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Cyberpsychol Behav. 2009 Aug;12(4):451-5. doi: 10.1089/cpb.2008.0327.

Loneliness as the cause and the effect of problematic Internet use: the relationship between Internet use and psychological well-being.

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1
Department of Communication, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio 44242-0001, USA. jkim23@kent.edu

Abstract

The current research started from the assumption that one of the major motives driving individuals' Internet use is to relieve psychosocial problems (e.g., loneliness, depression). This study showed that individuals who were lonely or did not have good social skills could develop strong compulsive Internet use behaviors resulting in negative life outcomes (e.g., harming other significant activities such as work, school, or significant relationships) instead of relieving their original problems. Such augmented negative outcomes were expected to isolate individuals from healthy social activities and lead them into more loneliness. Even though previous research suggests that social use of the Internet (e.g., social networking sites, instant messaging) could be more problematic than entertainment use (e.g., downloading files), the current study showed that the former did not show stronger associations than the latter in the key paths leading to compulsive Internet use.

PMID:
19514821
DOI:
10.1089/cpb.2008.0327
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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