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YouSpeak: The Sexting Phenomenon

Is it a bad idea?

27

The word “sexting,” which describes the act of sending sexually explicit photos or messages by cell phone or other device, first appeared in a London newspaper in 2005. No one knows how many relationships the practice has helped—or destroyed—but a 2008 survey conducted by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy found that 20 percent of teenagers (ages 13 to 20) and 33 percent of young adults (ages 20 to 26) reported having sent nude or seminude photos of themselves. And 39 percent of teens and 59 percent of young adults said they’d sent sexually explicit text messages. That means there are more young adults out there who have sexted than young adults who haven’t. How smart, or dumb, is that?

This week’s “YouSpeak” asks, “Is sexting a bad idea?”

YouSpeak” typically appears each Monday.

If you have a suggestion for a question we should ask, post it in the comments section below.

Kara Siebein (COM’12) assisted with this video.

27 Comments
Nicolae Ciorogan

Nicolae Ciorogan can be reached at ciorogan@bu.edu.

27 Comments on YouSpeak: The Sexting Phenomenon

  • Tarif Ahmedr on 10.11.2011 at 8:54 am

    You guys know there was a mass protest and Occupation, and mass arrests that went down yesterday right?

    And then you put up a video on sexting?

    #partoftheproblem

    • Andres on 10.11.2011 at 10:49 am

      So true, I wish BU Today would address real-world issues. How isn’t Occupy Wall Street on YouSpeak? Or are BU students so unaware of what is happening around them.

      • Chris on 10.11.2011 at 11:15 am

        Because Occupy Wall Street isn’t a real world issue- it’s a bunch of uninformed rabble-rousers who have no stated goals or organization at all.

        Besides that, I agree: overall, BU Today has some pretty lame subjects.

        • Jenny on 10.11.2011 at 11:46 am

          Whether you agree with the movement or not, arrests and protests are way more of a real world issue than sexting.

        • Tarif on 10.11.2011 at 11:50 am

          Before you espouse YOUR uninformed opinion, you may want to make sure you actually know what you are talking about.

          If you really think the Occupy movement is not a real world issue, then like I said, you are #partoftheproblem.

          Educate yourself, http://bucultureshock.com/?p=13296

          • NotFooledByTheMedia on 10.12.2011 at 2:14 pm

            excuse me, I thought occupations were bad. At least that’s what pop culture and leftist media told me to think ;)

        • @Chris on 10.11.2011 at 12:40 pm

          Yep, you’re part of the problem.

          First they ignore you. Then they mock you. Then they fight you. Then you win. OWS is the silent majority unsilenced.

        • Chris on 10.11.2011 at 6:12 pm

          Calling yourselves the “99%” of America when you’re really an incredibly small, nondiverse (99% white) group of people with nothing better to do than to uphold nebulous, fringe views about what changes need to be made in America is fundamentally naive. Nobody with any real authority is taking OWS seriously. It’s completely unsurprising that the media has given them as much attention as they’ve received, because the media is pretty good at reporting on BS (case in point: stories about sexting).

          Let’s face it: the vast majority of the “activists” (they don’t deserve the term) out there (dare I say…about 99% of them) are young, white, middle-classers who are throwing temper tantrums when they don’t know any better. They do not represent me, or any appreciable number of Americans.

          IF you want to make real change, stop glaring at the top 1% and open your arms to the bottom 40% (who hold a mere 0.3% of American wealth) instead.

          And If you want to be actually informed, read something with actual data behind it:

          http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth.html

          • meh. on 10.13.2011 at 10:44 pm

            “IF you want to make real change, stop glaring at the top 1% and open your arms to the bottom 40% (who hold a mere 0.3% of American wealth) instead.”
            I’m a supporter of the Occupy Movement but I actually kind of agree with you here.

            I’m from a poor-ish, rust-belty, industrial-decay area so I got kind of uncomfortable when my upper-middle class friends from prosperous parts of the US called themselves an oppressed majority. yes, I understand that Tarif’s point- he wants to speak for everyone in the 99%, and that’s fine/appreciated. And I’m not saying that Chris’s use of the term “temper tantrum” is quite appropriate, either. But my boarding-school graduate friend from Connecticut complaining about how she’s probably not going to get a job when she graduates is irksome, when I have friends who got into the schools of their dreams and had to go to decline because her parents could not afford school, who didn’t have the money to heat their houses in the winter, and who suffer from food insecurity.

            I’m all for Wall Street accountability. I’m all for action. I went to the protests. I know people who were arrested. but there are a lot of things we could be fighting for NOW to change the lot of the lower 40%. I would like to see the tireless enthusiasm people have right now for protesting channeled into improving our schools, into investigating the shitty state of lower-income housing, into registering voters, into improving the stock of food pantries around the country that have undergone seriously disturbing funding cuts.

            also, lol@sexting, BUToday.

    • Tom on 10.11.2011 at 11:07 am

      The Occupy Movements might want to ask my permission before claiming that they speak for me.

      • Tarif on 10.11.2011 at 11:52 am

        We aren’t speaking for you. We are fighting for you, as you are part of the 99%. We understand many are fearful and unmotivated to change the world around them, so we will do it on your behalf.

