Net Gains: First-time fakers

On Tuesday, two "typical all-American kids", Mike and Diane, will lose their virginity live on the Internet via an "unobstructed" webcam video.

Well, that was what we were told was going to happen, when the Our First Time site launched three weeks ago. Apparently, the idea belonged to Diane who, like Mike, is a church-going high-school honours student. Diane was inspired while watching a birth at a Florida hospital live on the Net on 16 June. She got talking online to a California web-page designer, Oscar Wells.

"She thought [the birth] was educational, but said that if they showed someone making love it would be considered obscene," says Wells. "She made the off-hand remark, `If I could, I'd lose my virginity online to make the point.' I said, `If you're serious, I can facilitate that'."

In fact, the whole thing was a not very convincing hoax, as was revealed after the first week of media pressure, during which the site crashed offline because the software could not cope with the millions of people trying to visit it.

A new, powered-up Our First Time site then bounced back, with the sponsorship of a condom retailer, Condomania, which insisted that the controversial live video was ditched and that the site come clean. Our First Time has since continued, with a curious day-by-day diary of Mike and Diane in words and snapshots as they prepare for you-know-what. The motive now, according to the sponsor, is to promote safer sex.

What will be presented on the concluding Tuesday remains a mystery, but the quality of the adventures in the past week has not been inspirational. First there was the visit to the Condomania store in Los Angeles (Mike: "This condom store has every possible condom from around the world. Both male and female, as well as every other safe product available. There's also fun stuff like games, postcards, silly food products, and a few other assorted toys." Diane: "I'm telling you now, you can forget the toys. I don't need anything but you." Mike: "I'm yours for ever"). Then there were the Aids tests - why, or is there something Mike is not telling us? Strangest of all was the day they revealed to Diane's parents what they were going to do (Diane: "They told us that they did not think that this statement is one worth making, but if we do, then they will support our right to do it. They just asked one thing: please do it with class - and be very careful. I am so lucky to have parents like these").

In a way, it's a relief the site bears so little relation to reality. (Do you think your first time would make a good video?) But you can guarantee that eventually a bona fide couple will lose their virginity on the Net. We have already had a birth, with the hospital where it took place now planning to screen live surgery.

There is an established business in sites with webcams permanently trained on real people's bedrooms - the most famous, JenniCam, now charges $15 a year to subscribe. Voyeurism is big business, as RPTV (real-people television) endlessly proves. And perhaps someone will be inspired by one of this summer's hit films, The Truman Show, in which Jim Carrey grows up to realise that his entire life has been broadcast as a soap opera using hidden cameras. And you thought Mike and Diane were scary.

Our First Time with Mike and Diane

EarthCam's guide to the best webcam sites

Suggested Topics
i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
Arts and Entertainment
Secrets of JK Rowling's Harry Potter workings have been revealed in a new bibliography
arts + ents
Down-to-earth: Winstone isn't one for considering his 'legacy'
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Sauce Recruitment: Retail Planning Manager - Home Entertainment UK

    salary equal to £40K pro-rata: Sauce Recruitment: Are you available to start a...

    Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - London - up to £40,000

    £35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Creative Front-End Developer - Claph...

    Recruitment Genius: Product Quality Assurance Technologist - Hardline & Electric

    £18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The role in this successful eco...

    Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000

    £28000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: QA Tester - London - £30,000 QA Tes...

    Day In a Page

    HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

    Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

    Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
    How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

    Time to play God

    Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
    MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

    MacGyver returns, but with a difference

    Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
    Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

    Tunnel renaissance

    Why cities are hiding roads underground
    'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

    Boys to men

    The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
    Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

    Crufts 2015

    Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
    10 best projectors

    How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

    Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
    Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

    Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

    Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
    Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

    Monaco: the making of Wenger

    Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
    Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

    Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

    Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

    In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

    This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
    'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

    Homage or plagiarism?

    'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
    Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

    Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

    A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower