Background and aims: Prior research on Internet dependency has examined various individual traits as contributing factors. Since domain-specific traits tend to have higher abilities to explain outcome variables, this study investigates a technology-related specific trait, i.e., computer playfulness, as a predictor of Internet dependency, and their influence on Internet usage patterns and academic performance. Methods: A sample of 267 college students was surveyed to examine these relationships. In addition to demographic information, the questionnaire contained measurement scales to assess playfulness, Internet dependency as well as work/study-related and social-related uses of the Internet. Results: Survey data indicate that playfulness significantly predicts Internet dependency (Δ R 2 = 19%). Playfulness is also significantly related to students’ grade point average ( p <.001), as well as Internet use for social purposes ( p <.022), and its impacts are fully mediated by Internet dependency. It was also found that neither playfulness nor Internet dependency is significantly associated with Internet use for work/study purposes. Conclusions: Playfulness, as a domain-specific individual trait, is a powerful predictor of Internet dependency, which is positively related to social use of the Internet, and negatively related to student academic performance.