transfer 19(2) » Rezeptions- und Wirkungsforschung

The (not so) Guilty Mouse Potato

How Appraisal of Online Procrastination Changes the Recovery Outcome after Online Media Use

Internet users are constantly challenged by numerous opportunities for dysfunctional forms of online media use. Users suffering from situational self-control failure, in particular, are prone to online procrastination, a self-harming but common dilatory behavior. Although procrastinators are driven by a need for mood repair and recovery, procrastination with offline media such as TV has been found to reduce the recovery experience due to negative appraisal in the form of guilt. The present study examines whether this finding can be replicated for the use of online communication. Additionally, the role of self-forgiveness, a beneficial reappraisal of one’s online media use, was investigated. The study analysed survey data of N=309 Internet users with a series of SEMs. Results underline that online procrastination elicits feelings of guilt, but is particularly accompanied by high levels of self-forgiveness. Whereas guilt impairs media-induced recovery, self-forgiveness seems to restore the recovery experience in part. However, when appraisal and reappraisal are assessed simultaneously, online procrastination indirectly impairs recovery by increasing feelings of guilt, which make it harder to self-forgive. Exploratory results further indicate that frequent online procrastination has become a pressing issue for some Internet users. Online procrastinators reported strains in several domains of everyday life, particularly concerning their subjective well-being and work performance.
Die Arbeit wurde in englischer Sprache verfasst.