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Opaque
February 23rd, 2010, 01:16 AM
So... I was reading an assigned article for class, and it mentioned an experiment that found:

The more you use the internet, the more negative effects you would have on yourself. Examples include fewer friends and an increase in depression and loneliness.

I was wondering what you guys think about that statement, because looking back at my own life... there was definitely a time where I was more depressed and lonely - and I was basically living in the internet.

Now I think that if you balance real life social life with the internet, happiness can be attained - but I was wondering if it was the same for you all? D:?

magikarptrainer
February 23rd, 2010, 02:15 AM
Well. If I never used the internet at all I'd be pretty unhappy :P haha





Overall, I think it's true. Increased dependency on the web is a bad thing.

Okami Chi
February 23rd, 2010, 02:40 AM
I think this makes perfect sense. If you never come out from under your rock, you are going to be an unhappy person.

Houndoom19
February 23rd, 2010, 04:52 AM
I think it might be more the other way around. You're depressed, so rather than going out and having fun, you stay in and go on the internet instead. I don't really see how going on the internet can make you depressed and lonely, but I can see being lonely and depressed making you go on the internet.

Ineffable~
February 23rd, 2010, 05:51 AM
I think it might be more the other way around. You're depressed, so rather than going out and having fun, you stay in and go on the internet instead. I don't really see how going on the internet can make you depressed and lonely, but I can see being lonely and depressed making you go on the internet.
This.
Correlation does not imply causation. Almost everyone who spends a lot of time on the Internet does it because of problems in real life. Social life in the Internet is easier.

Also, there's a difference between "friends", and more specifically "real life friends". And there's a difference between "real life friends", and simply "people whom you hang out with during school".
:3

Weatherman, Kiyoshi
February 23rd, 2010, 06:25 AM
The internet iself is a great social tool for itself, you're never really alone of the internet.

However, we need to social contact of other people actually near us, or we will become lonely.
A well balanced social life on either side is good, is probably the best.

I actually need to get more guys friends, though.
Seriously, what, I only have like one actual guy friend off-web?
>.>"
Unless you want to count Bursty, he is my best friend and all, but we've never met face-to-face. :C

and why the hell am I telling you all this?

anyways, you'll hear comments such as the one you made a lot,
and about the one that states:
" Is the internet making people stupid? "

No, it isn't, it's just making the stupid people more noticable.

donavannj
February 23rd, 2010, 06:36 AM
For me, my internet addiction (yes, I'm pretty sure it's an addiction by this point) is a boredom and time killer between actual events in my life.

Talli
February 23rd, 2010, 06:52 AM
I need the internet to escape from the stesses of life

twocows
February 23rd, 2010, 08:17 AM
So... I was reading an assigned article for class, and it mentioned an experiment that found:

The more you use the internet, the more negative effects you would have on yourself. Examples include fewer friends and an increase in depression and loneliness.

I was wondering what you guys think about that statement, because looking back at my own life... there was definitely a time where I was more depressed and lonely - and I was basically living in the internet.

Now I think that if you balance real life social life with the internet, happiness can be attained - but I was wondering if it was the same for you all? D:?

Ahem.
CORRELATION IS NOT CAUSATION

In other words, it's quite possible that your internet usage has nothing to do with your social activeness. It could be (and quite likely is) that people that are unsocial are simply more likely to turn to the internet for their social life. Also, I'm willing to bet this "study" fails to consider internet friends as friends.

Blue Nocturne
February 23rd, 2010, 08:24 AM
For me its probably the other way around, without the internet i really wouldn't have a social life. Some of my happiest moments have been in internet chats or forums. Call me a sad person if you will but i think i would be more depressed out in the open (especially in this weather).

However, in San Diego, i had limited access to the internet (hence my absence) and was forced to have a outdoor life. I still managed to have a good time, perhaps the weather has an impact on happiness too.

To actually answer your question, i'm happy in either world if the chance of happiness presents itself, but in the depressing english weather, im happier on the internet right now.

Lt_Nite
February 23rd, 2010, 08:38 AM
For me because of the Interenet I'm never lonely seeing as I always have a way ot talk to my friends on it. I'm always on my computer yet I still go out and have good times with friends. I believe there should be some balance in social life and how much time you're on the internet, but as far as I see saying the more you use the internet the less friends you'll have and more depression is ridiculous.

