Effects of Increasing Digital Connections on Relationships and Community

A Facebook touchgraph shows connections between friends, places and companies on the social network. - Flickr user  Steve Jurvetson

A Facebook touchgraph shows connections between friends, places and companies on the social network.

Flickr user Steve Jurvetson

Effects of Increasing Digital Connections on Relationships and Community

Americans are more digitally connected than ever before. Diane and guests discuss the effects of those increasing virtual connections on personal relationships and American community.

A revolution in technology has connected us online more than ever before: Nearly 60 percent of Americans now have a Facebook account. Digital connections have replaced informal interaction with neighbors and acquaintances. And a quarter of Americans say they have no best friend to confide in. Some caution the decline in face-to-face interactions has led to polarization and congressional gridlock, while others argue that digital connections provide invaluable connections with far-flung family and friends. Diane and guests discuss how virtual relationships affect real life connections and building community.

Guests

Marc Dunkelman

research fellow, Brown University's Taubman Center for Public Policy and American Institutions and senior fellow, the Clinton Foundation; author of "The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transformation of American Community" (August 2014)

Susan Pinker

developmental psychologist, columnist and broadcaster; author of "The Village Effect: How Face-to-Face Contact Can Make Us Healthier, Happier, and Smarter" (August 2014)

Zeynep Tufekci

assistant professor, School of Information, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. She writes regularly on her blog: Technosociology.org

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