Okay, so there’s a study that says that Facebook ruins relationships because it replaces the medium of being there with an actual person with textual communication over the internet. What complete and total crock.
Most people who actually believe this are not using Facebook correctly. It’s not supposed to be a replacement with meeting with your friends. It’s not supposed to be a replacement for calling your friends or actually meeting them. It’s supposed to be on the side of this – it’s yet another avenue of communication that allows for extreme rich media (ie sharing pictures and sharing music and what not).
For instance, I can always call one of my best friends who goes to University of Arkansas, but why? For one thing, if I call him willy nilly, I might just be disturbing his schedule. So, I don’t. Instead, I text him or leave him Facebook messages – that way, he can get back to me on his own time. Plus most of the time I would call him, it’d be over really silly things – such as beverage recommendations and such. Why would I call him telling him that I just had a Shiner Smokehaus, and the taste was a bit disturbing? It would just be a five minute conversation, and a waste of his time and mine.
If anything, Facebook keeps relationships stronger by allowing both members to work on said relationship on their own time. It also keeps relationships stronger by allowing smaller conversations through the use of sharing knowledge. For instance, most “conversations” on Facebook end up being “Hey, I found this (funny/distrubing/awesome) (video/blog)!”, and the response to said video or blog. Why would I travel out of my way to show my friend this video of kittens frolicking in a grass field, especially if my friend was a student at another institution? Why would I call him up, spending both money and time, to call him and tell him to search on Youtube for “kittens frolic”?
Point is, you really shouldn’t think of replace verbal communication with Facebook. That’s not good – humans are built to be social creatures. The sound of people talking are literally food for our souls, whether it’s people yelling about how the President is a liar, to the sound of your crazy friend talking about frolicking kittens.
Like all tools, it’s not useful if you don’t use it correctly. You’ll find that your attempt at using a hammer to screw in a screw will be extremely futile. You need to have a toolbox of different communication avenues if you want to keep your friends. Go out of your way to meet your friends face to face. Have something urgent you want to tell them, or make urgent plans? Give them a call. Want to just say hey? Or share a funny internet video so they can easily view it? Use Facebook.