So it wasn't a publicity stunt after all.

James Franco, 35, is speaking out about his Instagram chats with a 17-year-old girl, which went viral online earlier this week.

Though the age of consent in New York is 17, it was still pretty creepy to see him ask Scottish teen Lucy Clode if he should get a hotel room for them after meeting briefly outside his "Of Mice and Men" theater.

While some thought it was a stunt for his new movie, "Palo Alto," about a high school soccer coach who hooks up with a student, Franco came clean this morning on "Live with Kelly and Michael."

"I was feeling awkward, I didn't want to come on the show and just feel awkward," he said. "I'm embarrassed, and I guess I'm just a model of how social media is tricky. It's a way people meet each other today, but what I've learned, I guess just because I'm new to it, is you don't know who's on the other end. You meet somebody in person and you get a feel for them, you don't know who you're talking to. I used bad judgment and I learned my lesson."

"I have a very good life," he added. "But not only do I have to go through the embarrassing kind of rituals of meeting someone, but sometimes if I do that, then it gets published for the world. It's doubly embarrassing."

Michael Strahan and Kelly Ripa applauded Franco for his honesty and then went to commercial.

What do you think of his admission? Sound off below!

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