Frontiers in Cyberpsychology: The Influences of Internet and Online Applications in Daily Life

A special issue of Behavioral Sciences (ISSN 2076-328X). This special issue belongs to the section "Developmental Psychology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2023) | Viewed by 81303

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
School of Psychology, Central China Normal University, Wuhan 430079, China
Interests: personality and social development; cyberpsychology and behavior
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Institute of Social Psychology, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710049, Shaannxi, China
Interests: psychology of internet behavior; social psychology and development; mental health and art therapy

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Guest Editor
School of Psychology, Northeast Normal University, Changchun 130024, China
Interests: parenting, children and adolescent social development; cyberpsychology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In current information technology, Internet and various online applications has been more and more popular. According to the report by the Internet World Stats, by the March 31, 2021, the number of the Internet users throughout the World has reached 5.17 billion, accounting for 65.6% of the population in the World. They provide numerous conveniences to people’s live in many aspects, such as online communication, learning, entertainment and shopping. To some extent, Internet and various online applications have been an indispensable part in our daily lives. Under this background, the influences of Internet and online applications on users’ adaptation has been a focus of researcher, and some important findings has been achieved. However, previous studies mainly focused on some prominent negative phenomenon, such as excessive or problematic Internet use (or defined as Internet addiction). When taking into account the important role and various functions of Internet in our daily life, especially the fact that we couldn’t live without Internet, it’s of great significance to examine the people’ regular use in daily life (this is normal for most users), how to balance the Internet and real life, and the new functions and applications of Internet (e.g., short video applications and live-streaming). This special issue aimed to focus on these issues, research on regular Internet and online applications use (for example, social media, short video applications and live-streaming, online game, online communication, and online learning), from multi-disciplinary perspective and with various methods, are encouraged.

Prof. Dr. Gengfeng Niu
Prof. Dr. Xiaoli Ni
Prof. Dr. Xiaochun Xie
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • cyberpsychology and behavior
  • internet
  • online application (social media, short video applications, and live-streaming)
  • online game
  • online communication
  • daily life
  • adaptation
  • health
  • well-being

Published Papers (27 papers)

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11 pages, 693 KiB  
Article
Parental Phubbing and Adolescent Depressive Symptoms during COVID-19: A Serial Meditating Model
by Wencheng Yang, Lu Tang, Xiangping Shen, Gengfeng Niu, Xiaohan Shi, Siyu Jin, Yumang Zhang and Zihui Yuan
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(5), 371; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13050371 - 30 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2180
Abstract
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, depressive symptoms, a common emotional problem among adolescents, have become more prominent. Regarding the influencing factors of adolescent depressive symptoms, it is widely accepted that parents’ problematic cellphone use around the family (specifically parental phubbing) is a strong [...] Read more.
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, depressive symptoms, a common emotional problem among adolescents, have become more prominent. Regarding the influencing factors of adolescent depressive symptoms, it is widely accepted that parents’ problematic cellphone use around the family (specifically parental phubbing) is a strong predictive factor for the development of depressive symptoms among adolescents. Notably, the COVID-19 pandemic caused a sharp increase in the number of individuals with depressive symptoms, and the negative consequences of parental phubbing and depressive symptoms might have been exacerbated. Accordingly, this study aimed to examine the association between parental phubbing and adolescent depressive symptoms as well as their underlying mechanism. Method: To test our hypotheses, we conducted an offline/online survey with 614 adolescents in Central China from May to June 2022, which corresponded to a period of strict lockdowns in some areas due to the outbreak of the Omicron variant. The participants completed a set of measures, including a technology interference questionnaire, a parent–child relationship scale, a self-concept clarity scale, and the depressive symptoms scale. Results: Parental phubbing was positively associated with adolescent depressive symptoms; the parent–child relationship and self-concept clarity could independently mediate this relationship; and the parent–child relationship and self-concept clarity were also serial mediators in this association. These findings extend previous research by highlighting the impact of parental technology use on their children and the underlying mechanism explaining adolescent depressive symptoms. They provide practical recommendations for parents to prioritize fostering a positive family environment and minimizing phubbing behaviors to enhance adolescent development, particularly in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
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11 pages, 1056 KiB  
Article
Validation of the Perceived Phubbing Scale to the Argentine Context
by Edgardo Etchezahar, Marian Durao, Miguel Ángel Albalá Genol and Mariela Muller
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(2), 192; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13020192 - 20 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2078
Abstract
In recent years, the increased use of mobile devices has changed social dynamics. One such change is the rise of phubbing, described as the behavior of ignoring someone in order to pay attention to one’s cell phone. The purpose of this research was [...] Read more.
In recent years, the increased use of mobile devices has changed social dynamics. One such change is the rise of phubbing, described as the behavior of ignoring someone in order to pay attention to one’s cell phone. The purpose of this research was to validate the Perceived Phubbing Scale (PPS) and examine its relationship with other psychological variables. An Argentine sample was composed of 1608 participants aged between 18 and 65 (M = 45.59; SD 14.03), with 51.6% identifying as female. They were provided with a phubbing scale, along with scales to measure emotional disconnection, fear of missing out (FoMO) and social exclusion, and a sociodemographic questionnaire. The results indicated that the PPS showed an adequate fit to the data, based on a structure of one factor (X2 (20) = 259.353, p < 0.001; CFI = 0.958; IFI = 0.958; RMSEA = 0.089) and the internal consistency (α = 0.93), resulting in a nine-item scale. Participants with high or medium levels of phubbing showed a tendency to suffer FoMO or feel socially excluded or socially isolated. We did not find differences in the levels of phubbing related to the participant’s age, gender, or socioeconomic level. It is possible to conclude that PPS can be used as a reliable measure to evaluate perceived phubbing in Argentina. Implications of the variables studied are discussed as possible predictors of phubbing and are to be considered in its approach. Full article
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21 pages, 1049 KiB  
Article
The Role of CSR Information on Social Media to Promote the Communicative Behavior of Customers: An Emotional Framework Enriching Behavioral Sciences Literature
by Zhijuan Li, Muhammad Safdar Sial, Hualiang Wu, Sorinel Căpușneanu and Cristian-Marian Barbu
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(2), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13020126 - 02 Feb 2023
Viewed by 2128
Abstract
Studies have shown that an organization’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities affect customer behaviors such as loyalty and satisfaction. In spite of this, the role of social media in informing customers about a brand’s CSR activities and in fostering customer advocacy behavior (CADB) [...] Read more.
Studies have shown that an organization’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities affect customer behaviors such as loyalty and satisfaction. In spite of this, the role of social media in informing customers about a brand’s CSR activities and in fostering customer advocacy behavior (CADB) has been underexplored. To fill this knowledge gap, this study investigates the relationship between the CSR-related communication of a banking organization and CADB. This study also examines how emotions such as customer–company identification (CCI) and gratitude as a mediator and a moderator. Using a self-administered questionnaire (n = 302), we collected data from banking customers. Hypotheses were evaluated by using structural equation modeling, which revealed that CSR positively predicts CADB, whereas there are mediating and moderating functions of CCI and GA. Theoretically, this study highlights the role of human emotions in behavior formation from the standpoint of social media. Practically, this study provides important insights for the banking sector’s administrators to realize the important role of CSR communication, using different social networking websites, for converting customers into brand advocates. Full article
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12 pages, 885 KiB  
Article
The Relationship between Paranoid Tendencies and Cyberbullying among Chinese Adolescents: The Mediating Role of Moral Disengagement
by Shuangjia Lin and Bin Xiao
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(2), 102; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13020102 - 26 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2135
Abstract
BACKGROUND: Cyberbullying has become an essential public health psychological issue affecting people’s lives in the online ecology. However, previous studies have rarely examined adolescent paranoia, moral cognition, and cyberbullying in association. Therefore, this study was based on cognitive-behavioral theory to investigate the relationship [...] Read more.
BACKGROUND: Cyberbullying has become an essential public health psychological issue affecting people’s lives in the online ecology. However, previous studies have rarely examined adolescent paranoia, moral cognition, and cyberbullying in association. Therefore, this study was based on cognitive-behavioral theory to investigate the relationship between child-like paranoid tendencies, cyberbullying, and moral disengagement. METHODS: This study used the Paranoia Scale, Cyberbullying Scale, and Moral Disengagement Scale to conduct an anonymous online survey of 1519 adolescents in China. RESULTS: (1) Paranoid tendencies, moral disengagement, and cyberbullying were all significantly and positively correlated. Boys showed higher rates of moral disengagement, while girls showed higher rates of paranoid tendencies. (2) The direct effect of paranoid tendency on cyberbullying was significant (β = 0.31, p < 0.01). (3) There was a mediating effect of moral disengagement in the influence of paranoid tendencies on cyberbullying, with an effect proportion of 20.5%. CONCLUSION: Adolescent cyberbullying should be regulated at the family and social levels to enhance juvenile mental health issues and help them establish proper moral standards. Full article
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11 pages, 603 KiB  
Article
Using Social Media for Social Motives Moderates the Relationship between Post-Traumatic Symptoms during a COVID-19-Related Lockdown and Improvement of Distress after Lockdown
by Giulia Buodo, Tania Moretta, Vieri Giuliano Santucci, Shubao Chen and Marc N. Potenza
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(1), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13010053 - 06 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2266
Abstract
Previous research reported inconsistent results on the relationship between social media (SM) use and psychological well-being, suggesting the importance of assessing possible moderators, e.g., motives for SM use. However, no longitudinal study has yet investigated whether, among people who use SM, specific motives [...] Read more.
Previous research reported inconsistent results on the relationship between social media (SM) use and psychological well-being, suggesting the importance of assessing possible moderators, e.g., motives for SM use. However, no longitudinal study has yet investigated whether, among people who use SM, specific motives for using SM may represent protective/risk factors for the development of psychological distress, especially after a stressful event. Our longitudinal study aimed at assessing the moderating role of motives for using SM (i.e., coping, conformity, enhancement, social motives) in the relationship between COVID-19 pandemic-related post-traumatic stress symptoms during the lockdown and changes in general distress after lockdown. At Time 1 (during the first lockdown in Italy), 660 participants responded to an online survey, reporting their post-traumatic symptoms, motives for using SM, and general distress (i.e., anxiety, depression, and stress symptoms). At Time 2 (three months later, following lockdown), 117 participants volunteered to continue with the follow-up survey assessing general distress symptoms again. Results showed that among those who had experienced more severe post-traumatic symptoms at Time 1, using SM for social motives was associated with more improvement of general distress symptoms. No evidence was found of moderating effects of other motives for SM use. The findings suggest that social connections may have helped to cope with stress during forced confinement, and that SM use may be beneficial for mental health when motivated by maintaining social interactions. Full article
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14 pages, 950 KiB  
Article
What Do You Think of AI? Research on the Influence of AI News Anchor Image on Watching Intention
by Ke Xue, Yifei Li and Hanqing Jin
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 465; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110465 - 21 Nov 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 5760
Abstract
Since the concept of artificial intelligence was introduced in 1956, AI technology has been gradually applied in various fields, including journalism. This paper focuses on research related to AI news anchors, and two correlated experiments are applied to examine audiences’ perceived attractiveness of [...] Read more.
