Texting To Sexting 

As much as times have changed, they are in many ways the same, just with a new twist from technology. Texting has become the phone conversation of the 21st century. Texting allows users to communicate without the obvious inappropriateness of talking on a phone at inopportune times. However, it can encourage behavior and or comments that may not be acceptable in a typical voice-to-voice conversation or in a public venue. An electronic message can feel more private and more  protective, yet the reality is that message or image can go "worldwide" if it falls into the wrong hands.

For young people, they may feel that they are just "being kids" and want to impress another with a revealing picture of themselves or maybe some comments that they wouldn't dare say on the phone or in person. The reality is that it's just like saying it on the phone or walking up to the receiver and handing them a picture. Worse yet, within moments a picture or text can instantly be forwarded to others and become a community-wide topic of discussion.

Helping young people understand the implications of their actions may help them think twice before acting. They can, at times, have trust in one another that certain images or texts won't be shared, but the reality is that all it takes is a disruption in a friendship or a betrayal from a trusted friend that will allow their secrets to be exposed. An inappropriate or illegal image posted on the web can impact someone's future from college to career. Understanding that nothing texted is a secret is an important lesson to learn.

-- July 2009 Crime Prevention Connection --

 

 

 

Mesa Police Department
Teen Connection

PO Box 1466
Mesa, AZ 85211

 

 

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