Sexting! How many college kids are doing it? If you thought most, you would be right. But rely not on your assumptions, because there are now actual numbers to put with the sex-texts. A 200-person survey from the University of Rhode Island found that 78% of students had gotten “sexually suggestive messages” and 58% have gotten “intimate images.” Two-thirds of students had sent such messages, but most of them — 73% — were sent to a romantic partner. Aw. Except…then things get a little questionable:
Almost a fifth of the people who received the racy messages then forwarded them onto somebody else. And 10% of all the explicit messages sent were relayed without permission from the original author.
Note that this survey was only done with Rhode Island students, but presumably it’s a fairly apt indicator of the general college — and possibly post-college — mentality, which is, sexting is OK; forwarding your ex’s nude photos to the entire campus or posting them on the Internet for public dissemination is not. Be careful with what you put out there, kiddos. A digital trail — especially a naked one — is harder to get rid of than the staunchest of red wine stains.
We recommend due diligence with regard to whomever you might sext. Of course, the only way to be truly safe is abstinence.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 26, 2011