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Readers blame parents for teen 'sexting' trouble

Categories: Canada, Community

Children who 'sext' are the result of poor parenting, say some readers. (iStock)

There may be a fine line between 'sexting' and child pornography, but it's mainly the fault of parents that their teenagers are sending explicit photos to each other in the first place - or so say many CBC readers in an outpouring of reaction to a story on how 'sexting' can be considered a crime in many countries, including Canada, if the people portrayed are minors.

In the comments on Tuesday's article, readers place a large amount of blame on parenting skills - or lack thereof.

"The parents should be charged for not being parents," pbs314 writes.

"It is up to parents to educate their children on the risks and dangers involved in sharing such images of yourself with anyone," writes LittleOl'Me. "If your child is not old or mature enough to make an educated decision, a high end cellphone is probably not the best idea."

Commenters compared ideas: Should kids not be allowed to use cellphones until the age of 18? Should parents install monitoring app, or routinely read their kids' texts?

"Many, if not all, of the issues with kids render down to poor parenting. Failing to instill a sense of self virtue and empathy towards others is the underlying problem," writes KevinDW.

"Kids today are doing things that my generation would never have considered because, well, it's not just wrong, it's mean spirited."

But kids will be kids, and studies show sexting has become a common practice among teens and young people.

Putting the blame game aside, readers agree there needs to be more protection for kids who are unwitting victims.

"Although part of me is thinking that if you are stupid enough to create and send a digital file of yourself naked you deserve whatever you get, I think there needs to be a law to protect people," Third Estate writes.

"If there were severe penalties associated with distributing personal images people might think twice before pressing send."

And what about the kids who still 'sext'? Some readers suggested there needs to be laws in place so they can avoid trouble in the future.

"I ... don't believe that if you save those pictures until you are 18+ then you become a child pornographer," writes Greggore.

"I think we should be allowed to remember, discuss and write about our pre-adult sex life. If not then Judy Blume should pull all of her books from the book store."

As always, we thank you for following our coverage and offering your personal opinions. We invite readers to continue the conversation below.

Tags: Community Reaction, Technology

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