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Episode 67 - Dr. Poco Kernsmith and Dr. Roger Kernsmith: I <3 U Send Pix: Addressing Youth Sexting

Monday, March 21, 2011, 10:19:49 AM

Image of Drs. Poco Kernsmith and Roger Kernsmith

Behaviors like sexting are not new phenomena. However, technology increases the ease and risks of such behaviors. This podcast explores the prevalence of sexting and discuss an appropriate and balanced approach to practice and policy intervention.

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14 Reviews
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Average Rating: 4.2 stars (14 listener reviews )

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting , Sunday, May 04, 2014

By Tabitha Flynn :

The information addressed in this podcast by Dr. Poco Kernsmith and Dr. Roger Kernsmith was very informative. Dr. Poco Kernsmith stated a very good point on implementing prevention programs as early as elementary school. It is important for children to know the appropriate use of technology and the consequences that are associated with inappropriate use. Also parents need to play an active role in supervising the use of technology to help keep inappropriate behaviors under control.
It is very clear from the information stated by Dr. Poco Kernsmith and Dr. Roger Kernsmith that the statues and laws need to be modified to address incidents of sexting. The statues in place apply very harsh consequences to some cases of sexting. The example used by Dr. Poco Kernsmith of a young adolescent who is the sender of a sexual photo, charged with distributing child pornography. The laws need to be changed to incorporate new forms of punishment associated with the act of sexting.

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Average Rating: 3stars  response, Monday, February 03, 2014

By Larissa Bachman :

I think this podcast is a very interesting one. On the idea of "sexting", many people have different views. It is interesting to me that some people still believe that registration is necessary if there is a big age gap between the two, or if it involves two males. In a presentation given by Dr. David Heffler, he explained that a sex registry is actually not effective in America.

Growing up with technology as a part of my life, I can easily see how "sexting" has become such a phenomenon. When the idea of comparing sexting to talking on the phone in the past, it is easy to see that children just adapt to their surroundings, and may not look into the fact that what they are doing is indeed wrong or inappropriate. I think the Kernsmith's ideas for future research are quite important to the world of social work because there needs to be some more education given to young people who have been involved in sexting. With out this research, there will be no solid evidence to see where people's views are and opinions of the matter lay in regards to this topic. I think young people need to have some sort of repercaution for their behavior, but education will be the key, not punishment. I do not believe a 12 year old girl who sends a picture of her self to her "boyfriend" should be accused of child pornography, but should be able to learn why such behavior is troublesome. Education will be the most beneficial way to help kids learn from such a young age. It is important to start educating at a very young age as well.

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Average Rating: 5stars  review of podcast # 67, Monday, January 30, 2012

By Jackie :

The topic of sexting discussed in this podcast highlights some of the current issues that are arising from the collision of human behavior and new technologies. The guests point out that sexting is, in one respect, simply a technological extension of behaviors already being practiced by adolescents and even adults. No matter how much we may try to deny it, biologically everything about adolescence is tied up with the emergence of adult sexuality, which will always find a means of expressing itself through accepted cultural media. Considering the ubiquitous nature of technology in the lives of individuals today, it is not really very surprising that some adolescents are engaging in these kinds of activities. However, when you combine the poor decision making skills and lack of understanding of consequences that often accompany adolescence with the ease of digital distribution, sexting can be a very dangerous activity for teenagers to engage in. The discussion regarding the legal ramifications of sexting was very informative, and for me more than a little surprising. While I do think that there should some sort of consequence for certain types of sexting, it seems outlandish to me to prosecute someone for distributing child pornography for photographing their own bodies. Those laws are meant to protect minors from exploitation, not to prosecute them for exploring their own sexuality, even if it demonstrates extremely poor judgment.



