The addictive stimulus associated with an 'Internet addiction' is technically a rewarding and reinforcing stimulus which is transmitted via the internet, as opposed to exposure or access to the Internet itself; hence, "Internet addiction" is a misnomer. With the use of newer technology such as tablet computers and smartphones, users can go to the bathroom or another private place to engage with the Internet, without others knowing about it. Internet users often get an excited feeling of a 'rush' or a "buzz" that they get when winning an online auction, a video game or online gambling.
He used this term because it was a suitable fit to his parody.
This idea he conjured was to demonstrate the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders handbook's complexity and rigidity.
IAD was originally proposed as a disorder in a satirical hoax by Ivan Goldberg, M.
D., in 1995, although some later researchers have taken his essay seriously.
Thompson academically surveyed over 100 people in 1995 who claimed online addiction at the time, and, after winnowing down viable participant response to a value of N=32, concluded in his published Internet Connectivity: Addiction and Dependency Study that Internet addiction, while needing more research, was often the way people felt rather than what was actually transpiring clinically, with his research results statistically confirming that the newness of the Internet, its empowerment of the individual with learning and knowledge, along with online community development and relationships, was why people were spending inordinate amounts of time on the Internet.