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Sydney Lehr

Bibliographic Essay
Research Techniques & Technologies
Leslie Drake
The Effects of Social Media on Relationships
This research paper will give insight into a question that has now be around long, but is
extremely prevalent in todays culture, and is ever growing; what are the effects of
social media on relationships. This paper will give a look in to how things like Myspace,
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat effect business, romantic, and family
relationships. In the past ten year social media has quickly become an intricate part of
day-to-day life. It is a way to stay in touch with people who live far away, it can be news
source, and has even become a place of business. These days more people have some sort
of social media than not, and the most prevalent it becomes the bigger effect it has on
peoples personal lives; a big part of that being their relationships. No matter if it is a
current or future business relationships, dating, committed, or spousal romantic
relationships, or immediate or extended family relationships. This paper will reference
many scholarly articles, journals and studies regarding the use of social media and
relationships. These sources use some generationally specific language, but are fairly
easy for the average level reader to comprehend. The goal of this essay is to show people
how social media is impacting their social lifes and any relationships they many hold.


We define social network sites as web-based services that allow individuals to

(1) construct a public or semi-public profile within a bounded system, (2) articulate a list
of other users with whom they share a connection (Boyd H. 2006). Social network sites
or SNS have grown into such a large part of every day life in the past decade. The
rapidity of its growth makes for major effects on many aspects of life, and one the has
been thoroughly discussed is the effect SNS has on relationships. Those of romance,
family, and business even. Many studies have been preformed in the past ten years to
observe the ways SNS have impacted the various relationships.

Social Networking Sites

The top three SNS being discussed in this essay are Facebook, Myspace, and
Twitter. Although some studies do incorporate other SNS these have been the most
predominate within the past decade and thus the best to study and observe to get the most
accurate results.
Family Relationships
The definition for family are (1) a minimum of two individuals (2) connected or not
connected by kinship, blood, marital status, and/or commitment (3) may live in the same
house, and (4) express commitment to act and behave with each other and the larger
community as a unit by spending time together, investing in tangible outcomes such as
children (biological or not), property, and finances and/or intangible behaviors such as
demonstration of love, caring, and support (Matthews-Juarez, P.2013). This journals

definition of family encompasses everything family can be. This definition works well
with the findings in these studies. According to Padilla-Walker L.M. (2012) findings
suggest that family media use is positively associated with overall family connection.
But, it was also discovered that, social networking was actually negatively related to
family connection from the view of the adolescent.
The study in this article was over many families from different walks of life, and their
discoveries have shown a positive correlation between family members and SNS use, but
no so much in the eyes of adolescent family members. A second study in this article
shows, although 65% of adolescents are friends with their parents on Facebook, about
13% actually deny friend requests from their parents (Padilla-Walker L.M. 2012). These
results are interesting, because they show that although the majority of adolescents
involved in the study found SNS were a negative effect on the family, the majority still
friend their parents on the social networking sites.

Romantic Relationships
Most individuals use SNS to maintain or deepen existing relationships, rather than
to initiate new relationships (Hall, J. A. 2014). This study looks at people using SNS as
well as online dating sites and the results show the majority of people using social media
are not using them to create new romantic interests, but to maintain or enhance
relationships they already have. But, according to Wagner, L. A. (2015), They update
statuses rather than meet for coffee; this does not mean that human beings are less social,

however. Consequently these sources say that social networking sites are not hurting or
damaging romantic relationship, but in many way SNS are keeping them at bay. These
articles show no negative long or short-term effects on romantic relationships.
Business Relationships
The business world is evolving almost as quickly as the world of technology. Not
because it can, but because it has to. According to (Parker, M. 2014) even the business of
printing is utilizing SNS to keep their business afloat. Print is a dying art, and social
networking sites are the future. By using SNS these print companies build relationships
with costumers. The ways they do this are by posting about their business day-to-day
business, posting about promotion, sending out blasts on SNS which is essentially paying
for people who do not follow them to see a post, and by answering questions asked
through SNS in a timely and efficient manor. Conversational human voice was
perceived to be higher for Twitter pages of organizations with a human presence than for
those with an organizational presence. Providing a human presence on social media
through the use of social media managers avatars and names appeared to promote
favorable organizationpublic relationships and positive communication (Park, H. 2013).
This article uses equations in their three studies on organization communication and its
relation to social media. The complicated equations solve for the differences between
organizations that do and do not use SNS. Its findings in each of the three studies are that
those organizations that have been utilizing SNS are in a better place with their
consumers in the sense that consumers see organizations as more personable. This usually