        • zach on 10.11.2011 at 1:39 pm

          YOU GO TO BU YOU ARE NOT PART OF THE SUFFERING 99%!!! YOU ARE A RICH WHITE PERSON AT A PRESTIGIOUS UNIVERSITY! f-ing hipster BS

          • Tarif on 10.11.2011 at 2:11 pm

            Ignorance must be contagious Mr. Zach.

            You can try and taint what’s going on by labeling it hipster, or whatever you want, but the fact remains that this movement is happening.

            Even relatively wealthy people who make 6 figures per year are part of the 99%. We are all affected by the corporate influence in our government.

            The forces we are fighting are the same people who got bailed out with a 700 billion dollar bailout plan. They are the same people who can afford to pay lobbyists to skew our legislature into creating laws that don’t reflect the majority.

            And I think you are incredibly stupid. Just because I attend a University doesn’t take legitimacy away from what I fight for. I attend University because it gives me a voice. I have my own financial concerns to take care of, but I also understand that there are plenty of poorer people who can’t afford to waste time by protesting. I fight for them as well as myself. Just because the degree to which we are economically affected is different does not mean we aren’t affected. Why my family pay more taxes than someone earning more than 20x the amount my parents make?

            Also, if you think this doesn’t effect you, you are sorely mistaken. This type of corporate greed is the reason we have a shitty economy right now; it’s the reason you’ll have a hard time finding a job after you graduate.

            But have fun quarterbacking from your keyboard.

          • Someone's Going to Call me Ignorant on 10.11.2011 at 3:53 pm

            Honestly, the “demands” are unrealistic.

            There is no direct agenda…and that is the biggest problem with this “movement”. It started as a disorganized mess and it will continue to be that because the original protest attracted a lot of people who don’t understand what they’re protesting. They’re protesting what they’re angry about, which amounts to a distorted, diluted, angry mob.

            Angry mobs usually end up causing more harm than good.

        • Katie on 11.06.2011 at 9:28 pm

          I remembered reading this thread and I found some relevant information. At least check out the video if you really believe there is a problem with Wall Street or corporations, and stop whining.
          http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2011/10/wall-street-protests-who-are-the-99-and-what-do-they-want.html

          there is one explanation^

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAOrT0OcHh0&feature=youtube_gdata_player
          there is a video definitely worth watching. put your life in perspective^

      • bob on 10.12.2011 at 2:12 pm

        You picked quite the forum to speak your mind.

    • buffalo on 10.11.2011 at 4:19 pm

      Perhaps its because more people sext, than even know what the “occupation” is all about.

      That said, I can understand sexting. But what exactly is the “occupation” supposed to accomplish? I think I’ll stick with sexting for now. The goals are perhaps a bit more clearly defined.

  • Kat Soderholm on 10.11.2011 at 10:14 am

    …and y’all also realize that the phone companies keep copies of all text messages, right? Not to mention that copies remain on your phone and the phone of the person you send them to until they are manually deleted, and some plans allow people to save/access texts online as well. If you have any interest whatsoever in keeping your sex life non-public, sexting is a *terrible* idea.

    • Will on 10.11.2011 at 1:31 pm

      To say that companies keep copies of all text messages is not really accurate. Most companies will only keep copies for 48hours to 2 weeks depending on the carrier. No more than a couple billing periods. With billions of texts being sent per day, storing all of them would be extremely expensive and definitely not very beneficial as it isn’t in their customers best interest for the most part.
      http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2008/05/do_text_messages_live_forever.html

      It is very dangerous, however, for your “partner” to have such text messages, photos, etc. Such things could be used against you some day. And, I can’t imagine it being an enjoyable experience anyway!

    • carl on 10.11.2011 at 3:11 pm

      To Tarif: Please, don’t fight for me. Thanks but no thanks.

  • predator on 10.11.2011 at 10:38 am

    How sad that this text-message generation has produced nothing but wimps, vying for attention behind a phone screen which they cannot achieve in real life because they are too scared. epic fail

  • Relevancy on 10.11.2011 at 12:29 pm

    “…first appeared in a London newspaper in 2005″

    You do realize that was over 6 years ago, right?

    • Someone's Going to Call me Ignorant on 10.11.2011 at 3:54 pm

      With the exponentially increased volume of texting and data in the air, why would it be less true now?

  • Sheep on 10.12.2011 at 12:10 am

    It seems painfully obvious (apparently not to BU Today) what this week’s video should have been about!

  • Bu Phanatic on 10.12.2011 at 3:59 am

    Occupy Wall Street… big deal. A bunch of people with no direction making the jobbed people’s (not jobless) commute more time consuming and expensive. Seems to me that they are just hanging out with no real message other than just taking up space. A real movement has leaders and a message (MLK for instance) that is conveyed properly, not just too many people making real business harder for the employed. Do the board of directors care about what is happening on the street when they just fly in on a chopper?

  • Bu Phanatic on 10.12.2011 at 4:02 am

    That kid has no game

  • Bu Phanatic on 10.12.2011 at 4:14 am

    too much just, excuse me

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