Опубликован: 08.09.2012 | Доступ: свободный | Студентов: 8904 / 2046 | Длительность: 48:33:00
Специальности: Программист
Лекция 10:

Computer addiction

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3.1. Read the text

Computer Addiction

Obsessively checking e-mail. Playing online games for 12 hours or more at a time. Placing more value on chat-room friends than real friends. Neglecting family, work and even personal health and hygiene. These are all symptoms of a new form of addiction that has surfaced only in recent years: computer addiction.

Creating a single definition for computer addiction is difficult because the term actually covers a wide spectrum of addictions. Few people are literally addicted to a computer as a physical object. They become addicted to activities performed on a computer, like instant messaging, viewing Internet pornography, playing video games, checking e-mail and reading news articles.

Even if someone uses a computer extensively for purely recreational purposes, that doesn't necessarily represent a real addiction any more than someone who spends hours working on a model train set, making quilts or gardening is "addicted" to those activities. Even the agreed-upon definition of addiction itself has evolved over the decades and remains a matter of debate in the medical community. In fact, the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association do not currently consider computer addiction a valid diagnosis, a contro-versy we'll discuss later.

As a result of all these complications, any single definition of computer addiction is necessarily broad and a little vague. If the computer use is so pervasive that it interferes with other life activ-ities, and if the user seems unable to stop using the computer to excess despite negative conse-quences, the problem might be a computer addiction.

Recognizing Computer Addiction

Much of our understanding of computer addiction comes from decades of research on other ad-dictions, like alcoholism or gambling addiction. Psychologists have identified several danger signs for computer addiction. Any of these signs would be a red flag, and multiple signs could mean there's a real problem.

  • Staying on the computer for much longer than intended, or not noticing the passage of time while using the computer
  • Making conscious efforts to cut back on computer time and repeatedly failing
  • Thinking frequently about the computer when not using it or constantly looking forward to the next opportunity to use it
  • Hiding the extent of computer use from family and friends
  • Using the computer as an escape when feeling depressed or stressed
  • Missing events or opportunities or failing at non-computer-related tasks because of time spent on the computer. This could include poor job performance or missing out on family activities.
  • Continued excessive computer use despite incurring negative consequences, such as mar-ital problems or getting in trouble at work due to computer use.
Negative Effects of Computer Addiction

Computer addiction can have a variety of negative effects on a person. The most immediate are social. The user withdraws from friends and family as he spends more and more time on the computer. Relationships begin to wither as the user stops attending social gatherings, skips meet-ings with friends and avoids family members to get more computer time. Even when they do in-teract with their friends, users may become irritable when away from the computer, causing fur-ther social harm.

Eventually, excessive computer use can take an emotional toll. The user gradually withdraws into an artificial world. Constant computer gaming can cause someone to place more emotional value on events within the game than things happening in their real lives. Excessive viewing of Internet pornography can warp a person's ideas about sexuality. Someone whose primary friends are screen names in a chat room may have difficulty with face-to-face interpersonal communica-tion.

Over the long term, computer addiction can cause physical damage. Using a mouse and keyboard for many hours every day can lead to repetitive stress injuries. Back problems are common among people who spent a lot of time sitting at computer desks. Late-night computer sessions cut into much-needed sleep time. Long-term sleep deprivation causes drowsiness, difficulty con-centrating, and depression of the immune system. Someone who spends hours at a computer is obviously not getting any meaningful exercise, so computer addiction can indirectly lead to poor overall physical condition and even obesity.

Eventually, the consequences of computer addiction will ripple through the user's life. Late-night use or use at work will affect job performance, which could lead to job loss. As the addiction takes its toll on family members, it can even lead to failed marriages.

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Наталия Маркелова
Наталия Маркелова
Добрый день, хочу перевестись по этому курсу на обучение с тьютором.будет ли он проверять переводы с русского на английский в части заданий, например, . Translate from Russian into English
Мария Андреева
Мария Андреева

Кстати, да. В лекции 37 курса "Английский язык для ИТ-специалистов" Vocabulary нет совсем!

Berkut Molodoy
Berkut Molodoy
Россия
Олег Ермолаев
Олег Ермолаев
Россия