In this Section
244855 Prevalence and Correlates of Sexting, Cyberbullying, and Risky Internet Use among Urban High School Students
Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 1:30 PM
Background: The majority of youth are online and using cell phones. These technological advances, however, bring the potential for risky activities, such as online sexual requests, posting/sending sexually suggestive/nude pictures (sexting), and cyberbullying, which may be associated with risky sex and mental health issues. Few studies, however, have examined the prevalence and correlates of these behaviors among racial/ethnic minority youth.
Methods: Urban high school students (n=1233) from a large school district in Southeast Texas completed assessments. Measures of risky Internet and massively multi-player online game (MMOG) use (e.g., online request for sex), Internet pornography, sexting, and cyberbullying were used. Chi-square analyses examined how factors varied by gender, race/ethnicity, age, and weekly Internet/cell phone use. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were also conducted. Internet or cell phone users were analyzed.
Results: Sample was 62.3% female, 38.4% black, 50.3% Hispanic, 11.3% Other, mean age was 16.3 (SD=0.69) years. Almost 1 in 5 students reported purposefully or accidentally viewing pornography online; approximately 25% sent/posted a nude picture or sexually suggestive message; one-third reported receiving messages or pictures. More than 10% reported being bullied or victimized online; 13% of MMOG users reported a cybering/cybersex request. In unadjusted analyses, males, frequent Internet/cell phone users, and students designated as “other” for race/ethnicity were most likely to participate in activities. Black students were more likely to participate in pornography and sexting; Hispanic students to participate in cyberbullying. Multivariate analyses confirmed results.
Conclusion: Implications for development of interventions to reduce risky technologically-based activities will be discussed.
Learning Areas:Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Keywords: Adolescents, Sex
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: am an assistant professor of behavioral sciences and health promotion and do research in adolescent sexual health.
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.
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