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The sensation of sexting

People are linking their sexuality to their phones. That’s the future. We’re becoming more and more involved in technology in ways we couldn’t have imagined.

Digital dirty talk is so accessible and instant that getting turned on via instant messages can be part of everyday sexual prowess.

“Sexting is typically defined as the transmission of sexually explicit messages, images, or photos via cell phone, the Internet, and other electronic media,” said Natalie Rosen, a Dalhousie professor of Human Sexuality.

“Many studies have found that those who reported previous sexting were significantly more likely to be sexually active and engage in higher-risk sexual behaviours, like unprotected sex, use of alcohol and other drugs before sex,” Rosen said.

A third-year Dal health promotion student, who has asked to remain anonymous, said he thinks sexting is just like sex and that as long as it’s consensual then it’s perfectly okay.

“I think it’s kind of a fun way to use technology, to interact with people. How can you say there’s something bad about sexting?” he said.

Sexting can be used to replace sex, as foreplay to sex, to masturbate, and even as a less-awkward way to communicate what you want and like in bed without directly giving directions.

“It can be kind of fun and hot if you’re sitting around kinda horny,” said the health promotion student, who uses the app Grindr which he said is a “whole other thing” because “sex is always in the background.”

The culture around Grindr is heavily revolved around sex he said, and the app doesn’t give an accurate representation of the real-life gay community. It’s more anonymous than Tinder so people are more prone to be more aggressive off the bat because of it’s all-about-sex dynamic where he said Tinder is super-tame.

In 2015, the Australian government released the results of two years of research exploring the differences in sexting behaviour in the country among teenagers and adults.

 The study was conducted through the University of Sydney Law School.

Although the survey was aimed at youth aged 13 to 18, adult participants were included in the study to provide comparative data.

The study found that “adult females were significantly less likely than other groups to have sent images to more than five people.”

A common misperception was acknowledged in the study: that women send nudes more often than men. The results proved differently, showing that men are more likely to send nudes in all cases, and also that 59 per cent of those over 19 have sent a nudie pic.

“People are linking their sexuality to their phones. That’s the future,” explained the health promotion student.

“We’re becoming more and more involved in technology in ways we couldn’t have imagined. Like on Grindr, you’re literally touching your phone, like you’re connecting your body to your phone and connecting with people,”

Composed with files from Sabina Wex

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