Adult sex photos
A 2009 study found that 4 percent of teenagers aged 14–17 claim to have sent sexually explicit photos of themselves.
Fifteen percent of these teens also claimed to have received sexually explicit photos.
As a result of sexting being a relatively recent practice, ethics are still being established by both those who engage in it and those who create legislation based on this concept.
Whether sexting is seen as a positive or negative experience typically rests on the basis of whether or not consent was given to share the images.
Based on the interviews conducted by Albury and Crawford, they discovered that sexting is commonly used in positive aspects.
According to Albury and Crawford, sexting was not only an activity occurring in the context of flirtation or sexual relationships, but also between friends, as a joke or during a moment of bonding.” Reportedly, hedonism played a role in motivating sexting, and the length of relationship was negatively correlated with sexting behaviors.
Despite it being widely reported in the media, the overall prevalence figure of 2.5% masks a dramatic age effect that indicates that more than 1 in 8 mid-teen minors admit to having sexted." Strassberg, Mc Kinnon, et al.
In the University of Utah's study, researchers Donald S. Sustaíta, and Jordan Rullo surveyed 606 teenagers ages 14–18 and found that nearly 20 percent of the students said they had sent a sexually explicit image of themselves via cell phone, and nearly twice as many said that they had received a sexually explicit picture.
Of those receiving such a picture, over 25 percent indicated that they had forwarded it to others.
Nevertheless, Australian laws currently view under-18s as being unable to give consent to sexting, even if they meet the legal age for sexual consent.
Sexting has been promoted further by several direct messaging applications that are available on smartphones.
The study had a small sample size, so more research needs to be done surrounding sexting and motivation, but it is clear that sexting is a phenomenon that is not constrained to simply unattached individuals looking for fun; it is used by those in intimate relationships to increase feelings of intimacy and closeness one's partner.