The present study examined excessive Internet use of Taiwanese adolescents and a psychological aspect of users, sensation seeking, thus to differentiate motivation of Internet dependents and non-dependents. Seven hundred and fifty three Taiwanese high school students were selected using cluster sampling and 88 of them were categorized as Internet dependent users. Results indicated that Internet dependents spent more time on-line than non-dependents. While Internet dependents perceived significantly more negative Internet influences on daily routines, school performance, and parental relation than non-dependents, both Internet dependents and non-dependents viewed Internet use as enhancing peer relations. Making friends through the Internet has become a popular activity among adolescents, potentially leading to its excessive use. Internet dependents scored significantly higher on overall sensation seeking and disinhibition than Internet non-dependents. However, both groups did not differ in the life experience seeking subscale and thrill and adventure seeking subscale. This finding contradicts that of Lavin, Marvin, McLarney, Nola, and Scott [CyberPsychol. Behav. 2 (2000) 425]. Possible reasons for this discrepancy and for the relation between Internet dependence and disinhibition in Taiwanese adolescents are also discussed.
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