Normally, I don’t like linking to TechCrunch, but it was the closest thing I could find to a legitimate news outlet that was covering this.
Anyway, on January 31st, 2013 at 11:59 PM Pacific Time the livestreaming video and chat site Stickam stopped broadcasting for good. In the company’s last blog post they warned users that they were closing down but gave no real reason as to why.
For those of you who had no idea what Stickam was it was a live video chat site that allowed users to broadcast and chat with other users. The main problem was that its only age restriction was that you had to be 14 to be on the site and of course they did not check ages. They also used to allow private rooms which more than one predator took advantage of. The most infamous incident from Stickam is when one John Hock sexually assaulted a woman live on cam.
I think their demise started when they did away with private rooms back in 2009. They tried having a paid private room level of service, but they also said that they wouldn’t tolerate anything sexually in the private rooms. For the most part, people only went to Stickam for live porn in my opinion. While there may have been any number of emo attention whores and dope-smoking Juggalos on their channels for the most part Stickam was all about live porn. Without that, I’m sure the majority of their users left in droves. I’m surprised it took 4 years for them to finally close the doors.
This isn’t a reason for celebration, though. In the years since Stickam turned off private rooms a number of smaller webcam sites have started, geared strictly towards porn and some even make money for their users. Some have strict age verification while most do not allow anyone of any age to get on cam and expose themselves for a few bucks.
Again I say that it is the job of the parent to make sure that their kids don’t end up on any sites like these. As I’ve said many times before no underage kid needs a webcam and if they do have one they should never be allowed to use the computer unattended. You wouldn’t open their bedroom windows for predators, so why would you open one that would allow the entire internet into their rooms?