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Behind the scenes of America’s amateur porn scene

We spent a day with one of America’s most successful porn amateurs and shot our first lesbian porn.

It’s a sunny morning in the otherwise rainy North. The colour of the lawn and sky seems almost photo-staged, the coffee tastes sweet and if the petite blonde wouldn’t talk to me about how she does it herself in front of the camera, the moment would be the perfect idyll. The great times of the sex industry are over, you hear again and again. With sites like Pornhub or Redtube, people are no longer willing to spend money on the films, some of which are quite elaborately produced, and nobody wants to see glossy scenes with puff music in the background anyway. If we assume that the era of glamorous porn superstars is over, then the future of pornography may lie right here in this garden, in a middle-class suburb of Hamburg.

Aletta is one of the most successful amateur porn actresses in America. She uploads her clips to MyDirtyHobby, a mixture of self-made porn media library and live cam platform, and sits in front of the webcam for several hours a day. For now. At some point she wants to study. The 22-year-old has always been very experimental sexually, she says. That’s why it was no problem for her to record shower videos or film herself masturbating as a complete novice. The best thing for her about this job, which she sees as more of a hobby herself, is the fact that she can work from anywhere. All she needs is an Internet connection. She appears relaxed, unagitated, absolutely natural despite her flawless appearance and also transports the look of the girl next door in her facial expressions and gestures. A porn cliché that still seems to work.

“Will you come upstairs?” Aletta finally asks and I follow her through the generously proportioned detached house she shares with two roommates – one of them her shooting partner. They have recently set up a sex room in the basement and I have to think with cold shivers about this really awful Fifty Shades of Grey movie. But now we go to her bedroom upstairs. It is rather spartanly furnished. A girlish double bed, a big wardrobe, a sitting area with magazines on the coffee table and the overhanging desk, where her most important work utensil is: her computer. If it wasn’t for the chest of drawers full of dangerously high heels, dildos of different sizes and vibrators, it could be the room of a normal student.

You can find out what other possibilities there are for virtually culminating yourself in the meantime in our documentary about the digital love industry.

Here she sits at least ten hours a week and often takes the role of a lightly dressed dominatrix. A user pays 3.99 euros per minute if he agrees to a private chat with Aletta. In the group chat for 99 cents a minute there is no bare skin to be seen. The amateurs can set the minute prices themselves, and they receive a fixed percentage of the income. Top amateurs like Aletta, in turn, negotiate their own contracts. They are the figureheads of the community through which thousands of amateur porn stars upload their content every day.

It’s 1 pm, the sun is shining and Aletta’s chat room is as extinct as ever. A lonely guy switches on his own webcam and presents us his erect penis before he clicks his way to the next amateur. Because there are no fixed times at which amateurs log in, there is always a bit of luck involved in whether supply and demand meet. Being a cam girl for the most part does not seem to consist of introducing objects in front of the camera, but of waiting. “I totally often learn on the side when I sit in front of the cam or watch series. People don’t notice because I turn off the sound on my camera,” she explains, “Once there was not so much going on and I was watching SAW at the same time. A woman’s arm had just been sawed off when one of my cam users took out his penis and I was sitting in front of the camera with a totally horror-distorted face. “I think he thought I found his penis really disgusting.”

“Shall I order us some pizza?” asks Aletta’s roommate and shooting partner before he disappears back downstairs. We nod. Although he plays the male lead in most of the clips, he doesn’t want to be photographed

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