This paper proposes a radical extension of our perspective for analyzing human behavior in the networked age. Online activities should be understood not as being only inside the virtual world but rather as initiated by people with real-world intentions for the purpose of bringing about certain real-world consequences. To grasp the whole stream of human behavior flowing from real-world intentions to virtual-world activity and back to real-world consequences, we propose the ‘action stream’ concept. The paper details the conceptual framework of the action stream and discusses theoretical and practical obstacles affecting its utilization. It also proposes a novel method for analyzing action streams by taking advantage of web search log data and Internet survey infrastructures.