Distinguishing addiction and high engagement in the context of online game playing

Charlton, John P. and Danforth, Ian D. W. (2007) Distinguishing addiction and high engagement in the context of online game playing. Computers in Human Behavior, 23 (3). pp. 1531-1548. ISSN 0747-5632

[img] PDF

Download (144kB)


This study considered whether the distinction between core and peripheral criteria for behavioral addiction, previously drawn with respect to computing activities in general, applies in the specific area of Massively Multiplayer Online Game playing. Questionnaire items were administered over the Internet to 442 game players. Factor-analysis of the data supported the previous findings for computing in general. An addiction factor loaded on items tapping previously identified core criteria (conflict, withdrawal symptoms, relapse and reinstatement and behavioral salience) and a (non-pathological) engagement factor loaded on items tapping previously identified peripheral criteria (cognitive salience, tolerance and euphoria). Analysis of response frequencies supported the existence of a developmental process whereby peripheral criteria are met before core criteria. Players who might be considered addicted using a monothetic classification system involving only the core criteria were shown to spend a significantly greater amount of time playing per week than those endorsing only the peripheral criteria. It is concluded that the study supports the idea that it is inappropriate to use some of the previously used criteria for addiction when researching or diagnosing computer-related addictions. Implications of the present findings for Internet-mediated data collection methodologies are also discussed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Article originally published in Computers in Human Behavior. © 2005 Elsevier Ltd.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Computer games, impulse control disorders, computer attitudes, taxonomies, Addiction
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: School of Education and Psychology > Psychology
Depositing User: Scott Wilson
Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2013 12:51
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2014 09:49
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.chb.2005.07.002
URI: http://ubir.bolton.ac.uk/id/eprint/364

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics