Relational Satisfaction as a Result from the Type of Communication Medium Used: Face-to-Face Communication Versus Computer Mediated in Romantic Relationships

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The use of the Internet, mobile phones, and other technology is becoming a prominent way to communicate interpersonally, especially between relational partners. Romantic relationships are one type of interpersonal relationship that utilizes computer-mediated communication (CMC). Most individuals are faced with busy schedules, long work hours, and balancing their careers and their family life at home. Large numbers of working women with children (Hayghe, 1997), dual-earner couples (Winkler, 1998) have increased rapidly in the last several decades. In addition, the proportion of individuals working very long work weeks has increased, particularly for those who hold managerial, professional, sales, or transportation occupations (Rones & Gardner, 1997).In a study conducted by Kingston and Nock, 1987, it was determined that couples time together was negatively impacted by the number of hours the couple worked. Knowing the most effective way to communicate in romantic relationships can help to diminish the amount of confrontation in a relationship and increase rates of satisfaction among couples. In 2010, there were an estimated 1.96 billion Internet users worldwide making up almost 29% of all humans, which indicated a growth of 444% in the last decade (Internet Usage Statistics, 2010). One report, based on nationwide survey results released by the Pew Internet and American Life project, estimated that the Internet is being used by 73% of American adults and that 78% of American adults own cell phones (Jones & Fox, 2009). Such an increase in this wireless communications technology has brought about many changes in the nature of social interactions, both positive and negative (Geser 2003; Palen 2002). texting and internet communication becoming more prominent forms of communication, there is opportunity for improvement in relationships who spend long hours at work but wish to communicate more frequently with their partners. In this study, we will examine the relationship between the amount of face to face time spent in romantic relationships and the degree of satisfaction among couples. We will be looking for the implications of face to face communication versus computer mediation. Overall, the quality of communication may be lower within couples who are primarily internet communication users over face-to-face communication users due to the lack of intimacy exchanged with kinesics and proxemics an other non-verbal means of communication that can only be acheived when using face-to-face communication. If this is true, then the reduction in the quality of communication may also have an effect on relationship satisfaction, on average, in relationships where much of the communication that occurs takes place via the internet using social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook, and also by phone via texting and talking. These differences that exist between face-to-face and computer mediated communication would benefit of attention, and lie at the basis of this research. RQ1: Which Communication quality and quantity indicators predict intimacy? RQ2: Which Communication quality and quantity indicators predict satisfaction? Hypothesis

In order to better understand the link between satisfaction among couples and the types of communication that are most prominently used in relationships, we research several studies to help test our hypotheses which we believe will lead to valuable information that will help us understand the subject matter. H1: Relational partners that communicated primarily through computer mediated communication such as texting, Facebook, Twitter and email would have an overall lower degree of satisfaction with their partner and overall relationship in terms of intimacy. H2: Relational partners that communicated primarily through computer mediated communication such as texting, Facebook, Twitter and email would have an overall higher degree of satisfaction with their partner and overall relationship in terms of...
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