Esper
February 23rd, 2010, 10:17 AM
I don't really see how going on the internet can make you depressed and lonely, but I can see being lonely and depressed making you go on the internet.
This is my experience. Others have gone into enough detail so I won't add to it except to say that most of my irl friends live in other towns/cities/countries so the internet is the best way for me to keep in touch with them.

Klippy
February 23rd, 2010, 11:07 AM
When I was depressed a few years ago, the internet practically saved me. Meeting people on this site really helped. Yeah, sometimes it sucks to think that while other people are out with friends, I'm on a computer or whatever...I just don't care too much anymore.

Highschool was when I spent the most time worrying what others thought and now I just prefer talking to people on here over spending time with friends I had in highschool that aren't even close with me anymore unless it's to their convenience.

The Doctor
February 23rd, 2010, 11:30 AM
When i on the internet i can make myself ''happy'' if you get me.
No seriously.

People cant get depressed off the net unless they go on sites and look at dead puppies or dudes killing themselves. And who would do that?

Ayselipera
February 23rd, 2010, 12:09 PM
The way I see it, this works in both ways.

My irl friends tend to annoying me from time to time. So going on the internet is a nice "getaway" from their annoyance. So every once in a while I'll spend a lot of time on the internet. At first I enjoy all my time spent on the computer because it keeps me from thinking about my friends and in general keeps me occupied.

Eventually all this time spent on the computer then starts to have a reverse effect. I'll start to miss my friends and begin to feel like I've distance myself away from them. Which I have a habit of doing throughout the year. I prefer to be alone most of the time, but even I get lonely and while the internet is a nice way to talk to people online, it doesn't replace real life. So of course after all this I'll start to have negative feelings and just be all around mopey.

So while the internet is nice for a certain amount of time each day, when I over do it I do notice signs of feeling sad and depressed.

Rokusasu
February 23rd, 2010, 01:32 PM
Yeah, I'm one of those people who find it much easier to communicate with others and be myself over the internet. I've been using the internet a lot more because of this, I've alienated all of my RL friends and become extremely lonely and perhaps depressed (not clinically diagnosed, but I feel low and my self-esteem is pretty much that of a slug XD).

Hopefully this will change when I go to uni. >:

Yuoaman
February 23rd, 2010, 07:38 PM
I also find it much easier to socialize while on the internet, in fact I'm actually closer to friends I've made on the internet than my 'school friends'. :P

In fact, until about a year ago I'd barely talk at school at all, and now that I'm becoming more social I'm starting to wish that I had started years ago... But you can't change the past, and I really wouldn't want to, as I've met some really amazing friends while on the internet.

Synaesthesia
February 23rd, 2010, 08:27 PM
Dumb.

"...fewer friends..."

I'm sorry but, the entire reason why someone has a dependency on the internet is because they regularly visit everchanging webpages. One of the most frequently interesting and progressing websites are forums such as PC. And what makes someone come back day after day? The social aspect. In other words: FRIENDS.

Sure, you have fewer friends who you may talk to and hang out with in person, but if someone rather stay home on their computer and talk to their friends over an MSN or even Skype, it's their prerogative. There's a reason why they've turned to the internet: most people on the internet aren't social people. The Internet provides the friendship one wants, without all the awkward reality of it. It's simply a good compromise to them.

They're only depressed if they compare their lives to others, who are more social. If they wish to be that way, then they will obviously be depressed. If they're comfortable in their skin and their preferred way of being social, then they have nothing to be sad about.

NOW DO I SEEM UNFRIENDLY AND DEPRESSED TO YOU?!??!?

kingofjokers
February 23rd, 2010, 08:53 PM
I agree with him /\ Now if you let the internet consume your life then of course your gonna have less friends because what do you do all day ..... on the web go out and make some new friends and you'll be all good.

Ninja Caterpie
February 23rd, 2010, 09:32 PM
My happiness is directly linked to what's going on outside, in my "real life".

My internet usage is relative to my happiness, but it's more like happiness squared = internet usage

It's a parabola - when I'm happy I use the internet, when I'm sad I use the internet! When I'm stuck in the middle, not so much.

zappyspiker
February 23rd, 2010, 11:02 PM
If you balance your life equally you'll be happy. I juggle Sports, my studies, my hobbies and music while at the same time my friends and the internet. I'm guessing it's whatever you do that makes you happy

magikarptrainer
February 24th, 2010, 01:27 AM
Ahem.
CORRELATION IS NOT CAUSATION

In other words, it's quite possible that your internet usage has nothing to do with your social activeness. It could be (and quite likely is) that people that are unsocial are simply more likely to turn to the internet for their social life. Also, I'm willing to bet this "study" fails to consider internet friends as friends.