Since the concept of artificial intelligence was introduced in 1956, AI technology has been gradually applied in various fields, including journalism. This paper focuses on research related to AI news anchors, and two correlated experiments are applied to examine audiences’ perceived attractiveness of AI news anchors from a psychological dimension. Study 1 focuses on the different variables that influence the behavioral willingness of AI news anchor viewers, while Study 2 focuses on the mediating and moderating variables that influence audiences’ psychological changes. The results indicate that non-humanoid female AI news anchors who use anthropomorphic voices to broadcast news obtain the highest perceived attractiveness among audiences. Additionally, the mediating effect of perceived attractiveness and the negative moderating effect on the inherent impression of traditional news anchors are both verified in the study. Based on the research findings, the implications and suggestions are addressed accordingly. Full article
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19 pages, 1043 KiB  
Article
Effects of Personality Traits Concerning Media Use Decisions on Fear of Missing Out and Social Media Use Behavior
by Sheng-Cheng Lin and Er-Ting Jian
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 460; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110460 - 18 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3138
Abstract
We could view the phenomenon of fear of missing out (FoMO) as a dilemma of too many choices about social media. Although there are already various studies on FoMO, there is still a lack of studies on what personality traits concerning media use [...] Read more.
We could view the phenomenon of fear of missing out (FoMO) as a dilemma of too many choices about social media. Although there are already various studies on FoMO, there is still a lack of studies on what personality traits concerning media use decisions will contribute to FoMO or how FoMO mediates these personality traits and people’s social media use behavior, and, thus, corresponding negative emotions. This study explored the causes of FoMO in a FoMO moderated mediation model using maximizing tendency before the choice was made, social comparison orientation when making choices, and regrets tendency after the choice was made. The results showed that (1) there is a non-significant influence between maximizing tendency and FoMO, (2) regret tendency is a positive influence on FoMO, (3) social comparison orientation is a positive influence on FoMO, (4) FoMO is a positive influence on the compulsive use of social media and surveillance use of social media, (5) FoMO exhibited a full mediating effect on the relationship between regret tendency and social media surveillance use, (6) FoMO exhibited a full mediating effect on the relationship between social comparison orientation and social media compulsive use. Full article
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10 pages, 970 KiB  
Article
Boredom Proneness and Online Deviant Behaviors: The Mediating Role of Rumination and the Moderating Role of Gender
by Jing Zhao, Shisheng Chen, Xiaochun Xie, Jin Wang and Xiaodong Wang
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 455; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110455 - 16 Nov 2022
Viewed by 1893
Abstract
Online deviant behaviors have received increasing attention. This study examined the association between boredom proneness and online deviant behaviors as well as the mediating role of rumination and the moderating role of gender in the relationship. A sample of 1001 college students (Mage [...] Read more.
Online deviant behaviors have received increasing attention. This study examined the association between boredom proneness and online deviant behaviors as well as the mediating role of rumination and the moderating role of gender in the relationship. A sample of 1001 college students (Mage = 20.20 ± 1.52 years, 50.25% female) was recruited to complete a set of questionnaires assessing the main variables. The results show that boredom proneness was positively associated with online deviant behaviors and that rumination played a mediating role in this relationship. Moreover, gender differences were found in the relationship, which was stronger for males than females. Despite several limitations, this study deepens our understanding of the influencing mechanism of boredom proneness on online deviant behaviors, which could provide practical implications for the prevention and intervention of online deviant behaviors. Full article
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15 pages, 751 KiB  
Article
Relationships among Problematic Smartphone Use, Mathematics Achievement, Teacher–Student Relationships, and Subjective Well-Being: Results from a Large-Scale Survey in China
by Da Zhou, Jinqing Liu, Guizhen Ye, Ting Wang, Xiaogang Xia and Jian Liu
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 454; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110454 - 16 Nov 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1930
Abstract
This study examined the mediating role of mathematics performance and the moderating role of teacher–student relationships on the effects of problematic smartphone use on students’ subjective well-being. Through probability proportionate to size sampling (PPS), a total of 20,321 fourth graders from a city [...] Read more.
This study examined the mediating role of mathematics performance and the moderating role of teacher–student relationships on the effects of problematic smartphone use on students’ subjective well-being. Through probability proportionate to size sampling (PPS), a total of 20,321 fourth graders from a city in central China were invited to complete a paper-based mathematics achievement test and an online questionnaire survey, including demographic information, problematic smartphone use, subjective well-being, and teacher–student relationship scales. The results showed that: after controlling for SES and gender, (1) problematic smartphone use had a direct and negative effect on students’ subjective well-being; (2) mathematics performance partially mediated the effects of problematic smartphone use on students’ subjective well-being; (3) teacher–student relationships moderated the effects of problematic smartphone use on mathematics performance/students’ subjective well-being; (4) with the increase in problematic smartphone use, high teacher–student relationships produced a lower rate of the positive moderating effect than low teacher–student relationships. The implications of this study and suggestions for future research are discussed. Full article
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24 pages, 552 KiB  
Article
Does the Internet Bring People Closer Together or Further Apart? The Impact of Internet Usage on Interpersonal Communications
by Chao Li, Guangjie Ning, Yuxin Xia, Kaiyi Guo and Qianqian Liu
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 425; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110425 - 31 Oct 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 11308
Abstract
The complementarity interference (CI) model suggests that the Internet may either inhibit or facilitate interpersonal communications. This paper empirically examines the impact of Internet usage on interpersonal interactions, using a micro dataset from China to answer whether the Internet brings people closer together [...] Read more.
