Pulman, A. and Taylor, J., 2011. Munchausen by Internet (MBI): Current research and future directions. Behaviour & Information Technology. (Submitted)
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The Internet has revolutionised the health world, enabling self-diagnosis and online support to take place irrespective of location or time. However, despite the many positive impacts that the Internet brings, a number of negative behaviours are discussed in this paper. Reports of anti-normative behaviour in web communities include the dissemination of incorrect information (e.g. pro-Anorexia). Some impacts appear to have equivalent offline antecedents (e.g. cyberchondria), however what is particularly worrying with online negative behaviours is the ease with which they can be promulgated, the difficulty in detection and the potentially more damaging impacts to the isolated victim. An example of one such negative health related behaviour is discussed in depth: "Munchausen by Internet" (MBI), where medically well individuals fake recognised illnesses causing mistrust and destruction of online support groups. The aspect of MBI where individuals actively seek to disrupt for their own satisfaction has so far not been associated with the wider phenomena of Internet Trolls and Flamers. This paper proposes the connection should be formerly acknowledged to assist in effectively identifying and minimising the growth of this behaviour as more and more people seek reassurance and support about their health in an online environment.
|Subjects:||Generalities > Computer Science and Informatics|
Technology > Medicine and Health
|Group:||School of Design, Engineering & Computing > Psychology Research Group|
|Deposited By:||Associate Professor Jacqui Taylor|
|Deposited On:||18 May 2011 12:37|
|Last Modified:||07 Mar 2013 15:44|
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