Do you know anyone who has come to school naked? Probably not, but maybe you do know people at your school who have been seen naked because they’ve sexted—shared nude photos or videos of themselves via text or online. Many teens believe that the only person viewing the message is the person they send it to, however, with the click of a button, the sext can easily be shared with many others. Although it may seem harmless, there can be negative consequences for sexting. Who would want a college admissions officer or potential employer to make a decision about you after seeing your nude photo or video online? And even worse, who wants to have a criminal record for the possession or distribution of child porn just because you have a nude pic of your partner on your phone? (This has actually happened in several states.)
Once a sext is sent, there’s no way to take it back, and it is no longer private. Each year teens are fully exposed to their friends, classmates and lots of other people because of sexting. Think before sexting. More than a quarter of 14-to 24-year-olds have received naked photos or videos via text or online, according to an Associated Press-MTV poll. Is sexting really worth risking, not only being completely revealed, but a criminal record? Ponder this public service announcement and let us know what you think.
—Chelsea Sirico, 17, Staff Writer
Give Sexting a Ponder
December 7, 2009