Computer Game Addiction

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Computer Gaming Addiction in Adolescents and Young Adults, Solutions for Moderating and Motivating for Success Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. Computer Gaming Addiction Treatment Services computergamingaddiction.com kwoog@wooglabs.com (949) 422-4120 Pepperdine University Associate Director, PRYDE kwoog@pepperdine.edu

Computer Gaming Addiction in Adolescents and Young Adults, Solutions for Moderating and Motivating for Success • • • • • • Background of the problem Theories of Addiction – Recent Science NIDA Theory of Gaming Addiction Assessment and Treatment methods Case Studies Questions

Computers and Interactive Technology

1984 - Personal Computers for business and hobby use

2006 - Too Wired?
(c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. 3

It’s a “Dangerous” World
• Media attention to MySpace and Pedophiles
• News reports of abductions, murders linked to MySpace • Stepped up Law Enforcement Entrapment • “To Catch a Predator…n” Dateline NBC - Perverted-Justice.com

• Larger, Widespread Problem - Excessive Computer Use
• • • • Lowered Academic/Occupational Performance Excess Gaming - Social Isolation, Anxiety, Depression Online socialization: exposure to deviant peers (MySpace) Health problems • Repetitive Stress Injury, obesity, vision problems, sleep

• Family Conflict
(c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. 4

Symptoms of Problematic Computer Gaming
• • • • • • • • • • • • • Does not believe there is a problem (parents have problem) Lies about use - (claims only 20-30 hours, actual 40+) Stays up late, sneaks game play in the middle of the night Has trouble getting up in the morning to go to school Has become isolated, withdrawn from this real world friends Constant arguments, violence (parents, siblings) regarding use Repetitive stress injuries due to excess use Game play has increased steadily over the past year Spends time on-line in researching game related items Admits playing helps improve mood, often irritable otherwise Thinks about playing everyday, plays daily Previously an honor student, now failing classes Parents failed attempts to limit use, removal of computer (c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D.

MMORPG: Addiction Risk
Massively Multi-player On-line Role Playing Game

•Everquest (“Evercrack”) - adults • World of Warcraft (“Warcrack”) •Second Life, Maple Story

Common Patterns Observed
• Increasing game play, starts with a few hours, evolves to most if not all available free time (>25 hours/week) • Baby sitter, low cost entertainment • “At least he is not going out and getting into trouble”

• Increasing social and guild involvement and responsibility to guild members - > play, > rewards (loot) • Raids, increasing participation points

• Weekend play binges - 12hrs+ / day • Decreasing real life social involvement • Play commitments often 7 days a week

• Increasing effort made to manage lifestyle
• Do minimum in school, sports, work, etc. • Work around WOW or other parental controls (c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. 7

Make Love, not Warcraft

Copyright© 2007 Paramount Pictures All Rights Reserved, Reproduced under Fair Use (Title 17: Chapter 1 § 107)

(c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D.

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How Big of a Problem?
• >12 Million subscribers to World of Warcraft alone • Many new games emerging, some targeting younger children • MMORPG Survey (Yee, 2002) Everquest (Sony) • • • • Players report playing 23 hours per week on average. 50% of players self-report being “addicted” 70% report having played 10+ hours straight 18% report playing on-line caused them financial, health, relational or work problems • Younger the player, greater self-report of addiction • Respondents 88% male, 12% female

• On-line limits imposed by government of China
(c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. 9

MMORPG Research 2002

Yee, 2002
(c)2009 Kenneth M. Woog, Psy. D. 10

Iowa State University (2009) National Institute of Media and the Family Survey of Video Game Play • Nationwide Harris Poll Online survey...
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