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Digital media reaches unprecedented numbers of youth in an individualized, responsive, and accessible way. It is crucial that youth have access to reliable, meaningful information and tools around sexual and emotional health through the mediums that they use and contribute to every day. The interactive nature of digital media breaks new ground in teaching sexual and emotional health by allowing youth to have a voice in how and what they learn.
For the Section's 2009 annual conference, we held a one-day symposium exploring novel approaches to reach, educate and engage youth in their sexual and reproductive health using new virtual media such as the Internet (e.g., social networking and peer education sites), health games, and film. Then, in January 2011, Dr. Melissa Gilliam, chief of the Section, and Kylene Guse, education coordinator, came together with four other experts for a roundtable discussion on the most recent developments in the fields of new media and sexuality education. This discussion (PDF), along with the 2009 symposium, gave rise to a special issue of the journal Sexuality Research and Social Policy.