Sexting, when someone sends a sexual explicit photo of themselves via cell phone, snapchat, email, or facebook, is a significant social problem.Much of this social problem comes from the increased availability of cellular telephones."Today about 80 percent of teens between the ages of 12 and 17 own a cell phone, and about half of those own a smartphone," said DuBravac. That's about twice the rate from just two years ago.Its possible that parents dont understand the consequences and open access that children can experience via smartphone. Arguably, one of the main causes of why sexting is becoming such a big deal is that teens are getting cell phones earlier and earlier every year. It can be argued that parents should supply their kids with a basic phones, until they are developmentally prepared to navigate smart phone technology. Having these smart phones gives teenagers more freedom which is something most teens do not need, kids and young teens learn from example.When it comes to sexting, most teenagers do it because of the attention that it draws to them, and the mentality that sexting is cool. Additionally, teens report that social pressure encourages them to sext. According to Hanna Rosin The Atlantic articleWhy Kids Sext 70 percent of young girls felt pressured into sexting. Most teens are worried about their self-image and the lack of moral instruction with the use of smartphones. This helps conceptualize sexting as a social behavior that is not unique to smartphone technology. Sexting can be more deeply analyzed using concepts in Social Psychology, such as normative social influence, diffusion of responsibility, and social facilitation. .
Social influence plays a big part in sexting because teenagers want to fit in, and will do whatever they can to meet this expectation. According to the Social Psychology textbook, social influence by definition means the many ways that people affect one another, including changes in attitudes, beliefs, feelings, and behavior that result from the comments, actions, or even the mere presence of others ( Gilovich, Keltner, Chen, & Nisbett 310).