Sure, people like sending - and getting - rudes’n’nudes. But there are smart ways and dumb ways to handle yourself (so to speak) while doing it.
Here are some tips to avoid looking stupid. ...or needing a lawyer!
DO... double-check you’re sending messages to the right person before you hit Send. ‘Dan’ can be dangerously close to ‘Dad’ in your Contacts list, and asking your pop if he’s “Hungry for summa dis…?” can forever change the family dynamic.
DON’T… include your face or any other ‘giveaway it’s you’ if you don’t feel like it – whether it’s a tattoo or your school portrait hanging in the background. …wait, why have you got a portrait of yourself in your bedroom? Oh no, DON'T be doing this in your folks room!
Get some perspective
DO… make sure someone is up for ‘that kind of message’ before you hit Send. Try “Hey, cool if I send you something sexty?” Then, IF you get a yes, start with something a little milder to see what kind of reaction you get.
Obviously, do not send anything if there is ANY suggestion they’re not massively into it. There's getting a ‘sexy’ message from someone you’re into, when you're in the mood – and then there's getting one from someone you’re just not into or when you’re not in the mood. One person's 'sexy' is another's 'gross', 'awkward' or even 'threatening'.
DON’T… feel like your life has ended if something private ends up in other people’s hands/devices. Sometimes this stuff can happen – if it does, remember: This is not your fault; there are steps you can take; and you will be ok – it’s not the end of the world.
Take the pressure down
DO… NOT hassle anyone about getting their sext on. Sure, ask, but people feel differently about this stuff – and at different times, i.e. they might be into it one day and not the next. Pressuring someone not only makes you look like a douche, it can be considered harassment.
DON’T… do anything you don’t want to. Tell anyone who harasses you for pics or anything you’re not up for to buck the fack up! If someone said to your face, “Hey, take your shirt off for me” or “Talk dirty to me” – and you didn’t want to – you’d tell them where to go, right? Same deal here.
Keep it classy
DO… let people use their imaginations. The fact is, sending words and describing ‘possibilities’ usually conjures up much hotter mental images than a screen full of ‘meat and potatoes’.
DON’T… ever send or show other people a pic that someone has sent you in confidence. Understand? Maybe if we put it this way: DON’T ever send or show other people a pic that someone has sent you in confidence. If you do, you’re a douche and …yeah, no, just DON’T.
Use your imagination
DO… remember, if someone asks for a pic, you can send stuff you find online rather than actual pics of yourself, with a message like “How ‘bout we recreate this move tonight…?”
DON’T… send pics of yourself that look like crime-scene photos. Seriously, flopping your junk on the kitchen bench next to a sandwich will not whet anyone’s sexual appetite. Also WASH YOUR HANDS BEFORE YOU EAT THE SANDWICH, K?!
Take out the trash
DO… delete any sensitive messages you’ve sent or received, and let people know when you’ve done it. It puts their mind at ease and makes you seem like an all-round decent person.
DON’T… forget to empty the old ‘Recently deleted’ or ‘Trash’ folders on your device(s). If you’re going to do it, do it right.
DO… be a decent person who never, ever even contemplates doing the wrong thing with a message or image of someone else – no matter how you feel about them.
DON’T… underestimate the way things can go if you forward stuff to other people. When someone sends you something private they’re trusting you, nobody else. And if it gets out of control, whatever happens, it’s down to you.
Send the right message
DO… tell anyone who tries to show you private messages or images of other people that they’re a douche and they need to read this article ASAP.
DON'T… be thinking that if someone else forwards you a private message or image of somebody else you’re not at fault if you just forward it on to others. Be a stand-up citizen and put a stop to this digital douchery now.
Know what's what
DO… know the law. Depending on your/the recipient’s age and where you are, sending or receiving a nude/sext can result in legal consequences – even if the images are of yourself! Just asking someone for an image inappropriately can be deemed ‘illegal harassment’.
DON’T… worry that all forms of fone-fun will end up with you in prison or wearing an electronic ankle-bracelet for the rest of your life – as long as you and your spesh’ are both into to it, there are plenty of ways to make sweet phone love, without bustin’ out your camera.
So, go to lawstuff.org.au, select your state or territory, click on the ‘Sexting’ link (Under ‘Sex, Love and Health’) to make sure you’re clear on what’s crossing the line when it comes to gettin’ freaky with your phone…