It's a snowball effect. The evidence is all over this thread.


People with unsuccessful social lives are drawn to the internet. If they are more successful there they can neglect their real social lives and not really develop their social abilities. So they don't improve their social skills so they are drawn to the internet stronger to substitute a social life and the cycle repeats.


The internet can be a really addictive and bad habit. Sometimes it's pretty good to just log off.

Dukey
February 24th, 2010, 02:40 AM
That's completely stupid.
Anybody who wants to can balance out their internet & social life, and what if kids/people were already depressed before they joined the internet? Maybe the internet is all they have and a single place of happiness for them?

It's all about balancing it out, and not getting too caught up in something.

Guillermo
February 24th, 2010, 03:31 AM
This makes sense if you're a social outcast and struggle making friends. If not, then being on the internet shouldn't affect your IRL at all. That's why they're two separate things. You don't let them interfere.

twocows
February 24th, 2010, 07:10 AM
It's a snowball effect. The evidence is all over this thread.


People with unsuccessful social lives are drawn to the internet. If they are more successful there they can neglect their real social lives and not really develop their social abilities. So they don't improve their social skills so they are drawn to the internet stronger to substitute a social life and the cycle repeats.


The internet can be a really addictive and bad habit. Sometimes it's pretty good to just log off.
Now you're implying that a "real" (I use this word out of convenience, but it's misleading) social life is more valuable than an internet one, of which I have seen no evidence. And this doesn't change my initial assertion; people that are already depressed tend to be attracted to the internet, so you've got a biased sample to begin with. The internet doesn't cause that at all; if anything, I'd say it lessens it based on what I've seen in this thread (and from my own experiences).

magikarptrainer
February 24th, 2010, 12:50 PM
Now you're implying that a "real" (I use this word out of convenience, but it's misleading) social life is more valuable than an internet one, of which I have seen no evidence.

You don't go to school on the internet

You don't go to work on the internet

You don't have relationships, get married and start a family on the internet.





Being social isn't always about immediate gratification.

twocows
February 24th, 2010, 12:57 PM
You don't go to school on the internet

You don't go to work on the internet
And that has what to do with relationships?

You don't have relationships, get married and start a family on the internet.Wrong. (http://www.wow-europe.com/en/community/wowparents.html) And no, this isn't the only example, it happens a lot more often than you'd think. I met my first girlfriend on the internet a few years ago, and while things didn't work out in the end, I'll be damned if I let anyone call it meaningless.

Being social isn't always about immediate gratification.Again, what does this have to do with anything?

CharonEX
February 24th, 2010, 02:53 PM
...WOAH! I seriously just went through something like that .-.
Depression and all, and (even though I do have some friends) I was feeling like I didn't have any.

But really for me it's the internet that makes me happy since it's where I can keep in contact with friends who haven't given me their numbers, and lots of my online friends I've known longer than my real life friends, so I just seem to get along with my online friends better than my real life friends, so I'm actually a little more happier online.

Bay Alexison
February 24th, 2010, 05:25 PM
You don't go to school on the internet
Um, college/university online courses would like to say hi. Also, how about the homeschooled kids that needed the internet for research? I think US K-12 schools and the equivalent of that in other countries has online classes too, but not exactly sure.

You don't go to work on the internet
There's a thing called work at home. Many times you'll have to use email and chat to speak with the employees, bosses, and clients/customers. Also, a lot of people like to work at home because it is more convenient for them in that they wouldn't have to travel far and can still take care the house and family at the same time. In fact, when I took an information systems class at uni my professor said how people who stayed at home are actually more productive than the people at work and able to get more done.

Even if you're not working at home, you'll still need the internet to check your emails and other things. Most workplace will restrict or make sure you don't go on websites you're not supposed to go to.

You don't have relationships, get married and start a family on the internet.
Like twocows said, many people find relationships on the internet. Whether it worked out for them or not is a whole other story. Also, how about the many dating and social networking websites that helps many people who are shy about going out? Those sites sometimes give the people a push to have them to find someone and eventually to go out.

