Friendship and social networking sites.
October 18, 2007 8:34pm CST
The internet is moving into a new era called Web 2.0, which is more interactive. Previously we use the internet to search for information, do research or conduct business. These days, aside from making money, more people are using it to find friends and even share personal experiences with them. Social networking sites like MySpace, Bebo, Facebook and of course MyLot are a part of this new face of the internet. I still remember my schooldays where i have to put in efforts to make friends with someone i liked or admired. And maintaining friendship required even more efforts and commitments. Should one of us slack, then the other would have to make additional efforts if he wants to keep the relationship going. It seems like there's a lot of labour involved but it's what makes friendship meaningful and rewarding. The adage, 'you get what you give' applies here. Now, making friends are so much easier. We only have to sent out invitation with a push of the mouse button, that is. We don't even have to write the invitation ourselves as the program will do it for us. And soon, we would have more 'friends' joining our 'group'. But is this friendship? Or are we playing a game called 'friendship'? We know that young people have a need to connect with their friends. It seemed they think that all they need to do to connect with one is to connect online. Many have more friends than they would ever have in real life. But does this translate into genuine friendship? Real friendship takes time to form and to prove itself. It requires our time and attention and care. In the fast and often formless world of the cyberspace, can we find these qualities in our online friends? Everything is easily available at the end of a mouse-click; from buying essential items to booking air-tickets. Is friendship then just another option in a drop-down menu? Technology has brought people closer together but does this sense of closeness merely touches the surface? Could we be mistaking our interest in these site for friendship?
• United States
19 Oct 07
Yes, it is possible to have far more superficial relationships online, but sometimes that is not altogether a bad thing. The internet does tend to make friendships expendable, however, in a way that fully appreciate. One press of the delete button, and they are gone forever, lol. But there are some people I know online who have been casual friends for years, almost 20 years in one case, and they are in many ways closer friends than the people living next door.
• United States
19 Oct 07
Oh yes! After about 15 years we did in fact meet one another and now the four of us get together for a lovely dinner out at least once a year. Well, it is sad to say, but there are some people I've known in "real life" that I wished I could get rid of as easily as pressing the delete button, but fortunately, for the most part, our relationships are not like that.
19 Oct 07
Technology has really affected our life in more ways we can imagine. Everything is just within our fingertips. Making friends online is good. We have somebody to talk to and share thoughts with. But I still believe that stronger relationship could be built by personal face-to-face interaction. In the internet, we talk with each other even if don't have personal connection. Real life friends talk but each sentence is loaded with concern or emotions. There is a string attached. And that is what matters most in terms of personal relationship. We don't want to have a third person point of view, we want somebody that is "connected" with the things we go through in life. Have you heard of the poem entitled Paradox of our Time"? It say's "We've been to the moon and back, but we find it difficult to cross the street and greet our neighbor". Technology has taken us far except on building personal relationship with people around us.
20 Oct 07
The internet is the only place where we can talk to complete strangers. That is a good thing as we can share out thoughts to a wider audience, but sometimes i do ask myself, why do i have a need for that. Then, i always justified it by saying i could gain more knowledge and a broader perspective on things which was sometimes not possible from my real friends. With that said, nothing could ever replace my real-life friends and family, and i believe and hope everyone here would feel the same too.
6 Nov 07
I also agree with you. Few years back also networking sites were not so popular on internet. It is making the world smaller day to day. But still I think making friend on internet only is not that much intense. Still it my idea only. Many people have even found out life partner on net only.
7 Nov 07
Yes, you can have "friendship" from people around the world because of Internet. But this "friendship" is often superficial. I still believe that to find a true friendship, you still have to meet someone in person. That way, you can see how truly he/she is. However, you can get a true friendship through online but you still need to meet in person. Internet is only a "tool" to find friends. A "tool" is like joining a club or organization to find friends.
6 Nov 07
Friendship in the virtual reality is possible. You can get to meet a friend from anywhere but only when you meet them face-to-face that friendship flourishes. I don't think friendship is shared only on cyberspace. As human beings, we are binded by real interaction, by communication that deals primarily with sincerity. We share life when we share life's circumstances and mysteries, that is when friendship is shared. Life is one super highway that we cannot at times fathom. We are seemingly surrounded by mysteries of its impossibilities. I don't know but for some the cyberspace is one of the endless possibilities of meeting and mating.