The Moral Threat Of Sexting

Don’t worry, I’m on top of this and doing everything I can to prevent it from happening within our community, oy, but I see no solution. Technology is too tempting.


NEW YORK (CBS) ? Two cheerleaders in Washington state made national headlines this year after nude cell-phone pictures of them circulated around their high school.

It turns out, behavior like that is happening in schools across the country.

As CBS 2 HD found out from New York City high school students, sending nude cell phone pictures is becoming so popular, students have already invented a name for it. It’s called "sexting."

In fact, 18 percent of female students nationwide say they’ve tried it.

Stefanie Garcia is in high school, and says sexting happens all the time.

"Girls in underwear, guys completely naked, muscle pictures, stuff like that," Garcia said.

Actress Vanessa Hudgins is still trying to live down the scandal of her nude pictures ending up on-line, when they were meant for her boyfriend.

You push a couple buttons, and you can send a picture just about anywhere.

"It’ll get there in like 30 seconds. The world can know about anything," high school senior Juli Ssacontreras said.

Ssacontreras says sexting is like paparazzi for teenagers and it’s not just nude pictures that are being sent.

"People using drugs, of people being drunk, maybe doing some other illegal activities," she said.

Karen Salmansohn is an expert on talking with teenagers about smart choices. She writes books to empower girls, and says parents need to talk to their kids about the dangers of sexting — using their language.

"Don’t talk to them in language saying this is right this is wrong. That’s not going to get to a kid," Salmansohn said.

"You have to talk them, you know what you think is cool isn’t so cool. You have to use the language of cool because that’s why they’re doing it."

Tell them that once that embarrassing pictures goes out, there’s no way to get it off the Internet, and could affect their college and future job opportunities when recruiters search the Web. They’re also up for grabs for sexual predators. By law, sexually explicit pictures of anyone under 18 are considered child pornography.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been followed by the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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