Relationships through technology

November 2, 2009

A lot of people have stated that my generation is losing a certain something in their relationships with others because they communicate through a technological medium; and in some cases that may be true. However, Stefana Broadbent recently gave a speech, which was present on TED, that contrasted these thoughts.

The Internet has connected many people world wide and not only enables intimacy, but has  become a norm in our society’s culture. This made me wonder. In the future, will technology be part of the glue that holds them together or strengthens the relationship?

Broadbent explains how she delved deeper into this topic by interviewing several people and the person they talked to the most. These relationships ranged anywhere from close friends and family members to significant others and spouses. These interviews revealed things like:

– A person may have hundreds of friends, but really only keeps in touch and are good friends with a small handful of them.

-Massive communication through texting, IMing, Facebooking, and other Internet and technological forms are being done at 11 am.

– Facebook communication is one of the most popular forms of media used to socialize with others.

–  Of all the contacts a person has in their phone, 80% of the calls they make are only to a group of four people.

– It is becoming more and more popular to Skype with family members to feel like they are in the room. Many people, who have relatives that are far away, Skype in the morning or at night to have breakfast or dinner with them.

– Texting acts as little reminders that tell the other person things like “have a good day”

– Today’s children are being taught to understand and utilize these methods of communication due to the growing need to use it in many professions and (when encouraging independence and taking them on trips away from home) helping them learn how to keep in touch while in different locations.

People are constantly using these forms in order to connect with others and the numbers are only growing. Knowing this, how big a part, do you think, will technology and the Internet play in our relationships in the future?


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