Sunday, September 25, 2011

Factors in lonliness and depression in cyberspace

Cyberpsychology and Behavior (2007)


This study investigates how disembodiment-that is, transcendence of body constraints in cyberspace-in online chat affects social psychological well-being. The results demonstrate that disembodiment is a strong predictor of increased loneliness and depression, and decreased social support. However, the amount of chat use is a positive contributor to decreased offline estrangement and depression, and increased happiness. These contrasting results suggest that online chat use is a technology for social connection used for offline connectivity, but the disembodiment motive is associated with declines in social support and psychosocial well-being. The investigation of specified motives for online interaction, personal competency, or advanced technological alternatives in interaction is suggested for future research on the effects of online interaction on offline outcomes.

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