Anonymous:
Has the Internet Affected You?

Recently, issues of how the Internet has made an impact on interpersonal relationships ,have given cause for alarm. With the induction of the Internet, into people’s homes , the Internet is becoming the way people prefer to meet or seek their soul mate’s, confidant’s, friends and romantic interests. People are going to the Internet and spending hours online chatting and instant messaging. Forms of entertainment are also sought online ,which range from music ,videos , gossip, movie listings, concerts , etc. The Internet was initially designed to aid people in the enhancement of acquiring rapid information and communication purposes . The way we used to meet our companions and friends was face-to-face, or over some type of small talk. Eventhough the advancement of technology has come a long way , I believe that the Internet’s impact on interpersonal relationships is negative because of hidden danger’s, trust issue’s , and deceptive behavior from frequent Internet use. For instance, parents not trusting their adolescent’s truthfulness of the content that they are viewing ,and mistrusting their spouses.

Reports of adolescents online frequently encountering pedophiles has increased over time. The program series that aired on NBC’s Dateline ,“To Catch A Predator”, in September 2004 , featured men going to meet with young girls and boys. Upon arriving those men were surprised by reporters and undercover officials waiting to arrest them. The airing of this segment caused more concern among parents and awakened them to be more attentive (Bahney). This program proved to parents that the breakdown in communication, with their adolescents may be causing them to seek out attention online. Because of the content of their conversations, they deceptively hide the information from their parents, creating trust issues with their parents.

Predators surf the various Internet sites like Myspace.com or Friendster.com. Because this type of website is frequented mostly by adolescents, it’s a predators preference. This creates a dangerous atmosphere for adolescents while online. Websites like MySpace ,created in 2003, are under constant monitoring (Baney). Websites like Friendster.com, Tribe.net , Xanga. com and Meetup.com , are currently popular choices for adolescent socializing. According to Bahney these websites have at least 60 million registered users.

The dangers of the Internet has caused officials to reach out to areas where they can speak to groups of adolescents. The dangers online are not obvious to everyone. Some parents are not even aware of what is happening online. According to Bahney ,at Packer High School ,in Irvine California a meeting was held for the parents and adolescents discussing the dangers of the Internet. The meeting was conducted by Steve Wolf ,an Irvine , California Police Officer. The school’s newspaper polled students afterwards and reported that at least 80% of student’s parents had installed some type of restriction to their MySpace page , in which previously there was only 14% of adolescent households with restrictions in place (Baney).

Secondly, the Internet has an strong effect on close relationships, especially when it comes to family and friends. The HomeNet project by Kraut in 1998 and a survey by Nie and Erbring in 2000/ 2001 reported, that frequent use of the Internet had negative outcomes for the user .“Such as increases in loneliness and neglect of existing close relationships”( Bargh and McKenna). Because of frequent use of the Internet less time is being spent with family and friends. The bonds that we once shared are being challenged by online relationships. According to Nie and Erbring, researchers, information reported from a “U.S. nationwide survey of about 4000 people concluded that heavy Internet use resulted in less time associated with family and friends.”(Bargh and McKenna).

Next, the Internet has made it is easier to chat about personal issues with a complete stranger . It is so much easier to leave out the important details in a conversation and hide your true feelings. The person on the other side of the screen can’t console you ,they can only advise you. Personal contact , or in better words , or touching a person ,is the closeness that people miss out on , when developing a relationship online. Sociologists at Duke University in Arizona found that “most adults only have two people they can talk to about the most important subjects in their lives“ for example ,medical issues and final arrangements. “About one-quarter have no close confidants at all “(Fountain).