The complementarity interference (CI) model suggests that the Internet may either inhibit or facilitate interpersonal communications. This paper empirically examines the impact of Internet usage on interpersonal interactions, using a micro dataset from China to answer whether the Internet brings people closer together or further apart. The empirical results demonstrate, first, that Internet usage significantly increases both the time and frequency of people’s communications with their family and friends, rather than causing them to feel more disconnected and isolated. Holding other factors constant, for each one-standard-deviation increase in Internet usage, weekly communications with family members increases by an average of 102.150 min, while there is an average increase of 54.838 min in interactions with friends. These findings as to its positive effects are robust when using other regression models and interpersonal contact measures, as well as the instrumental variable method. Second, Internet usage also contributes to decreased loneliness; it exerts this effect primarily by improving people’s interactions with their family members. However, communications with friends do not significantly mediate such impacts. Third, the positive role of Internet usage on communications is more prominent for people with more frequent online socialization and self-presentation, better online skills, younger age, higher educational level, and who are living in urban areas. In addition, the beneficial effects of Internet usage are larger for communications with family members in the case of migrants. Therefore, in the context of the rapid development of information technology, the network infrastructure should be improved to make better use of the Internet to facilitate interpersonal communications and promote people’s wellness. Full article
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13 pages, 450 KiB  
Article
Boosting eWOM through Social Media Brand Page Engagement: The Mediating Role of Self-Brand Connection
by Ovidiu-Ioan Moisescu, Oana-Adriana Gică and Flavia-Andreea Herle
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(11), 411; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12110411 - 26 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2315
Abstract
The present study’s objective is to investigate the influence of active and passive social media brand page engagement on eWOM, via self-brand connection. To accomplish this objective, an online survey was conducted among a sample of Facebook users from Romania, Facebook being the [...] Read more.
The present study’s objective is to investigate the influence of active and passive social media brand page engagement on eWOM, via self-brand connection. To accomplish this objective, an online survey was conducted among a sample of Facebook users from Romania, Facebook being the most popular social network worldwide, and Romania being an adequate representation of a European developing country. To assess the proposed research model, we used partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM). Our results show that social media brand page engagement, either passive or active, has a positive impact eWOM, both directly and indirectly, via self-brand connection. Additionally, our research reveals that the two types of social media brand page engagement generate eWOM distinctly: although passive engagement has a considerably stronger direct influence on self-brand connection, active engagement is equally influential for both self-brand connection and eWOM. However, due to the mediating role of self-brand connection, the total effect on eWOM is relatively equal for both passive and active engagement. The research provides practical implications for social media marketers, emphasizing the importance of increasing consumers’ engagement with social media brand pages for generating eWOM and, consequently, to attract new customers and to reinforce brand loyalty for existing ones. Full article
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27 pages, 4648 KiB  
Article
“A Streetcar Named Instagram Desire”: Evolutionary Psychological Perspectives on the Multifarious Human Desires That Shape Instagram Selfie-and-Groupfie Cultures
by S. Venus Jin and Ehri Ryu
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 396; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12100396 - 17 Oct 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2795
Abstract
Instagram not only offers an arena for the fulfillment of basic human desires but also cultivates new types of multifaceted desires and consumptions in Web 2.0 environments. This study aims to examine a wide variety of dispositional, psychological, and attitudinal predictors of Instagram [...] Read more.
Instagram not only offers an arena for the fulfillment of basic human desires but also cultivates new types of multifaceted desires and consumptions in Web 2.0 environments. This study aims to examine a wide variety of dispositional, psychological, and attitudinal predictors of Instagram consumption and selfie-and-groupfie cultures. Three cross-sectional surveys (Study 1 (N = 108); Study 2 (N = 140); Study 3 (N = 557)) were conducted, and empirical data were analyzed using structural equation modeling (SEM) with Mplus 8.0. Study 1 shows associations among appearance-related self-confidence, appearance-related actual–ideal self-discrepancy, materialism, and Instagram consumption. Study 2 confirms relationships among weight status perception, self-esteem, eating disorder, malicious envy, and Instagram consumption intensity. Study 3 further demonstrates dynamic associations among eating disorders, perceived mate value, narcissistic grandiosity, envy, social comparison, intrasexual competition for mates, and frequency of posting selfies/groupfies on Instagram. Theoretical contributions to the psychosocial and human aspects of the Web 2.0 digital culture, managerial implications for online dating cultures, and practical implications for consumption markets including social media-based health communication, cultural communication, and marketing communication are discussed. Full article
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19 pages, 586 KiB  
Article
Does Internet Entertainment Reduce the Cognitive Ability of Children? Evidence from the China Education Panel Survey
by Wenxin Hu, Yufei Mao, Kevin Huang and Yanqi Sun
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12100364 - 27 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2348
Abstract
Internet technology has been assimilated into children’s educational system on an in-depth level. In particular, the number of children who use the internet for entertainment has been rapidly increasing. However, there has been a debate as to whether internet entertainment can have a [...] Read more.
Internet technology has been assimilated into children’s educational system on an in-depth level. In particular, the number of children who use the internet for entertainment has been rapidly increasing. However, there has been a debate as to whether internet entertainment can have a detrimental impact on children’s cognitive ability. This paper investigates the effect of internet entertainment on the cognitive ability of children in the Chinese context. The results show no evidence of associations between internet entertainment and children’s cognitive ability. However, the additional analysis provides preliminary evidence suggesting that internet entertainment can be beneficial to children who use it for entertainment only on weekends but detrimental for those who spend leisure time online daily. In addition, the findings are robust in a variety of sensitivity tests. We also examine whether the effects of internet entertainment on children’s cognitive ability in different family environments are heterogeneous. The findings suggest that parents’ internet habits, parents’ internet supervision, parental relationship, family education and living area play a moderating role in the relationship between internet entertainment and children’s cognitive ability. This study offers useful insights into the current global debate on the nexus between internet entertainment and children’s cognitive ability and also provides suggestions for parents, children, regulators and policymakers. Full article
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13 pages, 449 KiB  
Article
Association between WeChat Use and Memory Performance among Older Adults in China: The Mediating Role of Depression
by Zhiya Hua and Fangling Wang
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(9), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12090323 - 06 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2227
Abstract
Changes to memory performance in the course of aging may be influenced by behavioral factors. The use of social media among elderly people is increasing, but studying its effect on cognitive functions such as memory remains at an early stage of development. Meanwhile, [...] Read more.
