Internet Use Causes Addictive Behavior Essay.

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Details:The research paper will require students to submit 8-10 double-spaced, typed pages regarding a topic identified in the textbook or another topic relative to this course.




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The internet may be referred to as the largest source of information in the modern world. The internet uses numerous means of connecting people including websites, chat rooms, and blog spots that enhance communication with people from around the globe. Since its inception in 1973, the internet has grown at an amazing rate, with over 51 million people being on-line by the second quarter of 1997 in the US alone. The internet has become so enjoyable that it has become an addiction. Studies have revealed that overuse of the internet comes with a special kind of addiction. People are continually disconnected from the real world and lost in the so called ‘cyber community’ to an extent of forgetting important aspects such as family responsibilities, work, social life, and health concerns.


Although internet addiction may not be categorized among mental disorders, many researchers have reported the problem as a behavior-oriented addiction. The most commonly accepted definition of internet addiction explains it as a physical or mental dependence on the internet; particularly, this is a condition involving tolerance, withdrawal, and preoccupation with the internet. This condition was first described by a scientist called Young in 1998 when she claimed that addiction could be applied to the internet usage since the symptoms of internet addiction had the same characteristics as those for alcohols and tobacco addiction. She later developed a measure for internet addiction which consisted of 20 questions on a Likert scale, since then, the notion of internet addiction has been accepted and widespread among academicians and clinicians (Greefield, 2009).


The recent studies on internet addiction focus on three specific factors that help explain and define internet addiction: social, personal, and internet-related. First, personal factors for instance introspective characteristics, low self-efficacy, poor communication skills, and compulsive behaviors have been highlighted as a major driving force towards internet addiction. Secondly, factors in the social environment such as weak family support often create an atmosphere for the addiction. Furthermore, socio-psychological factors that involve a blend of family and personal factors may further lead to internet addiction. The third category of factors entails internet-related factors such as ease of access, long internet usage time, and superior internet skills which can also facilitate addiction (Young, 2011).

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