Internet has changed everything around us, including sex and sexual behaviour. By adding the prefix cyber to it, Internet has given a new connotation and meaning to the activity.
Having largely blossomed in Internet chat rooms, the word cyber sex today evokes a strong dislike in some, fantasy in others, and is a nuisance to many others. Some call it fun, others term it cheating, but the fact of the matter is it still remains among the top online activities for surfers.
A form of role-playing, cyber sex or Internet sex connects two or more people remotely via a PC network.
Here people engage in virtual sex by sending sexually explicit messages and sharing their sexual experiences online. It is a pretentious act to boost up one's sexual feelings
Earlier restricted only to Internet chat rooms, now people prefer using webcams, voice chat features of Gmail, Skype etc. Even online games and virtual worlds like Second Life are platforms to explore sexual desires.
Many researchers believe that text-based cyber sex gives little scope to boost up the sexual fantasies. However, the advent of technologies like webcams has changed this. They point out that oncam experience give people visual delight to pep up their sexual act.
Also, there are a many commercial webcam websites that let people perform the act on camera while others can watch
Yeah, at least physically if not emotionally, researchers claim. As the act has no physical bonding so there is no risk that the players can get infected with sexually transmitted diseases.
Many believe that for young people the act is physically safe to experiment with sexual thoughts and emotions. Also, it is seen as a good option for those suffering with sexual ailments.
It may be safe in terms that one is not at risks of HIV or other such sexually transmitted diseases. But their are other risks associated. The mere anonymity of Internet as a medium has lead to the rise of many online sex addicts who try to dodge there identity and lure people in such acts.
US has seen many such incidents where sexual predators indulge in child pornography and later arrange meetings. In India too several social networking platforms are being exploited to spread pornography content.
A recent research shows that those who seek out cyber sex have `alarmingly high' rate of depression. The survey also pointed out to the high rate of poor mental health among such people.
Study found that these cyber sex addicts devote hours a day to the clandestine sexcapades. Such addicts, on an average, spend more than 12 hours a week chatting, participating in cyber sex with webcams, downloading video and images, or sending erotic emails.
Marcus Squirrell, a doctoral student at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, conducted the research. According to him, 30 per cent of the group sampled had high levels of anxiety and 35 per cent were moderately to severely stressed.
The rate of depression and anxiety was proportional to the frequency and intensity of online sexual activity, he said, though they visit such sites to 'lift their moods'.
Many see cyber sex as a form of infidelity, however, others debate that as there is no physical bonding it cannot be regarded as a betrayal.
A new study in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy explored how men and women perceive online and offline sexual and emotional infidelity. Results show that men felt sexual infidelity was more upsetting and women felt emotional infidelity was more upsetting.
"Given the newness of the Internet, the rules have still not been clearly defined as to what are acceptable online encounters," the authors note. "Our results support a social-cognitive model as they demonstrate that social shifts have led men and women to think differently about sex and love."
Additionally, "Men were more likely to believe that women have sex when in love and that women believe that men have sex even when they are not in love. It was not, however found that either men or women believe that having cyber sex implied the other was also in love or that being in love online implied they were having cyber sex."
Cyber sex is not just for the young with older adults using Internet technology to liberate their libidos, according to an Australian researcher.
Cyber sex is not just for the young with older adults using Internet technology to liberate their libidos, according to an Australian researcher. She says her findings suggest online relationships between older people become sexually intimate faster and are of shorter duration.
Ms Malta says many of the older women said the cyber romances suited their lifestyles because they “never wanted to live with anyone again.”