Finally some documented evidence of something bloggers have known for a long time. Connecting with people online doesn’t take away from face to face interaction and actually enhances relationships.
The initial warnings about the Internet’s creep into modern lives were dire: Communities would crumble because people would be chained to their computers.
But a new study by Canadian researchers suggests the Web actually expands and strengthens relationships.
“The Internet is adding on to community rather than destroying it,” said Barry Wellman, a sociology professor at the University of Toronto who co-wrote the report. “There were a huge number of people running around saying the sky was falling a few years ago. What we found is the sky isn’t falling, that life is going on and quite happily.”
The study, which was released yesterday, examined Americans’ Internet habits and found that computer users have larger social networks than non-users. And, perhaps surprisingly, people who use e-mail actually have more phone and face-to-face contact with their friends, families and associates.
From the Globe and Mail.