Engagement With Novel Virtual Environments: The Role of Perceived Novelty and Flow in the Development of the Deficient Self-Regulation of Internet Use and Media Habits


Corresponding author: Robert Shota Tokunaga; e-mail: robert.tokunaga@hawaii.edu


This article extends theory on the deficient self-regulation (DSR) of Internet use and media habits by integrating predictors relevant to technology use. It introduces novelty perceptions of a technology and flow as conditions that increase the likelihood of experiencing DSR and media habits. An experiment, with between- and within-subjects components, was undertaken to test whether the relationships of DSR hypothesized at various stages of technology use are substantiated. Results demonstrated that the perceived novelty of a technology initiated flow, which in turn predicted growth of DSR during initial engagement with virtual environments. Growth of DSR in familiar stages of technology use corresponded to the formation of media habits over time.