act of sending sexually explicit messages between mobile phones

Sexting is the act of sending sexually suggestive electronic messages, mainly between mobile phones.[1] The term became popular during the early 21st century. The term is a portmanteau of sex and texting.

What sexting might look like, on a mobile phone, using Sandro Botticelli's The Birth of Venus

The term was first used in print in 2005 in Australia.[2] A naked picture that you make of yourself is sometimes called a nelfie, a mix of the words naked and selfie.[3]

If adults exchange such pictures, this is not a problem as long as both consent. The problem starts when children do this: The image of a teenager or child with little clothes may be child pornography. Many countries have laws against child pornography. This usually includes penalties for owning or spreading such images.


  1. "Sexting". North Jersey. Retrieved Mar 25, 2015.
  2. Roberts, Yvonne (31 July 2005). "The one and only". Sunday Telegraph Magazine. Sydney, Australia: News Corp Australia. p. 22. Following a string of extramarital affairs and several lurid "sexting" episodes, Warne has found himself home alone, with Simone Warne taking their three children and flying the conjugal coop.
  3. Lane, Naomi (23 March 2016). "Chelsea Handler Shares NUDE SELFIE for Reese Witherspoon's Birthday!". The Hollywood Gossip.