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Sexting among adolescents: A nuanced and gendered online challenge for young people

Journal article
Authors Jonas Burén
Carolina Lunde
Published in Computers in Human Behavior
Volume 85
Pages 210-217
ISSN 0747-5632
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Psychology
Pages 210-217
Language en
Keywords Sexting; Sexting partners; Internet; Adolescents; Gender; Online risk-taking
Subject categories Psychology


This study examined adolescents' sexting experiences, with an emphasis on the prevalence of sending and receiving sexts from romantic partners, friends/peers, online friends, and strangers. We also examined the quality of sexting experiences and individual and psychosocial factors associated with sending sexts. In total, 1653 Swedish adolescents aged 12 to 16 (M age = 14.16) completed a questionnaire. We found that 20–32% reported having received sexts and 4–16% having sent sexts. These rates typically differed depending on who the participants received sext from or sent sext to. Girls experienced more pressure to send sexts, and had more negative sexting experiences. Multiple logistic regressions showed significant relationships between online risk-taking, age, pubertal timing, family income, family and friend support, and sending sexts. The strength of these relationships differed by gender and by who the sext was sent to. This study highlights the importance of viewing adolescents’ sexting as a complex and gendered online phenomenon.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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