Sunday, January 22, 2012

Being Lonely and Problematic Internet Use?

Here is a summary of an article posted on the ReStart website about the link between being lonely and problematic internet use. Research is showing that those who develop problematic use of the internet use are trying to develop social networks --  and the use of the internet for this purpose doesn't seem to result in better social supports. Certainly, this has been my experience of teens on the autism spectrum that are part of gaming guilds or who communicate about with "friends" they met via the internet.

Internet Use and Its Relationship to Loneliness

Posted in Internet Addiction
CyberPsychology & Behavior

Internet Use and Its Relationship to Loneliness

Published in Volume: 4 Issue 3: July 5, 2004
Eric J. Moody, BS
The association between Robert Weiss's bimodal theory of loneliness and Internet use was examined. The degree of social and emotional loneliness was assessed using the Social and Emotional Loneliness scale. This was compared with self-report measures of Internet use and the breadth of one's network of friends, both online and on a face-to-face basis. Low levels of social and emotional loneliness were both associated with high degrees of face-to-face networks of friends, while high levels of Internet use were associated with low levels of social loneliness and high levels of emotional loneliness. This supports recent research that has found that the Internet can decrease social well-being, even though it is often used as a communication tool.
Access this research article

To cite this article: Moody, E. J. (2004) Internet Use and Its Relationship to Loneliness. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 4(3): 393-401. doi:10.1089/109493101300210303.

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