As for me, like a few others mentioned, I'm able to balance out between real life, hobbies and the internet. I'm able to surf the web and chat with my online friends, get my studies done, spend time with my family and real life friends, do my fanfiction and making banners, and I have a part time job. There might be times I might suddenly surf the web too long or spend too much time with family and friends when I'm supposed to be doing something else, but at this moment I'm happy. Online I get to chat with my friends and a lot of times funny conversations happen. That also goes the same when I'm with my real life friends and family.

Honest
February 24th, 2010, 05:30 PM
Well, my mouth says that without the internet, I'd be a hell of a lot more sadder, but without it, my grades would sure to improve, along with my mood about school (I guess).

So I guess there is some truth in that article. : P

Opaque
February 24th, 2010, 05:41 PM
Ahem.
CORRELATION IS NOT CAUSATION

In other words, it's quite possible that your internet usage has nothing to do with your social activeness. It could be (and quite likely is) that people that are unsocial are simply more likely to turn to the internet for their social life. Also, I'm willing to bet this "study" fails to consider internet friends as friends.


lol, yes, I know that correlation does not equal causation - however, if there is a strong positive relationship between the two variables - it should definitely be analyzed and studied. Another point is that the study was more like an experiment - so they had controlled variables and stuff....

I actually disagree with the claim that online friendships are considered to be not 'real' or valid - another study in the same article also said that it's actually psychologically beneficial to have online friends.

In order for the internet to be a negative influence on a person, I think it depends on how you use the internet and the intensity that you use it. I think that there is a blurred/unclear line between healthy use and addiction - I remember seeing a MTV 'Real Life' episode, and the intensity of their internet addiction was a bit too much. I've also heard stories about people who are addicted to MMORPGs - personally, I think that's a bit extreme, but that's just my opinion.

magikarptrainer
February 25th, 2010, 01:11 AM
Um, college/university online courses would like to say hi. Also, how about the homeschooled kids that needed the internet for research? I think US K-12 schools and the equivalent of that in other countries has online classes too, but not exactly sure.


There's a thing called work at home. Many times you'll have to use email and chat to speak with the employees, bosses, and clients/customers. Also, a lot of people like to work at home because it is more convenient for them in that they wouldn't have to travel far and can still take care the house and family at the same time. In fact, when I took an information systems class at uni my professor said how people who stayed at home are actually more productive than the people at work and able to get more done.

Even if you're not working at home, you'll still need the internet to check your emails and other things. Most workplace will restrict or make sure you don't go on websites you're not supposed to go to.


Like twocows said, many people find relationships on the internet. Whether it worked out for them or not is a whole other story. Also, how about the many dating and social networking websites that helps many people who are shy about going out? Those sites sometimes give the people a push to have them to find someone and eventually to go out.

As for me, like a few others mentioned, I'm able to balance out between real life, hobbies and the internet. I'm able to surf the web and chat with my online friends, get my studies done, spend time with my family and real life friends, do my fanfiction and making banners, and I have a part time job. There might be times I might suddenly surf the web too long or spend too much time with family and friends when I'm supposed to be doing something else, but at this moment I'm happy. Online I get to chat with my friends and a lot of times funny conversations happen. That also goes the same when I'm with my real life friends and family.


Yeah, the exceptions totally prove the rule.


For every 1 person who completes their degree online, there are tonnes that do it in reality.

For every person who is able to work from home, there are many many more who have no choice and must socialize as part of their job.


And you might meet people online. But you cannot have a complete, adult relationship online.


For 99% of us, we won't get a choice. We can't hide from the real world (and nor should we want to)

twocows
February 25th, 2010, 08:08 AM
And you might meet people online. But you cannot have a complete, adult relationship online.
Bull. I had one, and I know other people that have had them. And there are people who have gotten married as a result of "complete, adult relationships" online; I already linked to one of these stories. The only thing you don't get in an online relationship is sex, and that's the one thing that isn't actually necessary in a "complete, adult relationship."

magikarptrainer
February 25th, 2010, 02:17 PM
Bull. I had one, and I know other people that have had them. And there are people who have gotten married as a result of "complete, adult relationships" online; I already linked to one of these stories. The only thing you don't get in an online relationship is sex, and that's the one thing that isn't actually necessary in a "complete, adult relationship."

