Excerpt: 20% of young adults post naked pics online

Need to read this article at:

Oh the humanity: 20% of young adults post naked pics online

Surely that’s a typo, I thought, when I first saw this story. A misplaced decimal point. A bad guess. Something, anything to restore faith in humanity. Alas, it appears that’s not the case and the numbers are true: According to a study of over 1,000 teens and young adults from 13 to 26, one in five said they posted nude pictures or videos of themselves online, or emailed them to someone else. A full 15 percent of those said they had sent the pictures to someone they’d never met in the offline world.

The study comes to us from National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy and CosmoGirl.com (yeah, yeah, I know… it still feels legitimate). It doesn’t break down the portion of photos/videos sent by teenagers vs. twentysomethings (which is less awful), but either way the numbers feel  disconcerting.

This isn’t a case where these kids didn’t know what they were doing. The vast majority of those polled knew perfectly well of the potentially “serious negative consequences” of having risque personal material online, but went ahead and did it anyway.

The upshot: It’s probably time for parents to add yet another “sit down and talk” discussion to their repertoire, this one about how damaging it can be to create this kind of material and especially to share it online, even with a boyfriend or girlfriend they’re absolutely sure they are going to be with forever and ever and ever. The key talking point for parents: Once this stuff is on the Internet, it’s there for good, and if it’s associated with your name, it’ll come up every time anyone searches for you on the web. Rest assured, photos of any scantily clad coed are absolutely certain to outlast even the bestest of BFFs.


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