Facebook and Social Relationships

Decent Essays

There’s a lot to be said for social networking, both good and bad. It began as a way for people to meet and socialize via the Internet; now it’s also being used for advertising, education, and entertainment.1 Social networking allows people from all over the world to meet people and interact with them. People can find peers who share their interests or offer support and encouragement. Unfortunately, social networking has given people the opportunity to cyberbully, cyberstalk, and to engage in other inappropriate and potentially illegal behaviors. In terms of relationships, online affairs and cheating are common and can lead to divorce. Research has also shown that when partners are both using social networking at the same time, it can lead to a “lack of engagement” which can also lead to divorce.2 Despite these negative changes to the ways in which people relate, social networking – in particular Facebook – has brought about some positive changes in the ways in which people related to one another. One way that Facebook has caused positive changes in the ways that people relate to one another is that it has increased social connectedness. Social connectedness is defined as “the depth and breadth of interpersonal relationships an individual entertains with other people.”3 Positive interpersonal connectedness is very important to psychological health and well-being.4 Facebook’s many features provide many ways to create connections. Those features also allow users to enhance

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