Internet Abuse among Teenagers and Its Relations to Internet Usage Patterns and Demographics

By Gencer, Suzan Lema; Koc, Mustafa | Educational Technology & Society, April 2012 | Go to article overview

Internet Abuse among Teenagers and Its Relations to Internet Usage Patterns and Demographics


Gencer, Suzan Lema, Koc, Mustafa, Educational Technology & Society


Introduction

Internet access and usage in the world has been proliferating year by year, with approximately 1.11 billion users in 2007, 1.67 billion in 2009, and 1.97 billion in 2010 (Miniwatts Marketing Group, 2010), indicating an upward trend in the number of digitally literate people. Such a rapid growth has been interacted with people's needs and motivation. Information, communication, and entertainment have been prominent motives behind the Internet use. The advantages of the Internet are undeniable and well-evidenced in the literature. Nevertheless, excessive or unregulated usage has been associated with a condition of Internet-related disturbances which Morahan-Martin (2008) calls "Internet abuse" referring to the "patterns of using the Internet that result in disturbances in a person's life but does not imply a specific disease process or addictive behavior" (p. 34). Some scholars or clinicians prefer to use the term "Internet addiction" to define this condition as a form of impulse control disorder (e.g., Young, 1998). Despite various approaches to the conceptualization of the condition, which is still developing and negotiated in ongoing research, studies acknowledged its existence and reported similar symptoms: school and work-related impairments, interpersonal problems, preoccupation with using the Internet, using the Internet to improve negative moods, and serious disturbances in users' social capitals (Morahan-Martin, 2008). The present study adopted the concept of Internet abuse because it examined the condition in a non-pathological population and operationalized the Internet behavior as a continuum from normal to problematic usage.

Nowadays, the adoption of digital technologies is known to be higher in young adolescents than adults. For example, the highest proportion of computer and Internet usage belongs to the 16-24 year old age group in Turkey (TUIK, 2010), where Internet users aged 15 and older were reported as the most engaged users in Europe in terms of time spent and the content consumed on the Internet (comScore, 2009). Being the mainstream consumers and drivers of digital contents, youngsters are at the center of a lucrative digital marketing enterprise. New products are designed essentially for appealing to emotions, habits, and values in youth culture (Montgomery, Gottlieb-Robles & Larson, 2004). This in turn makes young people early adopters and heavy users of digital technologies. Such an involvement, coupled with the psychologically sensitive developments of adolescence period, can make teenagers more susceptible to digital disturbances such as Internet abuse (Chou, Condron & Belland, 2005; Tsai & Lin, 2003). Therefore, empirical investigations of factors in problematic Internet use among teenagers have been called for to help parents, teachers, and counselors in guiding teenagers about the conscious and beneficial effects of Internet use. This study attempted to contribute to this call by exploring possible interactions between Turkish high school students' status of Internet abuse, Internet usage patterns, and demographic characteristics.

Although prior research on overall analysis of Internet abuse is prolific, the research on socio-demographic differences in this field is rather sparse or inconclusive. Gender is one of the predominantly investigated variables seen in the literature. While some studies indicated no gender differences in Internet abuse (e.g., Ferraro, Caci, D'amico & Blasi, 2007; Lee et al., 2007; Soule, Shall & Kleen, 2003), others revealed that males were more likely to become Internet abusers than females (e.g., Chou et al., 2005; Morahan-Martin & Schumacher, 2000; Yang & Tung, 2007). Although socio-economic status (SES) is an important factor especially in the developing countries, where digital divide still exists to some degree, not much attention has been devoted to this demographic variable. Only a few studies concluded that SES was not significantly associated with Internet abuse (e. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Internet Abuse among Teenagers and Its Relations to Internet Usage Patterns and Demographics
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.