Changes to memory performance in the course of aging may be influenced by behavioral factors. The use of social media among elderly people is increasing, but studying its effect on cognitive functions such as memory remains at an early stage of development. Meanwhile, the linking mechanisms underlying the association between social media use and memory performance, if any exist, have not been revealed. This study attempted to examine the association between the use of WeChat, the most popular social media platform in China, and memory performance among older people, and to test the possible mediating role of depression underlying this association. Data were drawn from the five-wave survey of the China Family Panel Study (CFPS), and 4929 respondents aged 60 or older (mean age = 68.19, SD = 5.84, 48.2% females) were included. Based on the descriptive statistics, the chi-squared test, Student’s t-test, correlation analysis, and mediation analysis were conducted. The results indicated that the usage rate of WeChat among the sample was 20.1%. After controlling for demographic variables, the use of WeChat was related to higher levels of memory performance and lower levels of depression. Moreover, depression partially mediated the relationship between WeChat use and memory performance. To maintain memory performance and promote cognitive health in the course of aging, using social media and alleviating depression merit special attention. Full article
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10 pages, 258 KiB  
Article
The Association between Video Game Type and Aggressive Behaviors in Saudi Youth: A Pilot Study
by Majid A. Aleissa, Shuliweeh Alenezi, Hassan N. Saleheen, Sumayyah R. Bin Talib, Altaf H. Khan, Shatha A. Altassan and Ahmed S. Alyahya
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(8), 289; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12080289 - 15 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3381 | Correction
Abstract
Video gaming is a popular source of entertainment among children and adolescents. Although the Middle East is home to one of the fastest growing communities of video game users, most of the research established on this topic has been carried out through small [...] Read more.
Video gaming is a popular source of entertainment among children and adolescents. Although the Middle East is home to one of the fastest growing communities of video game users, most of the research established on this topic has been carried out through small scale studies. Our aim in this study is to assess the prevalence of video game use and its association with aggressive behaviors among adolescents in Saudi Arabia. This is a cross-sectional study involving boys and girls (aged 15–18 years) in both private and public secondary high schools in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Each participant completed a self-administered modified version of the aggression questionnaire, which consisted of 29 items scored on a 5-point Likert scale. This questionnaire assessed aggressive behaviors domains: physical aggression, anger, hostility, and verbal aggression and types of videogames and time of use. A total of 485 students were included in this study. The mean age of participants was 16.5 ± 0.9 years; 48% were boys. Adolescents who participated in action games had higher mean verbal (p < 0.01) and physical aggression (p < 0.01) scores. Adventure game players had significantly higher mean scores in all four types of aggressive behavior (p < 0.01). Participants who played simulation games had higher mean verbal aggressiveness (p < 0.01). Adolescents who participated in sports games had greater mean levels of anger (p = 0.01) and physical aggression (p = 0.01). Those who played strategy/puzzle games reported significantly higher mean scores of anger (p < 0.01), hostility (p = 0.01), and verbal aggression (p = 0.01). Females were more likely to show higher mean anger (p < 0.01) scores, whereas males were more likely to show higher mean physical aggression scores (p < 0.01). Conclusions: Our results do suggest that playing video games increases adolescent aggressive behaviors, which has been supported by other studies. We recommend educating parents on the pros and cons of playing video games and that parents schedule and limit the time their children spend playing video games. Full article
13 pages, 1108 KiB  
Article
Photo Activity on Social Networking Sites and Body Dissatisfaction: The Roles of Thin-Ideal Internalization and Body Appreciation
by Changying Duan, Shuailei Lian, Li Yu, Gengfeng Niu and Xiaojun Sun
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(8), 280; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12080280 - 11 Aug 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3483
Abstract
Objective: According to sociocultural theory, media is associated with detrimental effects on body image. Due to the popularity of social networking sites (SNS) and the prevalence of body image disturbance among young women, the association between them is worth further exploration. This study [...] Read more.
Objective: According to sociocultural theory, media is associated with detrimental effects on body image. Due to the popularity of social networking sites (SNS) and the prevalence of body image disturbance among young women, the association between them is worth further exploration. This study examined the relationship between photo activity on SNS and body dissatisfaction (BD) and the roles of thin-ideal internalization (TII) and body appreciation (BA) in this relation. Materials and Methods: A total of 746 Chinese female undergraduate students (mean age 20.34 ± 1.47 years) completed a questionnaire measuring SNS photo activity, TII, BD, and BA. Results: (1) Photo activity on SNS was positively associated with BD (r = 0.10, p < 0.01), and TII could mediate this relation (β = 0.07, 95% CI = [0.04, 0.10]). (2) Both the direct effect of SNS photo activity on BD (β = −0.08, p < 0.05) and the mediating effect of TII (β = −0.09, p < 0.01) were moderated by BA. Specifically, these associations were more pronounced for students with lower BA. Conclusion: People exposed to ideal photos or images can shape women’s body image perception via TII, whether in the age of traditional media or the Internet, and BA did not buffer the effect of ideal photos on internalization. Our findings could provide practical suggestions for rational photo activity on SNS and the intervention for BD. Full article
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14 pages, 590 KiB  
Article
Social Media Exposure and Left-behind Children’s Tobacco and Alcohol Use: The Roles of Deviant Peer Affiliation and Parent–Child Contact
by Li Wu, Liangshuang Yao and Yuanxiang Guo
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(8), 275; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12080275 - 08 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2741
Abstract
The public has always been concerned about the problem behaviors of children and teenagers (such as cigarette and alcohol use), especially among disadvantaged groups (e.g., left-behind children in China); in the current information era, left-behind children’s use of social media also has increasingly [...] Read more.
