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Jennicam was a website created in 1996 by 19-year-old college student Jennifer Kaye Ringley. Started as a “programming challenge” for the computer-savvy Ringley, she installed a webcam in her dorm room at Dickinson College and designed a webpage she called Jennicam.org, where the black-and-white images from the camera, refreshed every 3 minutes, were uploaded. Anyone with Internet access could observe the mostly mundane goings-on of the young woman’s daily life. Until Jennicam.org, live webcams had only transmitted still photos of mostly outdoor scenes. After her friends found out about the site, word spread quickly and the webpage became increasingly popular and developed a cult following. At first, Ringley turned off the camera at certain times, but eventually she did not censor the broadcast and ...

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