LOL or OMG?!

People sharing naked pictures as a way of flirting is nothing new.

However, what has changed considerably is the speed and ease with which you can share. At one time you had to take and print a physical photo before you could share it and there would only be one copy. Now however, everyone has a camera on their phone and photos are digital images which can be shared instantly and easily. Indeed, using webcams or sending mobile pictures can be a spontaneous decision, made without thinking about what could happen and what people might think.

Most of the time, these intimate pictures are shared between consenting partners – it can be fun, exciting and feel a bit naughty. People wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t a bit of a turn on and let’s be honest, you wouldn’t send them if you didn’t trust the other person would you? Indeed, there are many images shared which never leave the intended recipient.

The trouble is, once you press send that photo or film clips is completely out of your control.

How do you know your partner won’t show one of their mates to impress them, make them jealous or prove a point that they are really doing it?

You may completely trust your partner, and they might understand that it was private and meant only for them – but what if one of their mates looks through their phone (or their parents!) Do you trust them too?

Check out our film on our sister site Urdecision about this very topic…

What happens to these images when the relationship ends? So ask yourself, “if we break up, will this person respect me enough not to share my pictures? What if things end really badly? “

Unfortunately, technology is specifically designed to make it quick and easy to share with many people. It only takes a second to upload a photo to a social network or to send the image to another phone.  It might only be for a laugh or a joke but it can get out of hand very quickly.

There are legal issues to consider too – did you know that if you are under 18 it is still illegal to send rude pictures or films to your partner it is technically still classed as child pornography! Even if you are over 16 and legally able to have sex – click here to find out more about the law…

Webcam sharing sites can also cause problems when people record your actions. It only takes screen or webcam capture software to end up with a video clip.

Finally, it is always nice when someone fancies you and tells you how attractive you are, but this should not be as a means to get you to do something you are not comfortable doing. Making a choice to send someone a sext is one thing but feeling like you have to because they gave you a compliment or are encouraging you to do it is not the same thing. If the person asking for this acts up when you refuse is this really someone you want to trust? If they accept your refusal without question they sound like a good friend.

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