Social Network Users Feel Connected, But Not Face-to-Face

The majority of American social network users feel more connected to people, although they say they are not seeing people more, according to the new Harris Poll.

The study, which was conducted in September among 2,258 adults aged 18 and over, reveals that social networks are bringing people together, just not face-to-face. Nearly three in five online adults (57 percent) say they feel more connected to friends and family now than they previously did, and 56 percent say they stay in contact more now than in the past.

While Americans may feel more connected to friends and family, they’re not visiting with people face-to-face. Nearly 58 percent of the respondents say they are up-to-date with news about family and friends but don’t interact with them personally or individually. A majority (54 percent) agree that they have had less face-to-face contact with friends.

The study also revealed that social media users have preferences for how they want to keep in touch with people. Nearly 44 percent rather interact with acquaintances using social media instead of face-to-face, 23 percent say the same about friends, and 19 percent say the same about interacting with family.

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