Teens Warned of ‘Sexting’ Ramifications

By Sarah Klein

The number of teens sending sexually-laced text messages is on the rise, according to the Manitoba government.

Tuesday is International Safer Internet Day and the province is reminding parents about keeping their children safe online.

“Think before you press send,” Family Services Minister Gord Mackintosh said in a release, also noting the average teen now sends almost 3,500 texts a month.

The main concern nowadays is youth who send nude photos of themselves.

“The images can end up online forever and cause a myriad of problems from humiliation to extortion, criminal sanctions and suicide,” Mackintosh added. “One American study indicated that 20 per cent of teens say they have participated in sexting.”

An interactive website has been setup to educate youth on the short-term costs and the long-term ramifications of texting at TextED.ca.