PUBLIC OPINION > Most People Feel Like They're Hooked on the Internet
Living 2012/02/08 14:00:00
There's no going back now. The Internet is now an integral part of contemporary society. Even Wikipedia's blackout, a single website for a single day, created headlines for a week. We depend on the Internet to tell us what the capital of Sri Lanka is, to connect with our friends, to book flights, and -- perhaps most importantly -- to pair pictures with silly phrases and use them in as many contexts as possible. Researchers with the Chicago University's Booth Business School claim it's become so prominent that the urge to check your e-mail might be harder to resist than nicotine and alcohol. We asked SodaHeads if they felt they were addicted to the Internet.
Are You Addicted to the Internet?
63% Are Permanently Plugged In
There was a wide spread of responses, and what one person considered to be an addiction, others were content to dismiss. Does a few hours a day mean you're hooked if you could easily go without it? Some people admit they only check their e-mail, but they feel so compelled it might very well be an addiction of sorts. Whatever you want to call it, most people were comfortable calling it an addiction. Now, whether or not that's a bad thing is still up for debate. Some people seem content to be hooked; others have a problem with it. One respondent wrote, "I really can't get over it. I'm on the swim team and I can't go because I want to stay home and go on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. It's becoming a bad problem."
Women Feel More Addicted
There have been all kinds of studies attempting to show how men and women use the Internet differently. Some suggest men use the Internet more, but women form "deeper connections" with other people. We couldn't tell you if that's true or not, but we can tell you that, according to these results, women are more likely to feel addicted to the web.
Naturally, the addiction runs deeper with young people. Much deeper. Teen respondents were 37% more likely to feel addicted than voters over 45. We suspect that might have something to do with the fact that young people grew up with the Internet, and have it in their pockets at all times.
Smokers Aren't as Concerned
What good would this recap be without a relevant comparison? The research that spawned this question suggested the Internet was as addictive as cigarettes and alcohol, so we wanted to know how smokers and drinkers felt about it. They were less likely to say they felt addicted to the Internet, but a majority of both still admitted that they were.
If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our original poll about Internet addiction. We'd love to hear from you!
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