Finally, spending too much time on the Internet can cause problems in marriages and established relationships. According to Jeffery McQuillen “the absence of the characteristics associated with face-to-face communication can result in a loss of fidelity and an increase in the psychological distance between interact ants.” The Internet makes it easier to commit infidelities and in some ways it encourages deceptive behavior‘s among spouses. For example, it is much easier to hide infidelities behind a computer screen, and disguising it as work. Trying to justify time and whereabouts to your spouse takes more lying , practice and face-to-face justification. Emotions are harder to hide when there is a face-to-face confrontation. According to s study by Walther & Tidwell in 1995, state that “on-line systems do not have the nonverbal code that is present in Face-to-Face conversations” ( McQuiillen).

With so many temptations ,the ability to engage in one’s fantasy ,completely unknown by their significant other, is overwhelming. People enter porn sites and live out their fantasies. It’s like the Internet is a forbidden fruit. So trust in the relationship is broken ,and breakdown’s in communication are formed. One definition of the communication process ,according to Walther and Tidwell in 1996 , the asynchronous benefits permit’s the participants time to plan and edit comments more mindfully (McQuillen).

People leave out important information over the Internet about themselves, which leaves the opponent believing the best or worst about them. The sender or receiver could say that they are wealthy, exceptionally attractive and the best catch ever. Trust is an important element in forming relationships and maintaining them. The World Value Survey says “ Can people generally be trusted, or is it that you can’t be too careful in dealing with people?”(Bahney). In short this means that people have tendencies to stretch the truth and you should always be careful with whom you deal with.

The evidence shown has proven that the Internet has rightly given us cause for much concern. There are some good advantages that come from the Internet. Such as , relationships formed , that in some cases have ended up marriage, finding a soul mate, and the exposure to new people and their culture’s are rewarding in itself. Some other good advantages are that the Internet can help people research items ,like medical problems and remedies. The Internet even allows people to stay in touch with distant family, friends and significant others. In a study in 2002 by McKenna and Bargh polled about 600 people and a substantial number reported that they had gotten close with someone they met online and more than 50% of those new relationships have bloomed into “real-life” situations including marriage (Barghand & McKenna). Granted that the Internet has many positive attributes. Based on the evidence that I have gathered, the negative outcomes outweigh the positives. People are incorporating the Internet into daily life. People will continue to suffer the negative side effects of the growth of the digital age and adjust.

The issue of the negative impacts of the Internet on meaningful interpersonal relationships is indeed an issue that needs to be addressed. There are so many negative effects occurring from this digital age that solutions are few. I’m sure that the Internet has affected you or at least someone you know, maybe it was a positive outcome or a negative one, but you have been effected in some way. It is up to us to save our kids, personal relationships ,or business relationships and we must set boundaries when it comes to the amount of time we frequent the Internet. Whatever the ending result, we will learn how to deal with it and move on to the next program.
Your essay is very long, so I'm going to start with the first paragraph only:

Recently, issues of how the Internet has made an impact on interpersonal relationships ,have given cause for alarm. With the induction of the Internet, into people’s homes , the Internet is becoming the way people prefer to meet or seek their soul mate’s, confidant’s, friends and romantic interests. People are going to the Internet and spending hours online chatting and instant messaging. Forms of entertainment are also sought online ,which range from music ,videos , gossip, movie listings, concerts , etc. The Internet was initially designed to aid people in the enhancement of acquiring rapid information and for communication purposes . The way we used to meet our companions and friends was face-to-face, or over some type of small talk. Eventhough the advancement of technology has come a long way , I believe that the Internet’s impact on interpersonal relationships is negative because of hidden danger’s, trust issue’s , and deceptive behavior from frequent Internet use. For instance, parents not trusting their adolescent’s truthfulness regarding the content that they are viewing ,and mistrusting their spouses.

There are three errors your repeat frequently, but not every time:

1) You have formed plurals with 's. This is not correct. souls mates and confidants should be formed just like you did in friends and romantic interests.

2) Frequently, your punctuate markes are in the wrong place. It is not word [space] punctuation next word, but word punctuation[space]next word. In other words, not "way ,I" but "way, I"

3) You have commas thrown in where they are not needed. For example, "...relationships, have given" - you should not separate the subject from the verb with a comma.
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