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date: 22 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter provides an overview of the social consequences of online interaction. Research has provided mixed evidence about whether online interaction is helpful or harmful for well-being and social connectedness. This chapter highlights the factors that moderate the influence of online social interaction on outcomes, with a particular focus on user behaviors. The Interpersonal Connection Behaviors Framework suggests that the positive consequences of any given online interaction depend on the extent to which that interaction serves a relational purpose. Online interactions that promote connection build relationships and increase well-being via increased relational closeness and quality through processes such as self-disclosure and social support. Online interactions that do not promote connection are likely to fall prey to disadvantages like social comparison or loneliness.

Keywords: Internet, relationship, online interaction, belongingness, social support

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