Skip to Content Cybersex Addiction cover image Cybersex Addiction 2005

Highly Recommended

Distributed by Filmakers Library, 124 East 40th Street, New York, NY 10016; 202-808-4980
Produced by Melanie Wood/Nick Orchard
Directed by Melanie Wood/Nick Orchard
DVD, color, 45 min.

Sr. High - Adult
Sociology, Human Sexuality, Psychology

Date Entered: 07/14/2006

Reviewed by LaRoi Lawton, Library & Learning Resources Department, Bronx Community College of the City University of New York

The term “addiction” used to be exclusive to chemicals such as alcohol, drugs, or nicotine. With recent research on the brain and its processes, we now understand that many behaviors can become as chemically addictive as a substance. Extreme overuse of the Internet is such an addiction. Cybersex Addiction, directed by Melanie Wood takes the viewer inside the multi-facet world of real life cyber sex addicts. Many men and women are using the Internet today for "cybering" (cybersex). Cybersex is defined as the consensual sexual discussion online for the purpose of achieving arousal or an orgasm.

In addition to viewing and/or downloading pornography along with masturbation, Dr. Alan Cooper and other researchers in the field and film indicate that cybersex activities also include:

  • reading and writing sexually explicit letters and stories
  • visiting sexually oriented chat rooms
  • placing ads to meet sexual partners
  • e-mailing to set up personal meetings with someone
  • engaging in interactive online affairs sometimes using electronic cameras for real-time viewing of each other. Cybersex Addiction takes a serious look the Internet's profound effect on human sexuality through the eyes and daily lifestyles of Nicole, an Information Technology consultant, Alan, a corporate attorney; Lyn, a writer, Steven, a salesman as they access the Internet to make sexual contact with other people without ever having met eye-to-eye or having said a simple hello. Director Wood vividly shows people who find virtual sexual encounters more liberating and exciting than encounters with "real" people. This startling documentary reveals how the internet contributes to alienation, especially in the area of human sexuality. Cybersex Addiction is the story of real people whose virtual worlds become more compelling, more “real” than the outside world. Each share their stories of battling what psychologists refer to as one of the most rapidly growing addictions. There are varying views within the mental health community about whether the Internet is a physical or psychological addiction - or even whether you can call it an addiction at all. Most call it a disorder, Pathological Internet Use (PIU). Some say it elevates serotonin levels, others say it's the dopamine. Whatever the science, cybersex compulsives think offline sex is dull. As broadband access to the Internet increases, allowing faster "absorption" of the "addictive substance," we'll likely see an increase in compulsive, pathological Internet use, according to Cooper and others. Film director Melanie Wood is a Vancouver filmmaker, born and raised who began working with the Canadian Broadcasting Company in 1981. She has written, directed, and produced a wide variety of current affairs and documentary programs for the CBC and others for the last twenty years.


  • Platinum Award, Annual World-Fest-Houston 2005