A study, presented to the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association Sunday, found that Net addiction is a rising problem and should be comparable with traditional addictions like alcohol, drugs and gambling.
According to research author Kimberley Young, addictive use of the Internet leads directly to social isolation, depression, family feuds, divorce, financial debt and job losses. 17,000 Net users were asked to express their feelings about the Internet. Questions included 'do you feel preoccupied with the Internet?', 'do you use the Internet as a way of escaping from problems?' and 'do you feel restless, moody, depressed or irritable when attempting to cut down or stop Internet use?'.
It is reported the EU is considering giving Internet addicts the same status as alcoholics and gamblers under new medical guidelines currently under discussion.