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Average Rating: 5stars  review for podcast #67, Sunday, January 29, 2012

By Justin :

I found this podcast on “sexting” very interesting on different levels. I praise the guests for suggesting parental involvement at an early age, starting in elementary school, to prevent forms of “sexting”. Parents should be knowledgeable about the technology of the day in order to protect their children from poor decisions that may negatively influence their lives. I also found it interesting that children may be held accountable and punishable under the law for distributing child pornography, even though they were not the ones putting the information online. I feel that the person putting the photo or text online should be held accountable. The child sending the photo is guilty of using poor judgment, but not of providing child pornography because they did not intend the information to go online. I agree with the guests on the idea that public policies surrounding “sexting” need to be updated in order to protect the victims of coercion and “sextortion”. I agree that older individuals coercing children should be punished with a more intense sentence, while younger children receiving a lesser sentence or punishment. The children responsible for posting the information to the internet still need to be held responsible however. My main disagreement with the guest surrounding the issue is that the “sexting” phenomena be viewed as normalizing with the technology and time. “Sexting” can ruin a young individual’s life if the information falls into the wrong person’s hands and this behavior, in my opinion, should not be normalized. The guests noted that the media’s coverage of “sexting” encourages children to do engage in these activities. Along the same line the authors said that Social Workers should not panic when faced with adolescents engaging in this behavior. I understand why Social Workers should not panic, but I also wonder how a worker would not panic knowing all the negatives that can come for “sexting” behavior and information being posted on the web.

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting podcast, Tuesday, January 17, 2012

By Starla Jones :

Before hearing this podcast I did not think that sexting was such a universal as well as a huge issue, which is why this podcast is so enlightening. I think there needs to be more of awareness out there about the issue because I'm sure several individuals are not knowing the cons of sexting. But when sexting I believe the best consequence would be being labeled as a sex offender or being put in jail depending on the age of the adult and child which will determine how many years need to be served. i just cannot rap my mind around the fact that a full grown adult that is supposed to be mature and dating other adults would inappropriately send a message or a photo to a young child , what a corrupt world we live in.

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Average Rating: 4stars  test, Tuesday, January 17, 2012

By Amanda-Lin Taylor :

I found this podcast very informative and interesting. I really liked the introduction because it informed the listener that it is not just adolescents who are sexting, it is people who we admire, public figure heads, and etc. I already knew what an "average" teen already knows about sexting, I just did not know how people would tackel the problem in a "professional" way. I understand that consequences has to be conducted but what would be the right way in dong it so that way both parties at play could benefit or learn from the situation and this podcast gave me an answer. Education is a key factor here.

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting podcast review, Tuesday, January 17, 2012

By Brittany Kimura :

This was a very informative podcast that really defined the major implications sexting has on society and individuals in this day in age. It was interesting to hear about sextortion and how control over personal content sent through technological pathways is non-existent once it leaves the sender. The younger generation has to be better informed about the implications of these behaviors.

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting, Monday, January 16, 2012

By R Becsey :

I think this podcast was very informative. I had no idea sexting was such a big issue these days. I definitely agree that more information needs to be send to the younger crowd out there about the way the judicial system could, and from the sounds of it, will, react to these actions. I didn't know that the possibility of being labeled as a sex offender was at stake.if you're an adult and you send an inappropriate picture to a minor I understand it believe informing the ignorant is vital to the younger crowds these days!






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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting podcast, Monday, January 16, 2012

By mykeyta :

I must say I found out a lot of new and interesting information on this ‘sexting’. That’s crazy when they said, “there was even an app for that’. I was surprised to hear that. Who would have thought they would make an app for ‘sexting’. Both people had brought up really good points in their interview. I don’t agree with giving somebody prison because they sent a photo to somebody, but I do agree with some kind punishment. ‘Sexstortion’ I’ve never heard that word, he said it meant “when somebody takes the picture and uses it against you.” That’s a new word, with that definition I would of thought it was to back male them.

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting is more prevalent due to technology, Sunday, January 15, 2012

By Katelyn Pevehouse :

I agreed with the idea that charging a young teen with distribution of child pornography when they sent a picture of themselves is not fair. I do think that teens who redistribute the pictures they receive should be punished but jail time and registering as a sex offender does not fit the crime in my opinion. I think teens are going to send pictures of themselves whether its against the law or not.

