Technology and social networking sites

How Does Technology/Smart Phones and Social Networking Sites Affect Romantic Relationships?


Electronic means of communication have redefined the way people interact with one another. Social networking, e-mail, internet forums, and instant messaging have added completely new meaning to interpersonal interaction. Similar to every other communication technology, it has been adapted into daily life and daily communication. These technologies present innovative ways for persons in search of romantic relationships to be in touch via text messaging, chat, e-mail, as well as social networks. Conversely, contemporary technologies may also bear negative effects such as straining relationships as well as limited personal contact. The exposure of young people to social network sites such as MySpace, Fraudster, and Facebook is increasing, along with the likelihood for such engagement to generate problems in romantic relationships (Sudweeks 105). This paper posits to investigate how technology/smartphones and social networking sites affect romantic relationships.

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Sudweeks, G. Culture, Communication, and Technology: Moving Towards another-cultural          Universal Village, New York: University of New York Press.2002. Print.

According to Sudweeks, the negative effects demonstrated by the internet in regard to romantic relationships are demonstrated in the perception of Jewish rabbis, who in 2000 proclaimed a prescription of the Internet in every Jewish home. The rabbis affirmed that the internet was increasingly more hazardous than television. The television had suffered outlawing thirty years earlier. The Council described the Internet as the most widespread source of temptation. The Council proclaimed the internet as a lethal poison, which obliterates the human soul. According to Sudweeks, the rabbis judged the internet as a disgrace.

Barak, R. “Commitment versus Anonymity: The Hazard of Education on the Internet”,     Information and Ethics 1. 2(2008): 21. Print.

According to the author, the Internet promotes western lifestyles. A greater part of the websites exhibits different characteristics of the western society whereby romantic relationships are more or less casual. This has made individuals in other parts of the world to perceive the West as a place of absolute freedom. This is with respect to the actuality that, in the predominantly Muslim and conservative parts of the world, romantic relationships can only be based on the cultural norms. These cultural norms are regarded as outdated by contemporary youth.

Inglehart, R. Culture Shift in Sophisticated Industrial World, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University   Press. 2001. Print.

According to the Inglehart, as a result of the Internet, different less industrial countries have become vulnerable to foreign prevailing cultures. The state of affairs has over the years provoked the attention of scholars in the developing countries. The majority of these academics happen to be concerned that indigenous ways of life may be homogenized. They have as a result, presented proposals to respond to the apparent cultural invasion.

Lusoli, F. “Mobilization & Participation Online: Hope, Reality & Hype”, Journal of           Computer-Mediated Communication 56. 2(2009): 52. Print.

According to Lusoli, participation in online romantic relationships rarely occurs in the less affluent sections of the society. The author describes Internet access as uneven among the populace. The author alleges that Internet access is concentrated amongst young persons from the affluent sections in society.

Loumakis, D.  “Who Participates & Why? An Investigation of Citizens Use of the Internet”,        Social Science I.T Review21. 1(20011): 27. Print.

According to Loumakis, the digital divide leads to a concentration of technology and smartphones in the same hands. This means that people, who are inclined to be active in online romantic relationships, also possess access to contemporary technology such as smartphones. They are yet the same persons who benefit from other opportunities accessible over the Internet.


Romantic Relationships and Technology. It is essential to investigate whether social networking sites cause romantic relationships to be detrimental. It is evident that social networking sites facilitate persons in romantic relationships, to discover information concerning their partner. It is usually easy to evaluate what kind of person someone may be. This would be based on how the person interacts with other people through social networking sites. This is possible devoid of having any tangible, physical evidence. It is also possible for persons in romantic relationships to monitor each other, through comments, wall posts, as well as photos online. On the other hand, this scrutiny may lead to over-analysis of matters whereby matters are taken out of context. This usually results in jealousy, which may be the termination of a romantic relationship (Lusoli 52).

