Internet pornography use: perceived addiction, psychological distress, and the validation of a brief measure

J Sex Marital Ther. 2015;41(1):83-106. doi: 10.1080/0092623X.2013.842192. Epub 2013 Dec 16.


The authors aimed to validate a brief measure of perceived addiction to Internet pornography refined from the 32-item Cyber Pornography Use Inventory, report its psychometric properties, and examine how the notion of perceived addiction to Internet pornography might be related to other domains of psychological functioning. To accomplish this, 3 studies were conducted using a sample of undergraduate psychology students, a web-based adult sample, and a sample of college students seeking counseling at a university's counseling center. The authors developed and refined a short 9-item measure of perceived addiction to Internet pornography, confirmed its structure in multiple samples, examined its relatedness to hypersexuality more broadly, and demonstrated that the notion of perceived addiction to Internet pornography is very robustly related to various measures of psychological distress. Furthermore, the relation between psychological distress and the new measure persisted, even when other potential contributors (e.g., neuroticism, self-control, amount of time spent viewing pornography) were controlled for statistically, indicating the clinical relevance of assessing perceived addiction to Internet pornography.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Behavior, Addictive*
  • Erotica / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Individuality
  • Internet*
  • Male
  • Psychometrics / statistics & numerical data
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sexual Dysfunctions, Psychological / diagnosis
  • Sexual Dysfunctions, Psychological / psychology*
  • Students / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Young Adult