An intimate social activity using an IRC-style connection and words typed back and forth to create a sexually stimulating situation. Cybersex happens across every type of chat client excluding teleconferencing (considered to be phonesex). Occasionally, erotic e-mail is also considered a form of cybersex.
It is generally agreed by most sex therapists that the brain is the world's greatest aphrodesiac so cybersex must function on a mentally and emotionally satisfying way to be stimulating. It is almost always used in conjunction with masturbation.
Socially, cybersex has many of the same components of real sex, changing the relationship of individuals on the Internet after virtually consumating. It is sometimes used similar to phonesex for couples who are separated by distance seeking intimacy. It can also help individuals explore their fantasies and sexuality anonymously as well as achieve orgasm. Cybersex has the very strong benefit of being a form of safe-sex both against disease or an otherwise harmful partner.
Another division of cybersex is that of roleplaying, using predefined roles often prescribed to real relationships looking for newness. In cyberspace, these roles can be drastically different than real life where appearance and location are not variable.
Negatively, cybersex has the potential of becoming dangerous to one's meatspace lifestyle. Frequently, cybersex is practised very casually, often with complete strangers, but the careless may find that their cybersex partner considers it to be the beginning of a more serious, real-life relationship. Further, many partners consider online sex to be cheating just as much as any other type of unplatonic intimacy.
Cybersex can be an anti-social activity and is often stereotyped for nerds and the socially incapable. Also, the only media attention for chat-room sex often goes to pedophiles in chat rooms trying to prey on children.
This has created an poor stigma of unhealthy behavior amongst some parts of society.