A report came out yesterday stating, “Social networking sites such as Facebook could raise your risk of serious health problems by reducing levels of face-to-face contact.”
What I don’t understand is why they are blaming isolation issues on sites such as Facebook and MySpace?
As one reader suggests, it’s not fair to point fingers at these sites for lack of personal interaction. My 50-something-year-old mother (who’s going to kill me for that) wanted to go back to school and get a second degree. Because she has a full-time job, she takes her college classes online. So what’s the difference between catching up with old friends over the Internet and class assignments in online chat rooms?
Dr. Sigman says these sites are working backwards. He claims these sites are not bringing people together that they are actually displacing our interaction.
I’m sorry Doc, but I have to disagree. Like the other millions of people on Facebook I now stay in touch with friends that I never would have if not for these tools. Yes, I’m not talking to them face-to-face every day, but if I saw them in person it would not be weird for me to give them a hug after two years of not talking because Facebook updates me on their lives like I am a part of it.
In Sigman’s defense, it is important to have personal interaction. But let’s not blame networking sites alone. With video games, smart phones, Internet shopping, online education, you don’t even have to go to the doctors anymore with WebMD, there are many reasons why we are losing touch, literally.