make people much more apt to become loyal customers to such organizations rather that
one that is not relatable, or comes of as unfriendly to their customers.
Social networking sites have become apart of everyday life in todays day
and age. Although, it is still changing and growing every day its effect on family
relationships can be very positive for those families who cannot always be together, but
for families with teenage member SNS can put an unneeded strain. When comes to
romantic relationship there is no evidence that social networking sites have any negative
effect. All evidence points to a positive relationship. SNS can help couples stay in touch
when they are in long distance relationships, and gives a good outlet for those to maintain
and enhance their relationship. Businesses although they did not have much of a choice
but to; have embraced social networking sites. The evidence shows only positive effects
on business as well. Even with printing companies, which some may have once thought
to be SNSs biggest rival. Consumers see businesses that use SNS as more human and
relatable. This in turn leads to businesses gaining more repeat customers. In all the
research over the effects of SNS on family, romantic, and business relationships there is
for the most part only positive effects on each of these type of relationships.

Work Cited
Rodgers, R. F., McLean, S. A., & Paxton, S. J. (2015). Longitudinal Relationships
among Internalization of the Media Ideal, Peer Social Comparison, and Body
Dissatisfaction: Implications for the Tripartite Influence Model. Developmental
Psychology, 51(5), 706-713.
Wagner, L. A. (2015). When Your Smartphone Is Too Smart for Your Own Good: How
Social Media Alters Human Relationships. Journal Of Individual Psychology, 71(2), 114121.
Parker, M. (2014). Using Social Media to Build More Profitable Print Relationships.
(cover story). Seybold Report: Analyzing Publishing Technologies, 14(21), 1-9.

Billedo, C. J., Kerkhof, P., & Finkenauer, C. (2015). The use of social networking sites
for relationship maintenance in long-distance and geographically close romantic
relationships. Cyberpsychology, Behavior And Social Networking, 18(3), 152-157.

Sinclair, H. C., Felmlee, D., Sprecher, S., & Wright, B. L. (2015). Dont Tell Me Who I
Cant Love: A Multimethod Investigation of Social Network and Reactance Effects on
Romantic Relationships. Social Psychology Quarterly, 78(1), 77-99.
Ridder, S., & van Bauwel, S. (2015). Youth and intimate media cultures: Gender,
sexuality, relationships, and desire as storytelling practices in social networking sites.
Communications: The European Journal Of Communication Research, 40(3), 319-340.

Park, H., & Lee, H. (2013). Show us you are real: the effect of human-versusorganizational presence on online relationship building through social networking sites.
Cyberpsychology, Behavior And Social Networking, 16(4), 265-271.
Boyd, H.(2006). Social Network Sites: Definition, History, and Scholarship. Department
of Telecommunication, Information Studies, and Media Michigan State University.
SPRECHER, S., & FELMLEE, D. (2000). Romantic partners'perceptions of social
network attributes with the passage of time and relationship transitions. Personal
Relationships, 7(4), 325-340.
Matthews-Juarez, P., Juarez, P. D., & Faulkner, R. T. (2013). Social Media and Military
Families: A Perspective. Journal Of Human Behavior In The Social Environment, 23(6),
Padilla-Walker, L. M., Coyne, S. M., & Fraser, A. M. (2012). Getting a High-Speed
Family Connection: Associations Between Family Media Use and Family Connection.
Family Relations, 61(3), 426-440.
Aichner, T., & Jacob, F. (2015). Measuring the degree of corporate social media use.
International Journal Of Market Research, 57(2), 257-275.