Effects of Online Social Networking on Social Relationships

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The Internet has grown in coverage and capabilities. There are many people who have been connected to the internet now than it was ten years ago. This can be attributed to the adoption of computer networks and the aspects of globalization. Social networking has gone a mile with lots of influence to various groups (Duggan, Ellison, Lampe, Lenhart, & Madden, 2015). Online social technology has created a change on our people around the world interact. This comes with both negative and positive effects on various relationships among other social groups. Since time of immemorial, people have tried developing various platforms to ease social networking (Jurgens, 2013). The development has been witnessed evolving from primitive language encoding to the latest mode of technologies where smart phones and computers have replaced with new online social platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook, LinkedIn, Imo among others. This study intends to focus on the social networking effects to social relationship. However, relationship satisfaction and the dependency on internet depend with an individuals relationship closeness. This paper will focus on the influence that social networking has had on social relationships.

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The introductory and usage of social networking sites and web-based technologies has become one of the integral part in the day-to-day communication around the world. Most of the users of the social networking platforms are engaging on their respective accounts on a daily basis through mobile phones and computers. However, despite of the negligence that has been witnessed mostly by various social sites, it is now approved with evidence that it creates a positive impact cutting through health, cultural studies, education, sociology and political sciences (Kasavana et. al., 2010).

However, in the previous days, people used to share information and pass communication in a face to face. The recent communication platforms such as skype has transformed the communication mode in an advance and allowing various parties to interact face to face with the aid of special cameras. This was developed so as to enhance the verbal information and non-verbal communication shared between parties. This advancement as developed by the social networking sites has enable parties positioning at differently geographical areas to develop and maintain their relationships. However based on locations of individuals, families, lovebirds, couples do interact at any time by a click of a single button. Social networking sites has been of great importance as well as being a nuisance to couples and family members (Kasavana, Nusair, & Teodosic, 2010).

One of the benefits that can be associated with social media platforms is that it has helped in creating new social relationships fast. People get new friends and acquaintances than they used to get when there was no social media. The social media has affected the way new people are met. It is not only the way new people are met, but also the process of sealing and realizing the potential people who can make good friends has been reduced. Instead of waiting till the second meeting for one to realize that a person is not fit for them, this can be known in the first meeting on social media (Kietzmann, Hermkens, McCarthy, & Silvestre, 2011). There is a complete profile of someone in social media which makes it easy to understand the hobbies and the interests of someone in these social media.

Social media has made it easy to integrate the social media profiles of partners. This makes the integration of the networks of friends an easy task so that it is easy to have a connection of these networks together and achieve the needed integration in the social media. It is easy to know the extent of friendship that someone has with people on their social media networks (Stice, & Shaw, 1994). Social media makes it understand the relationships that someone has on social media. The dispersion of the mutual friends is also shown in social media. This means that one does not only show the number of friends that they have on social media networks, it also shows how the mutual friends have been dispersed in the social media.

Social media has also started to focus in getting people engage in real-life relationship. This means that people are able to interact not only on the social media platforms, but in offline real-world relationships than they have been undergoing (Sutcliffe, & Wang, 2012). Online social platforms are making the meeting and start of productive relationships possible and is the interface where these relationships get started. Many offline relationships have started with the use of social media. With teh use of social media, there is the growth of social relationships which has enhanced the development of real personal relationships without the use of the Internet.

Stice and Shaw (1994) in their studies argued on the relationship strings that Facebook claimed to maintain the link but the kind of challenges faced by parties in a romantic relationship are not known. So many questions have been raised concerning the use of social networking sites. Could these social networking platforms, in one way or the other causing the intimate relationships demise?

Prior to the introduction and advancement of the social sites, social penetration theories where they concluded that individuals work through a relationship in four stages that tends to equate to a higher intimacy levels and depths. The social networking platform sites, which has correlate with mobile technology has changed most of the common communications into a socio-dialogue which has been witnessed to dominate the young-generation and a new culture of the era created (Valkenburg et al., 2006).

