By now, the fact that you can find anything online is about the oldest news since sliced bread. Even knowing that better than most, I have to admit I was still blown away to discover that there are actually people willing to pay to watch another human eat. But here we are, all 600 pounds of Donna Simpson as living proof.
The cam girls phenomenon has been documented thoroughly in the past year, but the typical cam girls narrative usually revolves around relatively average women around the world stripping online. All the big cam sites have women (and men) grouped into genres like porn is: people into BDSM, various ethnicities, even hair color.
But Simpson wasn’t a cam girl in the sense we think of now. Instead, she met men through BBW chat rooms, men who paid her to eat on camera, and ultimately who paid her to get even bigger.
This episod of VICE’s “My Life Online” is darkly fascinating. Simpson was introduced to web modeling by a married man that she met online, who ended up fathering one of her children. Meanwhile, her career as a BBW web model for people with eating fetishes was booming. It eventually ended up with her mostly immobile from being so obese and living in the woods with her children. At that point, Simpson made the choice to lose weight.
She’s since given up her Internet persona, and is trying to make a new life for her and her kids. Without the income from modeling, she’s struggling to find a way to pay the bills, but she’s on the road to change. She’s cleaned up her online profile, which has led to possibly the most interesting part of the story: All those people that once paid her to gain weight have totally ignored her since she’s tried to lose it. The Internet, as usual, remains a fickle beast.
Follow Derek Mead on "Twitter: @derektmead.