If you’ve been following the “sexting” trend through various news network over the last 12 months it likely seems that just about every teen on the face of the planet is engaging in acts of personal phone pornography but a new study says that simply isn’t the case.
According to the study published on Monday in the journal Pediatrics one in 10 children from the ages of 10 to 17 engage in the sending of sexually explicit images (10%) and only 1 in 100 (1%) send images of themselves and others that would be considered in violation of child pornography laws.
Researchers conducting the study interviewed 1,560 children from across the United States and according to author Janis Wolak:
“It only takes one or two cases to make people think this is very prevalent behavior,” and “This has been reported as if it were something that everyone was doing, not just in the teen population, but in the young adult population. It’s really not the case.”
Janis’ work at the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire makes her an authority on the subject and the perfect person to show proof that the prevalence of sexting among underage pre-teen and teens is not as serious as researchers and news outlets in the past have led us to believe.
The research further reveals that 149 kids admitted to sending or receiving pornographic images in the last 12 months while just over 2 percent said the pictures were taken of their own bodies and 7.1 percent said they had received sexual images from someone else.
What may be most troubling about the trend is that 31 percent of those respondents who said they took sexual images said they did so while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
The study does not say that sexting is not of concern, simple that media reports about the issue have been greatly exaggerated. I have to admit we’ve been guilty of rampant reporting on the issue at Inquisitr as can be witnessed here, here andhere.
Are you surprised to learn that cases of sexting among younger phone users are not as rampant as originally believed?
[Image via ShutterStock.com]