The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) in the U.S. is accusing Teen Vogue and Snapchat of encouraging teens to create child pornography by “sexting” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Teen Vogue content, fed to children through the social media app Snapchat, includes messages such as, “Like anything worth doing, sexting takes practice,” “Here are 7 things you might not have known about sexting,” and “Sexting should make you feel good.”
“Sending someone details about what you want to do to them and getting back even more detail about what they want to do to you should be fun, easy, and ultimately joyful. Anything less than that isn’t worth your time,” said another message.
The NCOSE explains the many reasons sexting is dangerous, not least of which is that it exposes children to online predators.
A Washington Times article notes, “Teen Vogue is taking full advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic by promoting the risky and potentially illegal activity of sexting to its underage readers who are using the Internet now more than ever for school and play while hunkered down at home.”
According to the Times the FBI has issued a warning that school closings due to COVID-19 present a potential for increased risk of child exploitation.
The NCOSE insists that Teen Vogue and Snapchat “must be held socially accountable for promoting trends that put people at risk for exploitation.”
Teen Vogue has become notorious for publishing sexually explicit articles that normalize harmful sexual activity for its young readers. In 2017 Teen Vogue published a “Guide to Anal Sex,” for example.
Teen Vogue has 11.6 million digital users and 13.4 million social media followers, so this is not a small group of children being exposed.
The online magazine and its parent company, Conde Nast, have yet to defend themselves for putting children in the line of fire. In the past, Teen Vogue has refused to back down from providing dangerous and sexually explicit content.
Meanwhile, parents need to be extra vigilant about the online activities of their children. If you appreciate PAFE’s role in bringing you alerts on the cultural sexualization of our children, please support us with a donation by clicking here.
Teresa Pierre, Ph.D.