- Publish Date
- Monday, 8 October 2018, 11:37AM
Students around the world have found a new and easy way to earn cash- and it's paying off their loans with a few simple texts...
Katie Roberts*, a 23-year-old student in the UK says that by 5pm, she will have earnt NZ$300 just from sending a few texts.
"Friends had earned money 'sexting' men they met online," she explains.
"You didn't have to give them any personal details about yourself. You didn't meet them face to face. It seemed like a safe, easy way to make money quickly. I set up an anonymous Instagram account and soon had guys messaging me."
Katie swapped from Instagram to online forums where men offer large sums of money in exchange for a 20-minute text conversation.
Ads can say anything from budget, kinks and gives the girls a chance to assess the person before they decide anything. she explains "Whenever I see anyone post a 'wanted' ad asking for something I'd be fine with, I send them a personal message."
Her clients are mostly American, and prices vary depending on the whether their communication is just verbal, or involves pictures and videos.
Before you ask- yup, she has a boyfriend who is supportive of her 'digital sex work', and deosn't mind that Katie also offers a Girlfriend Experience. Men pay a woman to pretend to be their "girlfriend", by way of exchanging regular texts.
"It's kind of sad," she says, but "one guy in America paid me NZ$380 a week, and it was just occasional texting."
Sugar-babying and webcamming among others, is also becoming more important among students to pay bills; and webcamming can be lucrative too, earning some up to NZ$2000 a week.
Student Natalie currently makes up to NZ$400 in a week from messaging, though adds that many of her friends earn NZ$100 a week "doing not much at all" - sometimes merely corresponding with men about "their jobs and how stressed they are."
She also shares that a couple of her friends sell pictures of their feet to fetishists on Twitter for upwards of NZ$10 each, while the site also houses plenty people who practise "findom", or financial domination - people who pay others to take control of their passwords and online bank accounts, which is, apparently, arousing.
A recent study by Swansea University found that 5 per cent of students had done sex work at some stage, while 20 per cent had seriously considered doing so to pay their bills.
"I've never felt uncomfortable," says Natalie. "It's good for just getting that little bit of extra cash. If anything, it's empowering to earn your own money and use your body in a way you're in control of."
*Names have been changed for privacy.