Despite growing research interest in sexting, not much is known about individual and country differences in engaging in sexting.
Therefore, the aims of this study were to investigate (a) which individual and country characteristics explain sexting and
(b) whether individual predictors vary across countries. On the individual level, we investigated age, gender, sensation seeking,
and internet use. On the country level, we investigated traditionalism, gross domestic product, and broadband internet penetration.
The sample consisted of 14,946 adolescents (49.7% boys) aged 11-16 from 20 European countries. Data were collected as part
of the EU Kids Online project. Participants were interviewed at home. Using multilevel modeling, findings indicate that on
the individual level, age, sensation seeking, and frequency of internet use predicted sexting across all countries. Gender
differences in sexting varied across countries. Although country characteristics (GDP, broadband internet penetration, traditional
values) had no direct effect on adolescent sexting, traditionalism significantly predicted gender differences in sexting.
In more traditional countries, gender differences were more pronounced than in less traditional countries, with more boys
than girls engaging in sexting. In less traditional countries, gender differences were smaller.