Technology, Isolation and Community

Recently, the Pew Research Center asked the following questions:

  • Are Americans More Socially Isolated?

  • Is Internet or Mobile Phone Use Related to Smaller or Less Diverse Core Networks?

  • Is Internet Use Leading to Less Face-to-Face Contact with our Closest Social Ties or with Local Social Ties?

  • Are Core Network Members Also our “Friends” on Social Networking Services such as Facebook, MySpace and LinkedIn?

  • Is Internet Use Related to Less Interaction with Neighbors or Lower Levels of Participation in Local Voluntary Associations?

  • Is Internet Use Associated With “Cocooning,” or a Withdrawal from Public and Semipublic Spaces?

  • Are Internet and Mobile Phone Use Associated with More or Less Diverse Personal Networks?

Admittedly, I found the research more than a little surprising, and it’s made me revisit some of my presuppositions about internet use, social media, blogging, etc. For their illuminating answers, click here.