Little is known concerning the overlaps between the offline and online worlds. A number of scholars have investigated the links between the intrusion from social networking sites, jealousy that occurs in romantic relationships, as well as outcomes of a romantic relationship that are online based. It has become evident that intrusion from social networking sites is linked to frustrations in romantic relationships, through jealous cognitions as well as, surveillance behaviours. The outcomes from several studies demonstrate that the likelihood of high levels of intrusion from social networking sites overflowing into romantic relationships results in problems such as dissatisfaction and jealousy. The outcomes have connotations for romantic relationships and users of social networking sites in general(Sudweeks 120).

Contemporary technologies facilitate persons in romantic relationships to be in contact with one another than previously. This may lead to heightened expectations as well as conflict. With the rising use of smartphones and email, persons in romantic relationships usually expect an instant answer to communication. A deferred answer or none at all usually leads to anger and suspicion (Loumakis 27).

Romantic Partners Get To Know Each Other Faster. The brilliant thing in relation to the internet is that romantic partners can be connected at all times. Such partners are always obliged to update their profiles in the social networking sites with all of the most minuscule fragments of information. Such partners permit their followers and friends to know just about everything concerning them. This sharing of information contributes to the speed at which people get to know their romantic partners. Through cyber-stalking, people can access immense details concerning other people than they would learn on their first date. The substantial amount of information makes a partner feel as though they have known each other for a long time. This helps partners in bonding as well as the existence of deep emotional attachments following brief dating episodes (Barak 21).

Romantic partners constantly connect with minimal effort. Prior to the internet dawn, it used to be difficult for persons in romantic relationships to stay connected. Romantic partners in long-distance affairs were forced to write letters, or make phone calls. Nowadays, most of such persons can text with their phones, utilize g-chat on their smartphones or mobile devices. However, this constant communication may as well have negative effects. People lose the factor of mystery by talking so much to their partners in the premature phase of a romantic relationship. This may even make several people feel as if they are being regularly monitored, and this leads to feelings of antipathy (Inglehart 68).

Demerits of technology/smartphones and social networking sites in romantic relationships. As a result of a number of surveys, women demonstrated that they need a few months prior to progressing into physical, romantic relationships. However, topical studies show that women who find themselves in intense contact with their romantic partners through social networks may decide to engage in sexual relationships after a small number of dates (Sudweeks 125).

Technology/smartphones and social networking sites have made matters appalling for numerous individuals in the event of break-ups in romantic relationships. During a romantic relationship, several people choose to deeply engrain their romantic partners in social networks. These partners are found on their friends’ list on social networking sites. Consequently, it may prove to be difficult to maintain proper distance following a breakup. It does not help in coming to terms with emotional attachments if one sees their former romantic partners’ profile image or the photographs from their most recent vacations. It is evident that former partners in a romantic relationship would not desire instant updates from their former partners. This would mainly be in regard to the effect that, they are currently claiming a new online relationship status. The problem comes when even though one partner may have deleted their former partner from their friend list, they might stumble upon their remarks on another friends’ status.


Even though feelings of social relationships may improve psychological health, there are consequences to individuals as well as their intimate relationships, if they build up a dependence on technology/smartphones and social networking sites for these positive results. In addition, as more people, most of whom are liable to have long-term, romantic relationships, enter the world of social networking sites, there is an increasing likelihood that these relationships may be stressed and manipulated by dissatisfaction and jealousy. Future studies may explore the degree to which a partner’s high or low involvement with social networking sites increases, or buffers against the impact of such usage on their romantic relationship.


Works Cited

Barak, R. “Commitment versus Anonymity: The Hazard of Education on the Internet”,     Information and Ethics 1. 2(2008): 21. Print.

Inglehart, R. Culture Shift in Sophisticated Industrial World, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University   Press. 2001. Print.

Loumakis, D.  “Who Participates & Why? An Investigation of Citizens Use of the Internet”,        Social Science I.T Review21. 1(20011): 27. Print.

Lusoli, F. “Mobilization & Participation Online: Hope, Reality & Hype”, Journal of          Computer-Mediated Communication 56. 2(2009): 52. Print.

Sudweeks, G. Culture, Communication, Technology: Moving Towards an Inter-cultural   Universal Village, New York: University of New York Press.2002. Print.

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