Sexting media: teenagers’ reputation at stake

by Laurent François

ABC News gave great insights about what we call “sexting“:

“If a boy meets a girl or has a girlfriend on summer break he comes back and shows all his boys the [naked] pictures he’s been sent. No one gives it that much thought really,” says Younger.

The dangerous combination of teenagers behaving provocatively and impulsively is not new, but the accessibility to the technology is. With cell phone cameras, they have been handed a tool so easy to use for some it’s impossible to pass up.

Funny? Not really, because the repercussions can be pretty dangerous for the teenagers.

How come ?

Now, when you text someone, your device is connected to the web…So the tremendous thing to do is to tease someone and publish the photos…on any social networks, just to share with your buddies.

Damn.

IRL, we call it sexual maltreatment. In virtual world, which has consequences in real life, it can lead to:

  • offending reputation
  • breach of trust
  • psychological trauma

What used to be just a provocative manner evolved: there will be digital footprints “forever” of these affairs in search engines, ghost accounts etc:

“The survey by Girlfriend magazine found that four in 10 readers had been asked to forward a nude photo of themselves via multimedia phone messaging, known as MMS.”

So what to do?
Probably also teaching kids what is at stake when they use all these new media. And explaining why they need to be extremely careful with their online stories. Because it must belong to them.

Some might call it literacy. Or just responsibility.

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