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Article

Excessive Use of Internet, Mobile Phones and Computers: the Role of Technology-related Changes in Needs and Psychological Boundaries

Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences. 2013. Vol. 86. P. 530-535.
Emelin V., Tkhostov A., Rasskazova E.

In this paper, based on the psychological model of consequences of info-communicational technology use [1] we study the role of two factors – change in needs (the need for development of image making by technology, the need for convenience and functionality) and transformation of psychological boundaries (subjective extension and subjective violation) – in the excessive use of technologies in the normative population (N=254, 17-77 years old). Specifically, we focus on the use of two gadgets (mobile phones and computers) – and one technology (the Internet). Hierarchical regressions were used to predict the two aspects of the excessive use – subjective feeling of dependence and subjective readiness of refusing from technologies. There were different patterns of correlations between age, gender and excessive use for mobiles, the Internet and computer. Frequency of use was unrelated to the excessive use. Psychological factors significantly improved all the models explaining 10-22 percent of the variance in subjective dependence, and 6-25 percent of the variance in readiness of refusing. Both technology-related changes in needs (especially need for “cool”, stylish or expensive gadgets) and psychological boundaries extension affect the excessive use of technologies although the contribution of each factor depends on technology in question. Data allows suggesting possible psychological mechanisms participating in the development of the excessive use of technologies.