What’s it all about?
Some people use a webcam or video-calling to chat with friends so that you can see each other as you talk.
This is great for British Sign Language (BSL) users as you can see each other signing and sign back. It’s also a way to chat with people you meet online to get to know each other.
Sounds great, so what’s the problem?
Some people like to use webcams for more intimate chatting, or ‘cam sex’.
It’s easy to get carried away when chatting on a webcam as it feels so private. You might be asked to go naked on webcam, touch yourself or do other sexual things.
Webcams can also be recorded and shared, just like a video can.
Then the person you’ve been chatting with might say they will show the webcam recording to your friends or parents unless you do something for them, like make more sexual videos.
“My partner tries to make me take my clothes off whenever we chat on webcam, should I give in and do it?”
No, not if you don’t want to. Never give in and do anything you don’t feel happy with.
Just as with sexting, if your partner loves and respects you, they will understand and not keep asking you to do it once you’ve said no.
Trying to push someone to do sexual things online counts as online bullying. If you feel you are being bullied online, visit our bullying pages.
Before you ‘cam’…
- Think before you cam. Do you trust the person you’re talking to not to share the webcam footage both now and in the future?
- Are you sure they are the only person who can see you? Remember that webcam footage can be recorded and shared.
- Are you really sure you want to cam? Don’t feel pressured into doing it by anyone, even if you feel like everyone’s doing it or someone tells you it’s no big deal. Your body is yours, and only you decide who to share it with.
What do I do?
If you’re worried that:
- someone has shared explicit photos of you
- someone is saying they will share explicit photos of you
- you’ve been sent a rude picture or sexual message
- an adult or other young person has been asking for things that make you feel uncomfortable, like asking you to send them pictures of yourself
Remember it’s never too late to tell someone and get help.
Need some more help?
Would you like more help, or do you want to ask a question? You can email us (firstname.lastname@example.org).