Effects of the Internet on Interpersonal Communication

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Lyceum of the Philippines University-Batangas
Capitol Site, Batangas City, 4200

Final Paper:

The Effects of the Internet
On Interpersonal Communication

Presented to
Dr. Neil P. Balba

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements
for the subject Advanced Educational Technologies (MA 709)
Master of Arts Major in English Language Studies


Ma. Anna Corina G. Kagaoan-Pablo

April 29, 2011


The influence of the Internet has caused a change in the way we communicate, learn and shop. The Internet is probably most famous for the ability to spread information, fact or fiction. We were once limited to news editors of a local paper, then to national cable news. There is no question that easy access to the Internet, like the introduction of mail service and the invention of the telephone, has changed the nature of people's connection to others in their social world. Mail made possible connections among people without physical proximity, and the telephone facilitated communication among distant people, making rapid connections possible across long distances. But has this communication revolution changed the pure nature of interpersonal and group processes? On the one hand, since the primary use of the Internet is communication, some people might speculate that the Internet will have positive social consequences in people's everyday lives because it increases the frequency and quality of interpersonal communications among people. People with easy access to others would feel better connected and more strongly supported by others, leading to happiness and engagement in families, organizations, communities, and society more generally. But, on the other hand, the ease of electronic communication may lead to weaker social ties, because people have less reason to leave their homes and actually interact face to face with other people. The Internet allows people to more easily work from their home, to form and sustain friendships and even romantic attachments from their home, to bank from their home, to vote and engage in political- and social-issue-based discussions with others (from home). In this variety of ways, Internet communications can potentially displace face-to-face communications. I think this point is important because psychologists in many researches have described and proved such face-to-face and telephone connections as being of higher quality, when viewed in terms of their contribution to satisfaction and well-being. Reading a series of longitudinal and experimental studies that test a theory of relationship formation on the Internet, these researchers directly address the argument that the psychological quality of Internet social interaction is lower than is the psychological quality of traditional face-to-face interaction. INTRODUCTION

Communication at one time may have been described as talking, and perhaps reading. But since then, communication's definition has completely been transformed. The Internet has played a key role in the technological development that aid and produce communication. Before the Internet was introduced to the public in the mid-90s, most people used telephones and postal mail to communicate. For businesses and organizations, internal computer-networking, television, radio, newspapers, conferences, meetings, and faxes were also essential keys to communication, advertising, and the distribution of information. Now, just over a decade later, the majority of information, education, and communication are now accessible over the Internet and to the majority of homes across the world. There are many aspects of communication and society that has been affected by this transition to an Internet powered world. It has been noted that many people—when not speaking in person—communicated over the phone or by sending postal letters. Because of broadband Internet service, there have been a number of newer methods to communicate, some of which have become...
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