Influence of the Internet on Teenagers

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Every person goes through the period of being a teenager which is 13-18 years. This period is often characterized by unstable emotional state and even psychological stresses. During this period young people are shifting from being a child to being an adult person. In addition, a lot of young people try to establish their roles in the society, to understand their feelings and attitudes. This investigation might be accompanied by the feelings of fear, nervousness and vagueness. It is a common knowledge that this period of change is much harder experienced by a female than by a male. The probable reason is the more obvious change in girl’s appearance. That has a negative influence on females’ emotional state of feelings. However, males’ attitude towards this change is rather positive. And the source they are addressing themselves to is internet in most cases. As many other people, teenagers tend to consult the internet in order to help themselves to explain and understand how everything should be and work around them. While addressing to the internet teenagers unconsciously compare themselves and situations in their lives to ones that they see on the screen. And that comparison might work as a source of motivation for the teenagers to change something either in them or around them in order to become successful, meet their life expectations and achieve new goals. Approximately 90 percent of all young people have been online. Teenagers are visiting the web sites of their favorite TV shows, singers, bands, movies, video games, etc. Moreover, they are attracted to the commercial sites, since the web sites are designed in bright colors to be appealing in order to attract teenagers and involve them in interactive games (Dotson, Hyatt, 2005).

Teenagers are also used to shop online. Approximately 37 percent of children under 12 and 67 percent of teenagers are researching and buying products online on a permanent basis. It was estimated that in 2002 children starting from 5 up to 18 spent 1.3 billion dollars on online shopping (Dotson, Hyatt, 2005). Internet has a strong influence on teenagers. This paper is going to explore the influence of the internet on teenagers’ behavior and attitude towards their lifestyle by collecting and presenting the findings of different researchers regarding the influence of the internet on the teenagers. Even though the internet helps the teenagers to become more literate in technological issues, it does a direct influence on their sexual behavior and on their perception and attitude towards the world in general. Even though the Internet has its advantages, it consumes a lot of teenagers’ free time. Thus, less time is remaining for their studies, and they also spend less time communicating with their friends and family. According to the time-displacement theory says that if people start a new activity or start using a new technology, they have to reduce time devoted to the old activities or technologies (Shim, 2007). The study conducted by Shim showed that the Internet use has a direct relationship to the reduction of the desire for face-to-face communication with family and friends. In addition, the findings indicated that the Internet significantly changes the teenagers’ attitude towards the members of their family and friends. The more time teenagers spend online, the less is the desire for spending time with family by finding “an escape in cyberspace” (2007). Thus, teenagers who go online in order to stay away from the face-to-face communication are more likely to have the absence of the desire for the communication with their peers and members of the family. “89% of teens use the Internet at least once per week, and 61% use it daily. Most of the time spent on the Internet is used instant messaging and emailing friends they know from school and other real life locations and activities” (Pyle, 2008). The Internet has also a strong influence on teenagers’ sexual behavior. The Internet has...
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