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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Nicholas Greco IV, MS, BCETS, CATSM (Columbia College of Missouri)
Description: This is a discussion of Internet psychology presented by some of the leading researchers in psychology. While the Internet is not new, the behaviors and sometimes actions of those online are beginning to challenge widely held assumptions and beliefs. This is an area ripe for not only discussion but research in keeping up with the technology.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide the first definitive book on Internet psychology as a platform for discussion, interest, and research. While the Internet has contributed numerous advances in every field imaginable, it has come with some negatives such as deception, crime, outlets for addictions, and changes in attitudes.
Audience: Anyone in the mental health and social sciences fields will find this a fascinating book. Those in law enforcement and the legal system may also be interested. To some extent, the general public may also find this book interesting.
Features: The book is broken down into five parts covering interaction and interactivity, groups and communities, personality, self, and identity, psychological aspects of Internet use, and Internet-based research. Some notable topics are the online groups and communities inclusive of social and support as well as discriminatory and hate groups. There are five chapters on personality, self, and identity and the one on self-disclosure, privacy, and the Internet is outstanding. It covers people's attitudes and behavioral changes such as the preference for online activities over in-person social activities. Other topics include psychological problems, addictions, and health behavior. There is also a complete section on Internet-based research.
Assessment: With a doubt, this is the most relevant and definitive book available on Internet psychology and a required reading for all social scientists.