Amongst "serious" roleplayers, cybering may occur as part of a larger plot–the characters involved may be lovers or spouses.
In situations like this, the people typing often consider themselves separate entities from the "people" engaging in the sexual acts, much as the author of a novel often does not completely identify with his or her characters.
Due to this difference, such roleplayers typically prefer the term "erotic roleplay" rather than cybersex to describe it.
Alternatively, it can be considered a form of sexual roleplay that allows the participants to experience unusual sexual sensations and carry out sexual experiments they cannot try in reality.
Often these personas develop complex past histories for their characters to make the fantasy/roleplay even more life like, thus the evolution of the term "real cybering".
Cybersex provides various advantages: For many the primary point of cybersex is the plausible simulation of sexual activity, and this knowledge of the other is not always desired, but this is also criticized as the emptying out of embodied relations.
Channels used to initiate cybersex are not necessarily exclusively devoted to that subject, and participants in any Internet chat may suddenly receive a message with any possible variation of the text "Wanna cyber? " or a request for "C2C"/"C4C" ("cam to cam" and "cam for cam", respectively).
Cybersex is commonly performed in Internet chat rooms (such as IRC, talkers or web chats) and on instant messaging systems.