Mike Arauz: Spectrum of Online Friendship

Mike Arauz Diagram

Nancy reminded me that most online friendships are extensions of off-line friendships. So, who am I really talking about here?

This spectrum uses the relationship structure of people on the web who are reaching a point where they would actually say that most of their friendships are online only. While this is only a small fraction of all internet users, it’s a quickly growing segment, as digital technologies enable us to expand our natural Dunbar number (which Faris raised and touches on here). For some people, it’s even easier to maintain online only friendships (often with people in distant geographic locations) than it is with people you’re expected to see in real life. Our traditional definition of friendship has evolved.

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