October 20, 2015 | 1 Comment Internet Addiction and Relationships Have you ever found yourself being so attached to your electronic devices, whether it’s your phone, tablet, laptop or computer? How many hours a day that you spend on social media and sending text messages? Have you ever wonder whether you could be addicted to the Internet without noticing? According to Pew Research Center, ninety percent of American adults own a cell phone and forty-two percent of American adults own a tablet computer. That is not included kids or teenagers. How do Americans use their phone? Eighty-one percent use to send or receive messages, and sixty percent use to access the Internet. Most people today own a smartphone, where the Internet is right on their hands. Applications on smartphones make it easier for people to access the Internet, including social media. Almost every smartphone owner has at least one social media app such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. which means that they upload pictures, information, or just a post online. When you go out with friends or family, either you or at least one people would be “on the Internet”. This tells that people include the Internet as a part of their daily activities. Although Internet has many positive aspects, according Pew Researcher’s survey in 32 emerging and developing nations, overall median said that Internet is a good influence on education (62%), personal relationships (53%) and economy (52%). However, the survey also says that the internet is having negative effect on morality, which is 42% of the people agrees that internet is a bad influence on morality, while only 29% see the internet as a good influence. We live in era where internet is playing a big role in our everyday lives, as more people around the world can gain access to the internet, the opportunity for people to connect, link, share ideas, communicate, and of course building new relationships also increase. On the other hand, the easier people can access the internet, the more people are spending time online. Today, more people use smartphone to access the internet, which means that the internet is right in their hands and people tend to spend time on the internet more. How many people, with smartphones and internet-accessible, spend more time interacting with people face-to-face more than on their phone? People probably spend more time on their phones more than with people, and that might be including you, or someone you know. Well, did you know that spending too much time online can cause you to diagnose Internet Addiction Disorder (IAD), an impulse control disorder. Being addicted can be dangerous and life-changing state. Addiction happens gradually, but often times people are so intrigued with the limitless possibilities available to them on the Internet, they forget about the real life implications these virtual actions can have. People use internet for various reasons, some use internet to express their feelings or emotions through social media and people they talk to online, where they can “be themselves” and spending more than eight hours online is normal to them. This is a real problem that people over look. Internet not only can build online relationships, but it also can ruin relationships, both in person and online relationships. Study has shown that in the past decade, most people who have at least one social media account met new people online more than in person in a year. This means that some of them have relationships online, and they tend to spend most of their time building relationship on the internet than in person. Internet addiction ruins in person relationships by neglecting or spending less time doing activities together. It can also ruin online relationships by exposing privacy or any personal information, which can lead to misunderstanding and breaking ups. Internet Addiction Disorder can be a serious problem that people have but not knowing.