According to Jurgens (2013), social networking sites are the leading platform used for internet with its daily high growth on percentage. The rapid growth on the use of the social media sites has further contributed to a number of outcomes that are either beneficial or detrimental to both the users and owners.

With the advancing technology, the world has becoming much connected hence allowing individuals to interact as well as do various tasks and anything that pleases, but must be done on a virtual space. However, the advancement to the latest online social platforms such as text messaging and chats has totally altered the models in a relationship has compared to the earlier relationship models (Jurgens, 2013). It is revealed that the amount of self disclosure on social media creates some individuals information to be easy to identify hence ones identity in the internet remains traceable (Kietzmenn et. al., 2011).

Despite the fact that social media platforms can be the best tool in creating relationship, it is also used in as an aid in dissolving a formed relationship. According to Brown (2011), the natural and the virtual distances that are created by the social media platforms, it is easier for the relationship partisans to accomplish any interpersonal unpleasant tasks. The formation of the text messaging services was mainly to express affection and hence still hold its prominence due to its simplicity and accessibility (Jurgens, 2013). Sending immediate affections to a romantic partner, text messaging was the most accessible and unlike the advancement that has been portrait by the whatsapp online social platform. Sharing affections and passions in a relationship between partners can create downfalls in a relationship as well maintaining it.

Online social relationship trust and modeling

However, based on the review on the effects of online social relationship ties; social relationships are prone to a competitive demand of time and alternative tradeoff of the most time spent on modeling for a physical outfit or socializing. Based on online socializing, a psychological mechanism that is implemented by a specific model such as trust is more concordant than a given linear of a simple relationship that tends to a strong social relationship. However, through a frequent bonding on an online social platform two parties or couples maintain repetitive interactions so as to enhance a trust model. This mode of a recurrent and continuous interaction on a social platform strengthens trust model to a calculative mode whereby it is transformed with time into relational; a trust based on a continuous online social relationship experience (Sutcliffe and Wang, 2012).

Common Social networking relationship model

A relationship can easily be created on a given social platform without a physical consent between the parties. The frequency of recurrent interaction and shared emotional feelings creates a trust model hence building a trusting relationship. Couples sustain their relationship despite of distance with the aid of strengthen social interactions that is observe empirically. However, though social relationship is strived for a positive impact it also results with a negative end. The model and agents of interactions determines acceptances response or reject initiation. The most challenge for couples is to maintain the social relationship as to remain positive, trust ought to accumulate and continuous interactions to sustain the social relationship. However, online social networking relationship cuts across between the relational and calculative mode based on a trust model. Increase on a relationship trust is controlled by an algorithm that smoothly alters an individuals hypothesis in a high-trust relationship to show-up a unique behavior to individuals clustered to low-trust relationships (Duggan et. al., 2015).

Social media is seen to be killing the personal relationships that were there in the past. The use of social media has made people shun interactions with people in the real-world. Social media can bring people together, and yet at the same time, alienate people from one another. It is kind of a paradox. It is common to see people chatting together, while at the same time, they want to see their social media profiles and how people are interacting online. The social media has taken the attention of friends so that they are no longer committed to the physical interaction. Many people nowadays interact online and will want to do everything with their friends online. Friends might be quiet in a conversation because they are busy with their mobile devices. In the real sense, people might be absent from their immediate situations because of the interaction that they have with the social media (Valkenburg, Peter, & Schouten, 2006).

From morning to evening, people who are hyper-connected never stop for a single moment to disconnect. They are connected to the social media platforms for most of the times that they have on the internet. They are always on the internet busy connecting with other people. They do not have the time ti connect with the people they would like to connect together. They have no patience and have not time to be idle and talk with people in their immediate environments. They would like to continue being connected and engaged so that they are busy with their lives throughout. It is a behavior which is seen to prevent people from reality and also alienate people with thought. People are always busy with something that they are engaging in.


Social networking platform is advancing rapidly with possession of a bright future for the young generations. However, many organization are maximizing the use of the medium in their daily practices hence creating an opportunity for social relationship interactions extending beyond working environments. The whole world seems closer day-in day-out hence everybody is trying to be so connected through the circle. Couples or dating parties have got an opportunity to practic...

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