Everyone knows that teenagers these days are lust-crazed flesh demons hell-bent on utilizing technology you don't understand to "sext" each other videos of themselves dancing naked to the dubstep and the rap. So what gives with this new study claiming that only one percent of 10 to 17-year-olds have sexted?
Sure: more 17-year-olds have sexted each other than 10-year-olds. But the researchers still call the study "reassuring," assuming that you are "reassured" by the fact that we do not live in a nation where millions of Courtney Stoddens are taking alliteration in a horrible new direction:
Only 1 percent of kids aged 10 to 17 have shared images of themselves or others that involve explicit nudity, a nationally representative study found. Roughly the same number said they'd shared suggestive but less graphic photos; while 7 percent said they'd received either type of picture.
The research suggests texting of sexual photos among younger kids is extremely rare but more common among older teens.
The results are reassuring, showing that teen sexting isn't rampant, usually isn't malicious, and is generally not something parents should panic over, said lead author Kimberly Mitchell, a research assistant psychology professor at the University of New Hampshire.
Is it possible that we've all overstated the incidence of lusty cell-phone communication? That we somehow managed to overlook the fact that most teenagers are not engaged in hot, hot, hot teen sex? That we're afraid of new communicative technologies and have been only imagining their worst, and sexiest, possible applications? That we maybe, sort of, I don't know, liked the idea that young hardbody teens were constantly satiating their lustful desires on one another? Nahhh. It's probably just that the teens are lying!