The public has always been concerned about the problem behaviors of children and teenagers (such as cigarette and alcohol use), especially among disadvantaged groups (e.g., left-behind children in China); in the current information era, left-behind children’s use of social media also has increasingly expanded, which has diverse effects on their adaptation. Accordingly, the present study examined the association between exposure to relevant content on social media and left-behind children’s tobacco and alcohol use, as well as the underlying mechanisms—the mediating effect of deviant peer affiliation and the moderating effect of parent–child contact, the gender differences were also investigated. A sample of 515 Chinese left-behind children (Mage = 13.39 ± 2.52 years, 45.0% girls) was recruited to complete a set of questionnaires assessing the main variables. The results show that social media exposure was positively associated with tobacco and alcohol use and that deviant peer affiliation significantly mediated this relationship. Furthermore, parent–child interaction attenuated the link between social media exposure and cigarette and alcohol use among left-behind girls, but this moderating effect was not statistically significant among left-behind boys. The moderating role of parent–child contact in the association between deviant peer affiliation and tobacco and alcohol use was insignificant in both boys and girls. These findings may have significance in several ways—theoretically, they not only deepen our understanding of the risk factors and mechanism of tobacco and alcohol use among left-behind children in the current information era and the influences of social media use; practically, they provide direction for the health improvement of left-behind children of different genders. Full article
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18 pages, 1147 KiB  
Article
A Qualitative Research on Usage Intention and Platform Swinging Behavior of Anonymous Social Applications “Soul”
by Xiaoxiao Song and Zhiyuan Yu
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 230; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12070230 - 13 Jul 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2493
Abstract
By iheriting online natural properties, anonymous social media (ASM) applications have become popular and have attracted large amounts of mobile users (e.g., the youth) who can construct new identities for role-play and show themselves in anonymous ways. In order to investigate the influencing [...] Read more.
By iheriting online natural properties, anonymous social media (ASM) applications have become popular and have attracted large amounts of mobile users (e.g., the youth) who can construct new identities for role-play and show themselves in anonymous ways. In order to investigate the influencing factors toward usage intention (UI) and platform swinging (PS) behavior among anonymous social applications, we choose one of the most active ASM App “Soul” as the example in China and then conducte a semi-structured interview with 23 valid Soul users using qualitative methods. The results show that the factors, i.e., perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, perceived privacy riskiness, perceived anonymity, subjective norms, emotional attachments, and perceived interactivity, indeed affect UI among Soul users via online communication. Moreover, we find that PS behavior is ubiquitous among interviewees and mainly depends on diversified needs, which consist of nine dimensions including different position and function among apps, usage comparison, friend migration, etc. Nearly 80% of interviewees believe that there exists a relationship between UI and PS, which can be described as a inverted U-shaped curve, i.e., the higher or lower UI, the less probability of PS. For the individuals’ social media usage behavior, a closed loop “Attitude–Intention–Behavior” is summarized. By conducting qualitative research, we intend to provide some insights and deepen the understanding of UI among ASM users in daily life. Full article
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12 pages, 669 KiB  
Article
Associations between Mobile Internet Use and Self-Rated and Mental Health of the Chinese Population: Evidence from China Family Panel Studies 2020
by Haifeng Ding, Chengsu Zhang and Wan Xiong
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 221; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12070221 - 01 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2049
Abstract
With societal and technological developments, mobile Internet has become the most popular and widespread means to use the Internet in China. Thus, exploring the relationship between mobile Internet use and the self-rated health and mental health of the Chinese population is of great [...] Read more.
With societal and technological developments, mobile Internet has become the most popular and widespread means to use the Internet in China. Thus, exploring the relationship between mobile Internet use and the self-rated health and mental health of the Chinese population is of great importance. This study empirically examined the impact of mobile Internet use on residents’ health using data from the China Family Panel Studies 2020 and conducted a heterogeneity analysis. The results revealed a significant negative association between mobile Internet use and the self-rated health of the population, but a significant positive association was found relative to their mental health. The results of this analysis passed a robustness test. The results of the heterogeneity analysis showed that mobile Internet use had a more significant association with the health of residents with secondary school education and university education compared to those with primary school education or below and graduate education. Furthermore, this study addresses the endogeneity problem using the propensity-score matching model, which is shown to be better at eliminating sample selectivity bias. If endogeneity is not addressed, the negative association with mobile Internet use on residents’ self-rated health will be underestimated and its positive association with their mental health will be overestimated. The Chinese government should issue guidelines on the duration of Internet use, strictly regulate exaggerated and harmful content on mobile network platforms, and strengthen people’s online skills through training to improve their digital literacy, especially for rural populations. Full article
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24 pages, 860 KiB  
Article
Examining the Intention of Authorization via Apps: Personality Traits and Expanded Privacy Calculus Perspectives
by Jie Tang, Bin Zhang and Shuochen Xiao
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 218; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12070218 - 29 Jun 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2754
Abstract
By integrating the extended privacy calculus theory with the Big Five personality theory, this research proposes and validates a conceptual model in the context of mobile application (App) information authorization. It investigates the implications of each component of privacy costs, privacy advantages, and [...] Read more.
