Nevertheless, phone sex should not be confused with prostitution wherein money is exchanged for real life sexual services or physical interaction.
The editor of High Society magazine, Gloria Leonard, is credited with being one of the first people to use "976 numbers", then "900 numbers" for promotional purposes and soon as a revenue stream in the adult industry.
Cybersex, also called computer sex, Internet sex, netsex and, colloquially, cyber or cybering, is a virtual sex encounter in which two or more people connected remotely via computer network send each other sexually explicit messages describing a sexual experience.
In one form, this fantasy sex is accomplished by the participants describing their actions and responding to their chat partners in a mostly written form designed to stimulate their own sexual feelings and fantasies.
The sexually explicit conversation takes place between two or more persons via telephone, especially when at least one of the participants masturbates or engages in sexual fantasy.
Phone sex conversation may take many forms, including: guided fantasy, sexual sounds, narrated and enacted suggestions; sexual anecdotes and confessions; candid expression of sexual fantasies, feelings, or love, and/or discussion of very personal and sensitive sexual topics.
Leonard convinced magazine owner Carl Ruderman to purchase more of these numbers and the business began to be successful using the magazine to promote the service.
Leonard herself was surprised at the success of these numbers.
It is also fairly frequent in online role-playing games, such as MUDs and MMORPGs, though approval of this activity varies greatly from game to game.
While it does not involve physical contact, critics claim that the powerful emotions involved can cause marital stress, especially when cybersex culminates in an Internet romance.
In several known cases, Internet adultery became the grounds for which a couple divorced.
Phone sex is a conversation between two or more people on the phone where one or more of the individuals is describing the act of sex.
Phone sex takes imagination on both parties' part; virtual sex is difficult if the operator does not put the images in the head of the caller and the caller must be open to the pleasure as well.
Once means of transmitting payment were developed, phone sex turned into primarily a commercial activity, with customers (overwhelmingly male) and sellers (overwhelmingly female).