Well firstly, yes sex is necessary

secondly, once they got married, did they continue to only have their relationship online? Or was it a conventional relationship then?

twocows
February 25th, 2010, 03:25 PM
Well firstly, yes sex is necessary

secondly, once they got married, did they continue to only have their relationship online? Or was it a conventional relationship then?
It's often more convenient (and romantic) to live together once you're married. It doesn't necessarily have anything to do with sex. And no, sex is not necessary in a relationship. It's certainly nice, though.

Bay Alexison
February 25th, 2010, 10:21 PM
Yeah, the exceptions totally prove the rule.


For every 1 person who completes their degree online, there are tonnes that do it in reality.
Sometimes online courses are more convenient for a lot of people. I know many of my teachers, co-workers, and friends that take online classes due to them working and have other proprieties and they're doing fine. Sure you might not be able to interact with your professors and classmates face to face (unless there are certain courses where you would have to meet them up at least once), but the study materials shouldn't be that much different.

For every person who is able to work from home, there are many many more who have no choice and must socialize as part of their job.

I already mentioned most of those people work from home because it is more convenient for them so that they can take care of their family at the same time. Also I forgot one other reason is they have a disability of some sort (mental, physical, etc.) and they have no choice but to work at home. It's true maybe they won't be able to come face to face with their bosses and co-workers, but if they want to socialize there's always family, friends, neighbors, etc. they can go to.

And you might meet people online. But you cannot have a complete, adult relationship online.

*points you again to what twocows said and also in agreement sex isn't necessary in a relationship* >.>

For 99% of us, we won't get a choice. We can't hide from the real world (and nor should we want to)
I agree we can't hide from the real world and not have the internet take over our lives. However, just because we take online classes, work from home, and have an online relationship doesn't mean our socialization skills will deteriorate or we're doom to be alone and miserable forever. Many people who do those things are still able to socialize with other people face to face.

Astinus
February 25th, 2010, 11:24 PM
Well firstly, yes sex is necessary
No, it's really not. Romantic asexuals are those who seek out relationships, but don't want/need sex. And that's one example I have the knowledge to talk about.

secondly, once they got married, did they continue to only have their relationship online? Or was it a conventional relationship then?
When two people live together, they don't need to continue their relationship online. But when one member of the relationship is no longer living in the house (job reason or the military comes to mind), then the Internet is still there to allow for easy real-time conversations.

For every 1 person who completes their degree online, there are tonnes that do it in reality.
And? For that one person, it might not be easy to go to school in "reality" (whatever that means). Online courses, or at least the ones I took, weren't done at a set time. It was exactly like a forum, so I didn't have to continue to take time off from work to go to school. I could participate in the classroom at a convenient time for me, and the other twenty-ish students could participate when it was convenient for them. And things worked fine.

Yes, it is more common and more known for people to go to college at an actual campus, in an actual school building. But it's becoming more acceptable for people to go to school online because, surprise surprise!, technology is moving forward. It's even suggested to people who are busy with their jobs/families (that they might have started by meeting their partner online!) that they look into online courses because of how easy it is.

Are these people social shut-ins who spend all their time in front of the computer with a bag of chips as their only companion? Not at all. They're not going to school online because they don't want to talk to people.

For 99% of us, we won't get a choice. We can't hide from the real world (and nor should we want to)
Aw yeah. I get to break out some personal "cool story, bro!"

No, people don't get to honestly hide away from people. Some might like to for whatever reason (people are just honestly dreadful; social anxiety; depression; whatever the reason), but most of us do still enter society. I'm like that. I didn't always like spending time with people. But after spending time on the Internet, I learned communication skills and built up some confidence that now I can handle people better. (Like, you know, walking away when someone is being obtuse. My patience for people has risen greatly, though whether that's because of people online or customers at my store...idk.)

I know. I know. "But you're the exception! You don't prove the rule!"

At any rate, no the Internet isn't a horrible evil addiction for the majority of people on it. There will always be people who do have addictions to the Internet, or their computer games, or anything in the world. That's how it is. But you can't claim that just because some people prefer being on the Internet over going out with friends and being publicly social they are being detrimental to themselves.

Some people are addicted to the Internet =/= All people are addicted to the Internet

Some people have unhealthy relationships online =/= All people have unhealthy relationships online

I don't know. I just get the feeling that you don't quite see that it is possible to have friendships online/spend a part of your day online and still have the necessary skills to go out and deal with society at large.

magikarptrainer
February 26th, 2010, 12:36 AM
Don't really feel any necessity to reply to most of what was posted because it was blind flailing and/or nitpicking parts and taking them out of context.