By integrating the extended privacy calculus theory with the Big Five personality theory, this research proposes and validates a conceptual model in the context of mobile application (App) information authorization. It investigates the implications of each component of privacy costs, privacy advantages, and trust on users’ willingness to authorize their information, and explores how the five personality traits affect App users’ perceived benefits, privacy concern, and trust. Simultaneously, the links between prior negative experience and privacy concern as well as the final authorizing willingness were uncovered. We employed a questionnaire to collect 455 users’ data, and the partial least squares structural equation model (PLS-SEM) was used to test the hypotheses. The findings demonstrate that App users’ perceived benefits and trust have a positive impact on their privacy authorization intention, whereas privacy concerns negatively affect their disclosure willingness. Just as Extraversion and Agreeableness would make someone pay a heightened attention to the benefits, agreeable, neurotic, and conscientious users are more easily stimulated by privacy concern. Respectively, Agreeableness and Neuroticism affect users’ trust positively and negatively. Additionally, prior negative experience will trigger an individual’s privacy concern, which in turn hinders their willingness to authorize his/her information. All of the aforementioned can serve as a guide for App providers as they optimize the features of their products and services, implement the necessary privacy protections to alleviate users’ privacy concern, and boost users’ trust belief. More importantly, these results effectively demonstrate the significance of personal traits in the formation of users’ privacy perceptions. Full article
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8 pages, 1441 KiB  
Article
Online Interpersonal Sexual Objectification Experiences and Teenage Girls’ Self-Objectification: The Role of Broad Conceptualization of Beauty
by Sen Lin, Liming Li and Libiao Jiang
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 210; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12070210 - 24 Jun 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2367
Abstract
Self-objectification is a common and deleterious phenomenon among young teenage girls, for which interpersonal sexual objectification experiences are a great risk; in the current information era, sexual objectification experiences may also expand into the online space. Based on this, this study aimed to [...] Read more.
Self-objectification is a common and deleterious phenomenon among young teenage girls, for which interpersonal sexual objectification experiences are a great risk; in the current information era, sexual objectification experiences may also expand into the online space. Based on this, this study aimed to examine the association between online interpersonal sexual objectification (OISO) experiences and teenage girls’ self-objectification, as well as the potential moderating role of broad conceptualization of beauty in relation to this. Seven hundred and seventy-one female undergraduate students were recruited voluntarily to complete questionnaires on OISO experiences, self-objectification, and the broad conceptualization of beauty. Results indicated that OISO experiences were positively associated with teenage girls; self-objectification and the broad conceptualization of beauty could significantly buffer this relation, which was weakened among individuals with a high level of broad conceptualization of beauty. This study expands previous research on sexual objectification, providing practical significance for promoting the well-being of teenage girls. Full article
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20 pages, 2790 KiB  
Article
Influence of Country Digitization Level on Digital Pandemic Stress
by Álvaro Antón-Sancho, Diego Vergara and Pablo Fernández-Arias
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(7), 203; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12070203 - 22 Jun 2022
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2533
Abstract
A quick and effective solution to address the immediate change in teaching methods after the COVID-19 pandemic was digital learning environments (DLEs). The way in which this process of change towards DLEs was tackled was different around the world, depending on multiple factors, [...] Read more.
A quick and effective solution to address the immediate change in teaching methods after the COVID-19 pandemic was digital learning environments (DLEs). The way in which this process of change towards DLEs was tackled was different around the world, depending on multiple factors, including the level of digitization, technology, and innovation. This paper conducts quantitative research on the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on the adaptation of university professors to DLEs. In order to achieve this objective, a sample of 723 university professors from 15 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean was taken. The participants’ self-perception of the stress generated and their levels of digital competence during the COVID-19 pandemic were studied according to the Global Innovation Index (GII) of their country of origin. The results show that professors have an intermediate–high self-perception of both their digital competence and their ability to adapt to DLEs. It is also shown that neither the professors’ level of digital competence nor the GII of the country of origin fully explain the level of pandemic stress regarding the use of DLEs. This fact suggests that there must be other influential factors to consider, thus opening new lines of future research. Full article
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13 pages, 932 KiB  
Article
Rich Get Richer: Extraversion Statistically Predicts Reduced Internet Addiction through Less Online Anonymity Preference and Extraversion Compensation
by Shaozhen Zhang, Wenliang Su, Xiaoli Han and Marc N. Potenza
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(6), 193; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12060193 - 16 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2319
Abstract
Internet addiction may arise from multiple factors and personality tendencies have been previously implicated. Prior studies have found that extraversion may be a protective factor mitigating against internet addiction, yielding a “rich-get-richer” effect. However, few studies have explored how extraversion may influence internet [...] Read more.
Internet addiction may arise from multiple factors and personality tendencies have been previously implicated. Prior studies have found that extraversion may be a protective factor mitigating against internet addiction, yielding a “rich-get-richer” effect. However, few studies have explored how extraversion may influence internet addiction from the perspective of online-offline integration. Drawing on a sample of 428 college students, the current study examined a serial mediation model exploring the underlying mechanisms of how extraversion may statistically predict internet addiction through online-offline integration and antecedent factors. The serial mediation model analyses indicated that extraverted internet users exhibited a weaker preference for online anonymity and less online extraversion compensation, thus formulating a higher level of online-offline integration than introverted individuals, which, in turn, appeared to reduce the risk of internet addiction. In contrast, with regard to specific components of online-offline integration, introverted internet users preferred online anonymity, which reduced their relationship integration and increased their likelihood of internet addiction; similarly, the introverted individuals were also more likely to exhibit an extraversion compensation effect. That is, they were more extraverted on the internet than in general; hence, they had a lower level of self-identity integration, resulting in a greater likelihood of experiencing internet addiction. These results highlight the importance of online-offline integration that may account for personality variations in social and psychological outcomes related to internet use, and suggest a role for online anonymity preference and extraversion compensation in influencing specific components of integration. Full article
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13 pages, 548 KiB  
Article
Personality Traits of Croatian University Students with Internet Addiction
by Ivan Miskulin, Ivana Simic, Nika Pavlovic, Jelena Kovacevic, Ivica Fotez, Goran Kondza, Hrvoje Palenkic, Vesna Bilic-Kirin, Marinela Kristic and Maja Miskulin
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(6), 173; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12060173 - 01 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2830
Abstract
Specific personality traits may predispose individuals to various forms of addictive behaviors. This study aimed to investigate the association between personality traits of university students and Internet addiction (IA). A sample of 1051 university students was recruited from the largest university in Eastern [...] Read more.