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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting review, Thursday, January 12, 2012

By Samantha Potter :

I'm glad that I listened to this podcast, it really improved my knowledge on Sexting. I had no idea that sexting had gotten to the point of discussing what qualifies the need for someone having to register as a sex offender. I do agree that children/adolescents need to be educated about how to use technology properly because like the podcast said once it's out there, there is no controlling it; however I don't agree that it needs to be in elementary school. Overall, well done.


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Average Rating: 4stars  sexting podcast, Wednesday, January 11, 2012

By Sharona Feld :

This was so interesting and definitely educating. I learned so much new information that I did not know before. I learned that if a girl send a nude picture of herself it may be considered as child pornography. This really shocked my because I did not realize how serious sending a nude picture of yourself may be. I was also taken aback when I heard the speakers mention that if a nude picture was sent to someone and they chose to forward that message (picture) to other people they can be considered to be sex offenders. In general I never thought of sexting to have consequences but now that they mentioned it, it makes so much sense that certain sexting behavior should definitely have consequences. I also agreed with the fact that parents really should become a bit more technology savvy and follow their children's behaviors rather than be ignorant to anything that goes on with their child; and also they should talk to their children and explain that sending pictures may have negative outcomes and they can never be certain of what will happen with that personal information once they send it.

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Average Rating: 5stars  great message, Saturday, October 29, 2011

By Anonymous :

This is a very new topic that effects our youth today with no real direction on how to tackle the issue. Both speakers bring up valid points that disciplining with law is not the correct way to reach these youth. Like the speakers say, we hope this doesn't become the norm for youth to communicate so instead of labeling them sex offenders or distributing child pornography, educating youth is the best way to reach this population. All adolescents make mistakes and if a girl sends out a message of herself to get the attention of a boy does that make her a sex offender? I agree that legal intervention is not appropriate in the cases where two teenagers are doing this between themselves with no distribution. Dr. Poco stated that most parents are in favor of probation and prison for those who distribute photos they receive and I agree with this and she states that legal intervention should be implemented. Both these speakers have a clear view on where to go next with their research with I hope will begin to develop interventions that can educate these youth rather than have to go through the law.

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Average Rating: 5stars  addressing youth sexting, Saturday, April 02, 2011

By kaleighm :

Interestingly, ‘sexting’ is something that until very recently I was completely unaware of both the definition and the prevalence. I found it interesting that Dr. Kernsmith points out that human behavior really has not changed much, only the medium of which this behavior is exerted has. This statement is so very important to mainstream practice because of the familiar blaming towards youth today and the widespread belief that youth are living their lives much more dangerously than ever before. Dr. Kernsmith makes it very clear that this is simply not the case. Much like many forms of white-collar crime, sexting distribution is another more recent activity where legal sanctions and protections have fallen behind. Interestingly, Dr. Kernsmith & Dr. Kernsmith suggest rather than focusing on legislation, we instead need to focus on educating youth about the implications and consequences of sexting. Consequently, sexting may be considered a contributing factor in both teen dating violence and bullying, exemplifying the importance of education. As technology continues to grow, and face to face communication decreases, social workers need to be prepared to address technological and specifically sexting issues. Importance is placed on integrating parents and teachers into technology education so that awareness and monitoring behaviors can be better achieved. Unfortunately, as media consumers, the vast majority of people only hear about the sexting ‘horror stories’ and are unaware of the actual nature of sexting. By informing parents and teachers about the actuality of sexting, and engaging youth on their level, social workers can better approach this widespread phenomenon and effectively work to educate on technology and protection.

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DISCLAIMER: The content shared by the presenter(s) and/or interviewer(s) of each podcast is their own and not necessarily representative of any views, research, or practice from the UB School of Social Work or the inSocialWork® podcast series.