While a lot of work at home jobs are phone-based, the Internet has opened up a new breed of customer service that does not require being on the phone.
In fact, live customer service chat is becoming more and more popular everyday.
In a demonstration for the Associated Press, a Terre de Homme researcher logged in to a chat room and identified himself as a 10-year-old girl from the Philippines. "We want governments to adopt proactive investigation policies that give law enforcement agencies the mandate to actively patrol public Internet hot spots where this child abuse is taking place every day," Guyt said.
Now that fake girl could help authorities identify very real child predators.
"Sweetie" is the creation of Dutch children's rights organization Terre des Hommes.
Sweetie first interacted with the potential predators in public chat rooms.
Researchers made sure to model their alter ego's online conversation, in style and tone, to that of a preteen Filipino girl. But what they don't know: I'm not real." To show them she was, Terre de Homme researchers hunkered in an Amsterdam warehouse, turned on a Webcam, and using software, controlled the CG girl's conversation, facial expressions, and movements (made realistic through the use of motion capture technology).
When Stephanie dropped this sage wisdom back in 2009, smartphones were just beginning their meteoric rise. I refused to let him back into my life until I heard the five words I yearned to hear: "Can we just have sex? After having sex multiple times a week for three months, Jack started hinting that he wanted more from me. Though I liked Jack, I didn't think he was "boyfriend material" (whatever that means). It was during the throes of a breakup with another guy -- someone who left me wanting sexually -- that I decided to text Jack: "Be at your place in 15 minutes." Words were barely uttered before we began ripping off each other's clothes. After a few weeks, Jack asked if I'd send him a sexy picture. Jack didn't have to ask -- I started sending them by the spank bankful.
But it was more than that which drew me to him: He was also intelligent and charmingly socially awkward. Soon, Jack ended our fling, but he quickly regretted it. As I yanked Jack's luscious locks, we copulated from every angle.
Terre de Homme says Webcam sex with minors is a phenomenon that's proliferating fast as access to cheap Internet in developing countries grows.
The practice, it says, generally involves men from wealthy Western countries paying children from poor countries for online sex shows.
Over the course of a 2.5-month sting operation, the group says, Sweetie helped Terre des Hommes identify more than 1,000 adults from 71 countries willing to pay children in developing countries to perform sex acts before a Webcam.
On Monday, it announced that it would hand over video footage of the interactions to international police organization Interpol.
"These children are usually forced to do this by adults or by extreme poverty," Hans Guyt, director of campaigns at Terre des Hommes Netherlands, said in a statement.