But I do want to comment on


I don't know. I just get the feeling that you don't quite see that it is possible to have friendships online/spend a part of your day online and still have the necessary skills to go out and deal with society at large.


Obviously I know that. After all, I am online right now aren't I ?

Lie Ren
February 26th, 2010, 12:50 AM
I agree with that statement. It's been proved to me many times that people who stay online almost constantly aren't as happy. They might not realize it, but staying all isolated on the computer does have a negative effect on them.. that's why so many people on myspace are all emo all the time. Because they spent all their time there, and cut themselves off from other things that used to bring them joy.

People's lives need balance, and sometimes my own life gets out of balance, especially lately with the situation I'm in. Sometimes I'm left with nothing to do but sit online (because I have to stay home a lot to take of people), although after a certain point I tell myself "I need to do other things, even if it's just finding time to go out with friends for a few hours." ...so I make a time slot for that, and it does raise my mood.

The internet itself is found to be something fun, but so are videogames, and such.. it goes with the saying "Too much of a good thing", and when it's overkilled, take a break and go do something else. Refresh your mind set, and then you won't be as down.~

I believe that you can find happiness online, but just like everything else in life that bring you happiness, you need a break from it at times. if that doesn't happen, it's effect will backfire. xD;

Ninja Caterpie
February 26th, 2010, 02:07 AM
I agree with Drew. The internet is a good thing and it can raise your overall mood, but there is such thing as "too much of a good thing".

viridian doubletongue
February 26th, 2010, 03:07 AM
the general trend seems to be, those who become absorbed by the internet in a way which removes them from otherwise healthy and enjoyable social activity that one might partake in while NOT glued to a screen, GENERALLY seem very sad messed up soul sucked people that have a lot to hide and don't really truly connect with anyone. kinda need to think to yourself, you could probably be a LOT more fulfilled.

any online friendship just can't compare to a real one. it's just not complete. same with romantic relationships. and i'm not sure i believe the phenomenon known as romantic asexuality is prevalent. sex is fairly necessary. but if you never have, you'll never know.

Katie_Q
February 26th, 2010, 03:16 AM
Well I go on facebook and my email to make up for it. But I go on here when I need someone to talk to. Most of my friends, either live out of town, love partying (which I dont), Or I start hanging out with them, and then their other friends come to hang out with them and make me feel like poop. So I leave and go home, feeling lonely, ugly and stupid and go on the internet to cheer myself up. Seriously I prefer to do most of my face to face socialization at school or with my family....
Kind of weird since I'm in the "popular" group, but most of the guys in the group don't like me. I suppose I'm not girly and hot enough for them?

But I do still go out some weekends. If I was always on the internet I wouldn't be very happy.

Bay Alexison
February 26th, 2010, 10:32 AM
Obviously I know that. After all, I am online right now aren't I ?
If you know that, why you then keep saying, "Oh, for 1 person that took an online course, there are others took the REAL THANG!" >.>

Also, aren't you supposed to be offline for a bit to prove your point?



any online friendship just can't compare to a real one. it's just not complete. same with romantic relationships. and i'm not sure i believe the phenomenon known as romantic asexuality is prevalent. sex is fairly necessary. but if you never have, you'll never know.
Wiki says hi. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asexuality)

Urgh...is sex a big deal here now? @_@

Lana.
February 27th, 2010, 06:14 PM
Let me be very honest: I am not a person that easily makes friends IRL. Sure, I have acquaintances and people I talk to, and a group of kids I hang out with at school, but actual, die-hard friends are few and far in between for me. Heck, my two best friends are my older cousin and my mother. But I don't have a problem with that. Because most of the people that I've connected with - people that make me feel good inside, make me laugh and smile - are people I know through the Internet. They make me happy. Not to say I'm depressed without them, they just make my life a little brighter.

The fact I don't make friends easily doesn't come from my time on the 'net - it comes from the fact that I'm just not a social person. Not to mention most people I know are petty, lack ambition and/or intelligence, and/or plain unpleasant. Of course, there are the few that aren't like that, and they are the people I talk to. Even then, though, I just don't get close to them - it isn't that I can't, it's just that I have no desire to do so.

I am a loner, but I am not lonely.
I have fewer friends (IRL), but I'm not depressed.

