Activities of Those Addicted to the Internet

What do those who are addicted to the Internet do while online? According to the Stanford researchers, Internet-dependent individuals look at pornography, gamble, visit chat rooms and forums, do online shopping, spend time on special-interest websites, check e-mail, and play video games.

Addiction Horror Stories

Just how serious are Internet-related addictions? Although most of the addiction horror stories I have encountered pertain to the more “typical” addictions such as drug abuse and alcoholism, other Internet-related dependencies such as “video game addiction” are starting to share the headlines. For instance, there’s various stories circulating the Internet about young teens who play online video games 18 or more hours per day. As disconcerting as this is, the most shocking and disturbing Internet-based addiction story I have ever heard concerns a person who had “forum addiction.” More to the point, in 2005, a 54-year-old male, unable to take a break from his online world, died from starvation. How was this possible you ask? Easy. For 7 weeks before his death, he posted comments into one forum after another every 30 seconds, while refusing to eat.

Should Online Addictive Activities Become Illegal?

Let’s look at the facts. Some Internet users are addicted to blogging, some to forums, and still others to video games. The vast majority of people who go online to post comments on forums, read blogs, or play video games, however, do not get “hooked” on these activities. A similar argument, moreover, can be made for various adult activities such as online sex, porn, gambling. To eliminate the possible danger of addiction to these online activities, should they become illegal?

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