Implicit Associations in Cybersex Addiction: Adaption of an Implicit Association Test with Pornographic Pictures


Snagowski, Jan; Wegmann, Elisa; Pekal, Jaro; Laier, Christian; and Brand, Matthias


2015 in Addictive Behaviors, Vol. 49, pp. 7-12

  • Results show positive relationships between implicit associations of pornographic pictures with positive emotions and tendencies towards cybersex addiction, problematic sexual behavior, sensitivity towards sexual excitation as well as subjective craving.
Recent studies show similarities between cybersex addiction and substance dependencies and argue to classify cybersex addiction as a behavioral addiction. In substance dependency, implicit associations are known to play a crucial role, and such implicit associations have not been studied in cybersex addiction, so far. In this experimental study, 128 heterosexual male participants completed an Implicit Association Test (IAT; Greenwald, McGhee, & Schwartz, 1998) modified with pornographic pictures. Further, problematic sexual... READ FULL ABSTRACT
  • "The main result of the current study is that a relationship between positive implicit associations with pornographic pictures and tendencies towards cybersex addiction was found. As expected, such implicit associations were additionally connected to high problematic sexual behavior, sensitivity towards sexual excitation, and measures of subjective craving. Further, we showed that implicit associations interacted with high subjective craving and led thereby to stronger tendencies of cybersex addiction."
  • "These results are comparable to findings from substance dependency research by indicating a positive relationship between the relative strength of implicit associations and addiction-related measurements. Therefore, our findings provide further empirical evidence for the proposition to classify an addictive use of cybersex as a behavioral addiction."
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