National Campaign Alerts Parents to Harmful Trend
A survey by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy has found that one in five teens and one in three young adults aged 20 to 26 have sent nude or semi-nude pictures of themselves via phone or posted them online. The practice is known as “sexting.” Campaign spokesman Bill Albert says he believes those numbers are low because they were self-reported. A separate survey by WiredSafety.org, an Internet educational nonprofit, reported that 44 percent of teen boys said they have seen at least one naked picture of a female classmate.
“A lot of the kids feel anonymous online, so they feel more comfortable doing inappropriate things because they think they won’t be linked back to them,” observes one 11th-grader who has advocated cyber-safety since the eighth grade.
The campaign’s survey also found that the majority—66 percent of girls and 60 percent of boys—say they thought of sexting as “fun” or “flirtatious.” Yet, 70 percent recognized it could have serious, long-term consequences for their careers or social standing. Albert notes that despite a rising number of pornography court cases stemming from the phenomenon, “Legal consequences were low on their list of concerns.”
Source: The Christian Science Monitor