Summary of article by Rogier et.al. (2021) in new JGI Spring Issue
Preliminary studies indicate an increased frequency of gaming and social media use during the COVID-19 lockdown, possibly due to a rise in feelings of loneliness/social isolation. Rogier and colleagues conducted a longitudinal study in Rome, Italy, measuring self-reported feelings of loneliness, frequency of gaming, and social media use. A battery of questionnaires was administered to participants at the beginning of lockdown and three days prior to the end lockdown (Stage 2). Structural Equation Modeling indicated that level of loneliness predicted both gaming and social media use, even after controlling for these factors at Stage 1. They argue that increased feelings of loneliness may exacerbate vulnerability to technology abuse during times of mandatory social isolation.