Exploring user-avatar bond profiles: longitudinal impacts on internet gaming disorder

Brown, T., Smith, R., Zarate, D., Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524 and Stavropoulos, V., 2024. Exploring user-avatar bond profiles: longitudinal impacts on internet gaming disorder. Computers in Human Behavior, 159: 108340. ISSN 0747-5632

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Avatars serve as the virtual embodiment of users, facilitating their online interaction, with potential positive and negative effects. These effects range from enhancing social and personal development to facilitating disordered gaming patterns. As past literature has identified different disorder gaming patterns based on the connection an individual has with their avatar (referred to as the User-Avatar Bond [UAB]), the present study explored the gaming disorder risk based on a gamer's UAB profile. To investigate this, the present study comprised 565 online role-playing gamers (Mage = 29.3, SD = 10.6). Participants completed the User-Avatar Bond Questionnaire and the Internet Gaming Disorder Scale-Short-Form over two waves, six months apart. Latent profile analysis was employed which identified four distinct UAB profiles: Identified Gamers, Compensated Gamers, Detached Gamers, and Differentiated Gamers. ANOVAs were conducted to assess differences in IGD behaviours within the profiles across the two waves. The findings suggested a significant difference between the profiles and IGD, where heightened avatar identification and compensation levels may act as risk factors for IGD behaviours. These findings provide crucial insight regarding the role of UAB in IGD development, treatment, and prevention.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Computers in Human Behavior
Creators: Brown, T., Smith, R., Zarate, D., Griffiths, M.D. and Stavropoulos, V.
Publisher: Elsevier
Date: October 2024
Volume: 159
ISSN: 0747-5632
S0747563224002085Publisher Item Identifier
Rights: © 2024 the authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 18 Jun 2024 09:11
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2024 15:12
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/51581

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