There are a million ways to communicate with people today and most are available at the swipe of a finger on our phones.  There are the obvious texting, calling (does anyone even use the call function on their phone anymore?) Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Vine, and whatever new ones have come out by the time I finish this sentence.

These apps and programs are all fun and can be harmless if used with caution.  However, often they are used to send out naked or almost-naked photos. Don’t do this.  No one ever looks back on their life and says, “Man, I wish I would have sent more nudes of myself to people”.

Here’s why it’s not a great idea:

  • If it involves anyone under the age of 18, it is illegal and can lead to felony charges for soliciting, manufacturing, distributing, or possessing criminally sexual abusive material.
  • Remember, even when a photo is deleted it’s never actually gone.  Anything digital is traceable.  But also there’s this little thing called a “screenshot” that makes those 6-second pictures last a lifetime.
  • Once you hit “send” you have no control over who sees that picture in the future.

If you receive a questionable picture you didn’t ask to get:

  • Talk to a trusted adult right away (BUT DON’T SEND THE PIC TO THEM)
  • Find an adult you trust who can witness you deleting the picture (you can be prosecuted if there is evidence that you intended to keep the picture)
  • Block the sender