This continued until an incident occurred wherein she was discovered by a group of hackers on Efnet who teased her for their own amusement.
After she reacted humorously to their taunts, Jenni Cam was hacked, and Ringley received death threats. Initially, the camera tended to be turned off during especially private moments, but eventually this custom was abandoned, and images were captured of Ringley engaging in sex. in 1998, she added webcams to cover the additional living space (four webcams captured images of her life).
Nate Lanxon of CNET said "remember this is 1996 and the Web as we know it now had barely lost its virginity, let alone given birth to the God-child we know as the modern Internet." On April 3, 1996, during her junior year at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, the 19-year-old Ringley installed a webcam in her college dorm room, and provided images from that cam on a webpage.
The webpage would automatically refresh every three minutes with the most recent picture from the camera.
Her first webcam contained only black-and-white images of her in the dorm room.
Jenni Cam attracted up to 4 million views a day at its peak.
Unlike later for-profit webcam services, Sources stated that Jenni Cam received over 100 million visitors weekly.
In May 1997 Ringley graduated from Dickinson with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. She began charging for access to her site, allowing both paid and free access with the paid access updating the images more frequently than the free access.
She added more pages to her website that included pictures of her cats and ferrets.
Previously, live webcams transmitted static shots from cameras aimed through windows or at coffee pots.
Ringley's innovation was simply to allow others to view her daily activities. She did not wish to filter the events that were shown on her camera, so sometimes she was shown nude or engaging in sexual behavior, including sexual intercourse and masturbation.