It is self-evident for most today to use the Internet every day. Computer games are just as much for the entertainment of young people as movies and TV shows. This is a development that experts believe will increase in the future. Various studies show that as many as three to seven percent of Internet users are considered “online addicts”. How much computer use is normal, what are the dangers and what can be done against online and computer addiction?
So many advantages and pleasant sides of the Internet and computer games have – already today there are a growing number of people who are addicted to the Internet or computer games. No question, virtual worlds offer a high entertainment value. On the Internet, platforms for social contacts such as MySpace, Live journal, Facebook or SchülerVZ connect people from different regions, the remotest patches of the world are “very close”. In chat and in Internet forums one can exchange many different people and establish contacts.
And computer games are fun, otherwise countless types of games would not be offered. But again and again they are also discussed in the media – especially the violence in computer games. However, this is not the only danger emanating from them, because even computer games have a great addictive potential. This is especially true for online games.
Leisure fun Internet
It is not easy to answer how much Internet usage or computer games / gaming is “normal” and when the addiction starts. For many people it is normal to spend several hours a day at the computer. Although this can be problematic, depending on employment, it does not necessarily mean that there is an addiction. Dealing with the Internet can be a hobby, with some people spending more and other people spending less time.
Anyone who has ever taken a liking to a computer or console game, certainly knows the phenomenon: Time flies by – and without you would have noticed, are quickly several hours to. This happens especially often in the first enthusiasm for a new game. This is even more pronounced in online games because these games are played in real time and often in teams. The best-known and most popular game of its kind is probably the online role-playing game “World of War craft”, which is watched by over 11 million players worldwide.
Dive into virtual worlds
Of course, it’s fun to meet people from all over and talk to like-minded people. Whether you’re talking about your favorite show on TV, talking shop with other techies, or maybe sharing tips on pet ownership, the Internet offers just about everyone the right community. It can sometimes be real friendships with people that you would never have met otherwise. Logically, that increases the Internet time and not only adolescents spend hours on the Internet.
This development is not without problems. For some, Internet employment is increasingly replacing other hobbies and “real” contacts with their fellow human beings. So many spend less and less time outside and mainly make virtual friendships – often with people they do not even know personally. More and more people are presenting themselves and their lives on the internet and are creating an “image” in the internet. Especially the possibility of hiding behind the anonymity of the internet and being able to reinvent oneself is irritating many people – and runs the risk of submerging themselves more and more in “unrealistic illusory worlds”. Moreover, with a virtual friend you only know on the internet, you do not know who you really are dealing with.