The straight talk on smartphone sex - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

The straight talk on smartphone sex

Posted: Updated:
  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Huntsville school board member named in civil suit by former employer

    Huntsville school board member named in civil suit by former employer

    Thursday, August 21 2014 11:56 PM EDT2014-08-22 03:56:59 GMT
    Mike Culbreath is accused of conspiring with James Packard, a competing developer, to convince potential tenants to choose a competing development in the City of Huntsville.More >>
    Mike Culbreath is accused of conspiring with James Packard, a competing developer, to convince potential tenants to choose a competing development in the City of Huntsville.More >>
  • Three children found in home with meth lab outside

    Three children found in home with meth lab outside

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:30 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:30:49 GMT
    Authorities arrested Ashley Freeno and Christopher Silva after finding a methamphetamine lab outside their home. Further investigations revealed that drugs and other paraphernalia were inside their home where three young children live.The Department of Human Resources have placed the children into the custody of family members.Freeno was charged with manufacturing meth in the 2nd degree and two counts of possession. Silva was charged with manufacturing meth in the 1st degree and two counts of...More >>
    Authorities arrested Ashley Freeno and Christopher Silva after finding a methamphetamine lab outside their home. Further investigations revealed that drugs and other paraphernalia were inside their home where three young children live.The Department of Human Resources have placed the children into the custody of family members.Freeno was charged with manufacturing meth in the 2nd degree and two counts of possession. Silva was charged with manufacturing meth in the 1st degree and two counts of...More >>
  • Man arrested after agents seized over one pound of meth, three firearms, and one vehicle

    Man arrested after agents seized over one pound of meth, three firearms, and one vehicle

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:11 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:11:14 GMT
    On Aug 14, the Madison-Morgan STAC Team and Morgan County Drug Task Force responded to complaints from the community near Hulaco Road.Upon arrival, a search warrant was carried out at the home of Dustin Tyler Smith in Joppa Alabama.Agent had begun a new investigation Agents seized over one pound of methamphetamine, three firearms, and one vehicle.Smith was arrested in 2013 for trafficking in methamphetamine. He was out on bond and also on Community Corrections regarding his most recent arrest...More >>
    On Aug 14, the Madison-Morgan STAC Team and Morgan County Drug Task Force responded to complaints from the community near Hulaco Road.Upon arrival, a search warrant was carried out at the home of Dustin Tyler Smith in Joppa Alabama.Agent had begun a new investigation Agents seized over one pound of methamphetamine, three firearms, and one vehicle.Smith was arrested in 2013 for trafficking in methamphetamine. He was out on bond and also on Community Corrections regarding his most recent arrest...More >>
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Teens who own a smartphone may be at a higher risk of engaging in risky sexual behavior, according to recent studies.

The findings point to the growing amount of time teens spend on their mobile devices and the anonymity that the technology lends.

A 2010 Pew-Internet survey found four percent of teens who own a cell phone have sent a sexually suggestive image of themselves via text messaging.

Research at the University of Southern California's School of Social Work also suggests teens who own a smartphone are twice as likely to have sex with a person they met online than a teen without one.

Media psychologist Dr. Pavica Sheldon's research at UAH's communications department revealed similar findings among teens.

"They are high-sensation seekers. High-sensation seekers tend to use Internet more, cell phones more and they're also more likely to engage in risky behavior," Dr. Sheldon said.

What was once a privilege has now become a common necessity among people who were born between 1980-1994 – a group that Dr. Sheldon calls "digital natives," or the "net generation."

"They feel more comfortable [online] because they don't have this face-to-face interaction," Dr. Sheldon said.

Bob Jones High School guidance counselor Heather Porter said it is rare for students to approach her about sexual encounters online via smartphones, but Porter acknowledges the problem.

"They're very bold in what they do to each other, send to each other, say to each other -- because they're not really saying it," Porter said.

Texting, tweeting, and other forms of messaging, Porter said, offers a safe shield of anonymity.

"They don't have to say it and have any consequence. There's no embarrassment anymore," she said.

Parents do have options to off-set the problem. Mobile apps like My Mobile Watchdog and software like Social Shield alert parents to risky online activity.

Researchers suggest that trust and communication with teens could be more effective. Results from the Pew-Internet survey also showed kids with unlimited texting plans may be more likely to receive sexually suggestive messages.

Teens with limited plans, or those who paid for their own messaging plans, saw a lower risk.

Copyright 2013 WAFF. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow

1414 North Memorial Parkway
Huntsville, AL 35801
256-533-4848

WAFF Is a Proud Member
of the Raycom Family of Stations


FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WAFF. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.