobile and pay-per-view movies on cable and satellite. The digital porn industry is said to grow even bigger in years to come and have contributed to the decline in DVD sales worldwide.

The Negative aftermath for the youth.

Getting a job after exposing yourself on online platforms will become challenging and in some instances impossible. Large organizations do security verifications through companies like Lexus Nexus and the chances that you will be caught is high. As an employee, your association with organizations is important in a large business. Society judges an organization by their employees and naturally associate their morals and standards. If your employer has a large social responsibility, it might not want to be associated with an employee who is a know digital prostitute.

Conclusion

In South Africa and around the world, unemployment and easy access to the internet has led to an increase in youth selling themselves online by means of targeting a perverted online audience and then capitalizing on it. With the crumbling morals of society and the woke mindsets, honest labour intensive hard work are becoming a thing of the past for our youth and they would rather prostitute themselves online than to be a labourer or entrepreneur. When their online “shelve life” has reached its expiration date, they will not be able to find employment due to security checks that will expose their online activities. Will this trend ever end? With good old school parenting and better control over our children’s online activities, we might be able to save our immediate loved ones. The challenge is…when they leave the house and become independent, they might revert to the “easy money making” process of digital prostitution when financial times get tough. As a parent, it is best to lay a solid foundation at an early age and set rules in order to protect our children from this digital phenomenon.

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