*shrug* I'm happy with my life. That should be enough.

Ninja Caterpie
February 27th, 2010, 07:37 PM
I feel like using your own argument against you.

Yes, the internet can make you unhappy, but EXCEPTIONS DONT PROVE THE RULE YAYAYAYAYA

There are more people that have become happier from the internet than not.

By the way, you still haven't proven that a "real" social life is worth more than an internet one. All you've proven is that they can. A social life on the internet also can be worth as much as a "real" social life.

Ven
February 27th, 2010, 07:44 PM
^He just applied his brand of logic!
While I do agree with you, a lack of a real world social life, or interaction with other humans of the opposite or same sex in the flesh, can lead to a sexual depression.

Cherrim
February 27th, 2010, 08:01 PM
Now you're implying that a "real" (I use this word out of convenience, but it's misleading) social life is more valuable than an internet one, of which I have seen no evidence.
The more connections you have in "real life", the easier it is to be successful. Connections and networking are a huge part of how you find jobs and build up your career so it's important to talk to and befriend people offline. Sure, you can technically network online, and if you're in the tech industry anyway, it's probably not going to be a huge deal if you do most of your socializing online because it's a part of your career anyway. But having a wide network of online friends from various fandoms really isn't going to help you when you start trying to break into the industry you intend to work in, or need to find a roommate to cut living costs, or even just for valuable experience in dealing with people face-to-face.

I'm not saying online friends are bad--some of my closest friends are people I've met online--but there is definitely a big difference between online and offline friends. If you have both online and offline social lives, to some extent, then I honestly don't think it matters which one you prefer or which one makes a larger impact on you. But I definitely think it's unhealthy to have only an online social life. You've gotta learn to interact with other people IRL and an offline social life with like-minded peers is probably the best way.

But I'm kind of looking at this as someone who actually needs to get out and meet more people IRL since my offline social life has been pretty stifling lately. :( When you're in HS or something and a lot of the people you know IRL won't even be around in the next few years, I don't think there's any difference between an online/offline "life". Not interacting more often with the people you know from school is going to make it harder to interact with people when you're older (when it arguably matters more), but it's probably not worth it to break into a group and push yourself past your limit to make friends or attempt their idea of a social life if it's really just not your thing. And in that case, I think an online social life works fairly well and is definitely better than just sitting there talking to no one.

Basically what I'm saying is it's important to have some sort of a balance, but if you honestly cannot have an offline social life for whatever reason, online is a decent substitute. However it shouldn't be the only thing you do because actual human interaction simply cannot be replicated through text. There comes a time when you actually have to enter the real world and if you only know how to get along with people and make friends through text online, it'll be a huge reality check.

Ruphire
February 27th, 2010, 08:18 PM
Wouldn't it be not using the internet that would make me have less friends, depressed, etc..,?

twocows
February 27th, 2010, 09:49 PM
Don't really feel any necessity to reply to most of what was posted because it was blind flailing and/or nitpicking parts and taking them out of context.
No it wasn't. There were three separate, legitimate arguments presented to you by different people (more by now), and none took anything out of context or "flailed" or "nitpicked."

(shortened)
I'm not saying that offline interaction doesn't have its place, but I refuse to accept that you cannot be happy without it, or even that it is more valuable than online interaction. There are too many differences between online and "real" interaction to really make a decent comparison. Trying to compare the two is like trying to compare apples to oranges; neither can be declared "better" than the other because they are too different to make such a judgment.

flight
March 6th, 2010, 07:30 AM
Well I can say this: if it wasn't for the internet, I don't know where I would be at this moment. I've learned a lot of things about proper social etiquette(unbelievably enough) and lately, I have at least, been slight more open to other people. So I don't think the internet necessarily triggers depression the longer you stay on it, though that really varies from person to person and how they perceive the internet to be to them.

Second Coming of Jebus
March 6th, 2010, 08:46 AM
Who needs real friends when you've got hand lotion and tissues? They're always ready to bail me out of sticky situations...so to speak/type.

THANK YOU INTERNET!

jasonresno
March 6th, 2010, 09:15 AM
I'm a fan of escapism and I use the internet for that reason. You can untie yourself from the trappings of your life and become whoever you want to be. I'd argue the other way around that the majority of the internet is used for social interaction (facebook, blogs, myspace) and that it is just becoming an integral part of the way we communicate.