the road ahead

Virtual Friends?
April 20, 2009, 9:37 pm
Filed under: business, ministry, spirituality


As we connect into numerous social-networking sites and share our lives with others online, I have to wonder what kind of relationships really are developing. Can we truly call those on Facebook our “friends”? What about Twitter and our followers? Remember the song “Friends” and how it says, “Friends are friends forever”? Is that really true for our virtual pals?

I read an interesting post recently about Facebook friends. According to it, my friends on Facebook fall into three categories: my longtime friends and family scattered all over the world, my acquaintances or business relationships, and finally strangers who for some reason want to connect with me. Personally, I really don’t try to separate out these relationships. Actually they are not that different from my physical, face-to-face relationships.

So, in my case, I consider my virtual friendships to be as important as my personal ones. What do you think? It’s a brave new world!


2 Comments so far
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personally i’m not on social networks to connect to people i don’t know and will most of the time not accept someone i don’t know personally. i am however connected to people through an online bible study that i’ll probably not ever meet in person. it has been interesting because in some way everyone is more open in that group because there is not personal connection but there is also a sense of disconnectedness. my desire is to learn how to minister in those types of environments.

Comment by julie

Saying that you consider virtual friendships to be as important as personal ones is a very interesting and powerful statement.

I can understand having that sentiment regarding the first two categories of friends you referenced. With established relationships, social media is just another way of communicating, staying in touch, sharing information, etc. But,do you really put “strangers” on an equal footing with the others? Can you give some examples of how you’re doing that?

Also, would you mind if I turned your statement into a Twitter question: “Do you consider your virtual friendships as important as your personal ones?” I would source you and then blog on the results.

Comment by Gordon Marcy

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