Internet Addiction: Government Policy or Personal Responsibility?

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Internet Addiction: An issue of government policy or a personal responsibility? BIS 421/CSS 411 - Spring 2010 “Why is it drug addicts and computer aficionados are both called users?” – Clifford Stoll Introduction There is no doubt the presence of the internet is increasing at a rapid pace. A Pew Internet and American Life Project study finds two thirds of all Americans use the internet to frequently participate in internet related activities (Fellows, 2008). Another study shows that 55% of all Americans have high speed internet in their homes and even higher among college or academic arenas. (Saville et al, 2010). Needless to say, the possibility of becoming addicted to the internet is now easier than ever. The average American…show more content…
The stories are abundant, yet as Americans, we shrug it off. The “American dream,” difficult to define, yet the implications are astounding. The desire to want a new car, a bigger home, faster this and shinier that, has recently gotten Americans in debt, addicted to consumption, and yes, even dumber. Recent information suggests that the desire to increase ones social status translates into a never ending chase with the Jones’. Were times not simpler in our grandparents or even our parents’ age? Simply, yes, they were simpler; there was less access to consumption, gratification was delayed and technological progress less rapid. To suggest that technological progress and American dissatisfaction complements each other is not far off. Rather, I argue, the dissatisfied, depressed, overweight, addicted American is a direct correlation with the increased presence of the internet. In previous generations we may assume the internet and computing in general was a foreign phenomenon, learning to use such technology would require an entire new skill set. Previous generation than that of the recent generation X and Millennia’s are as author/researcher Marc Prensky calls it “digital immigrants.” Latter generations, namely, the X and Millennia
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