Specific personality traits may predispose individuals to various forms of addictive behaviors. This study aimed to investigate the association between personality traits of university students and Internet addiction (IA). A sample of 1051 university students was recruited from the largest university in Eastern Croatia. A structured anonymous questionnaire that included questions regarding students’ sociodemographic information and Internet usage patterns, the Young Internet Addiction Test and Big Five Inventory served as a research tool. The study revealed that 1.0% of the studied sample expressed severe IA while 24.6% of study participants expressed some signs of addiction. The IA was detected in 576 (80.0%) students who used the Internet mainly for social networking, in 30 (78.9%) students who mainly used it for online gaming, and in 153 (52.2%) students who mainly used it for university assignments (p < 0.001). Higher neuroticism, higher extraversion, and higher openness to new experiences were connected with IA in general (p < 0.001). Higher neuroticism, higher extraversion, and higher openness to new experiences were significantly associated with addictive behavior during social networking (p < 0.001). Higher extraversion and higher openness to new experiences were significantly associated with addictive behavior during Internet usage for university assignments (p = 0.025), while there were no significant associations between specific personality traits and addictive behavior during online gaming (p = 0.059). Personality traits must be taken into account while developing programs and implementing interventions for preventing IA in the university student population. Full article
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11 pages, 453 KiB  
Article
Machiavellianism and Gift-Giving in Live Video Streaming: The Mediating Role of Desire for Control and the Moderating Role of Materialism
by Gengfeng Niu, Xiaohan Shi, Siyu Jin, Wencheng Yang, Yang Wu and Xiaojun Sun
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(5), 157; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12050157 - 21 May 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2271
Abstract
This study aimed to examine the association between Machiavellianism and gift-giving in live video streaming, as well as the mediating role of desire for control and the moderating role of materialism in this relation. A sample of 212 undergraduate students (146 males; the [...] Read more.
This study aimed to examine the association between Machiavellianism and gift-giving in live video streaming, as well as the mediating role of desire for control and the moderating role of materialism in this relation. A sample of 212 undergraduate students (146 males; the average age was 19.80 ± 2.05 years old) with experience of gift-giving in live video streaming was recruited to complete questionnaires on Machiavellianism, desire for control, materialism, and the frequency of gift-giving in live video streaming. The results showed that Machiavellianism was positively associated with gift-giving in live video streaming through the mediating role of desire for control; and the mediating effect of desire for control was moderated by materialism, with this relation being stronger for individuals with a higher level of materialism. Though with several limitations (e.g., cross-sectional method), this study could deepen our understanding of the influencing mechanism of gift-giving in live video streaming, which could also provide practical implications for the sustainable development of the live video streaming industry. Full article
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Review

Jump to: Research, Other

19 pages, 758 KiB  
Review
The Effects of Sensory Cues on Immersive Experiences for Fostering Technology-Assisted Sustainable Behavior: A Systematic Review
by Yaqi Zhang and Yao Song
Behav. Sci. 2022, 12(10), 361; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs12100361 - 27 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3366
Abstract
Games are consistently acknowledged as a powerful approach that can significantly impact people’s behavior towards living in a sustainable way. Sensory cues are regarded as influential factors in facilitating immersive experiences in gamified applications to foster sustainable behavior. As our perception of an [...] Read more.
Games are consistently acknowledged as a powerful approach that can significantly impact people’s behavior towards living in a sustainable way. Sensory cues are regarded as influential factors in facilitating immersive experiences in gamified applications to foster sustainable behavior. As our perception of an environment is influenced not only by what we can see but also by additional sensory input such as sound and touch, additional sensory information can be part of the participant’s experience. This study systematically scrutinized game-based applications containing sensory cues to interpret current technology-assisted sustainable behavior development. This study provides a review of the impact of the sensory signals offered by video games, virtual reality, and augmented reality on pro-environmental behavioral intention. This research found that human senses can change the perception of immersion in multiple ways: visual (dimensions, angles, color), auditory (music, dialogue), and haptic, and these can affect sustainable behavior. Thus, we argue that multiple sensory modalities provide more opportunities to influence users to act sustainably. Based on the results, the theoretical contribution of this paper emphasizes the level of immersion, which is closely related to various sensory perceptions, and explains the correlation between them. In terms of industrial applications, it provides game designers, developers of VR and AR applications, and planners of sustainable education guidelines for the adoption of immersive scenarios. Full article
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Other

Jump to: Research, Review

1 pages, 166 KiB  
Correction
Correction: Aleissa et al. The Association between Video Game Type and Aggressive Behaviors in Saudi Youth: A Pilot Study. Behav. Sci. 2022, 12, 289
by Majid A. Aleissa, Shuliweeh Alenezi, Hassan N. Saleheen, Sumayyah R. Bin Talib, Altaf H. Khan, Shatha A. Altassan and Ahmed S. Alyahya
Behav. Sci. 2023, 13(11), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/bs13110937 - 16 Nov 2023
Viewed by 672
Abstract
The authors would like to make the following correction to the published paper [...] Full article
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