Overuse of the internet is often characterized as problematic, disruptive, or addictive, with stories frequently claiming that online use interferes with relationships, or that 'excessive' time in front of computer screens is unhealthy. The Multiplicities of Internet Addiction contests the claim that computers - specifically Internet use - are addictive, arguing that use of the Internet is now a form of everyday leisure engaged in by many people in Western society. Offering an analysis of the nature of addiction alongside a detailed empirical study of home computer use, this book will be of interest not only to sociologists of culture and popular culture, but also to scholars of media, ICT and education.
Contents: Introduction: addiction: it got your attention; Internet addiction: contrasting viewpoints; When do we say 'too much'? Being cautious about 'over-use' and virtual reality; Technological development and childhood play: the changing nature of everyday leisure; Bordieu's theory of practice; Introducing some teenage technological experts: digital insiders; The blur between leisure, learning and expertise; Internet addiction in the lives of teenagers; New forms of privilege; Misrecognition of the practice of leisure; Conclusion: reframing our gaze on internet addiction; References; Index.