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Interpersonal Communication: Family and the Digital Age

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Wanda Lamb

on 4 November 2012

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Transcript of Interpersonal Communication: Family and the Digital Age

Interpersonal Communication: Family Family and the Digital Age How does the digital
age affect interpersonal communication in families? What is the importance of computer related communication in today's society where family is concerned? By: Bethany Ross, Natasha Poe, & Wanda Lamb Ivy Tech Community College CMC reduces miles between family members to seconds. Families can share more, more often. CMC can affect what families talk about and how they talk about it, even during face to face encounters. This video is to show the perspective of others who have done projects on this topic. This video is to show the perspective of others who have done projects on this topic. The internet and the mobile phone have disrupted many of our conventional understandings of ourselves and our relationships, raising anxieties and hopes about their effects on our lives. (Baym, 2010) CMC in families is the new norm.
“Both spouses use the internet in 76% of married-with-children households, as do 84% of their children aged 7-17. Indeed, 65% of married-with-children households with a child between the ages of 7-17 contain a husband, wife, and child who all use the internet” (Wellman, Smith, Wells, & Kennedy, 2008). The Internet and the cell phone, both technologies that seem to blur traditional boundaries by which we have understood communication. The distinctions between communicating with one or communicating with many are lost. A strict since of privacy and publicity is blurred, and the ability to extend communication across space and time in new ways and shapes the forms of communication. (Baym, 2010) CMC can improve connections
within the family. “One-third (33%) of online adults say that the internet has improved their connections with friends “a lot,” and
nearly one-quarter (23%) say that it
has greatly improved their
connections with members of
their family” (Wellman, Smith,
Wells, & Kennedy, 2008). CMC can deepen the wounds of family estrangements. “…in a social network world, estrangement is being redefined… Relatives can get vivid glimpses of one another’s lives through Facebook updates, Twitter feeds and Instagram pictures of a grandchild or a wedding rehearsal dinner. And those glimpses are often painful reminders of what they have lost.” (Saint Louis, 2012) CMC can lead to family discord... Some young-adult internet users report that “…online interactions with family members had led to greater stress, since they had made contributions to online groups that their family members had seen and disapproved of” (Goby, 2011). CMC can bring virtual threats into family life.
“…more than 75% of 14- to 24-yearolds believe that digital abuse is a serious problem for people their age” (Siegle, 2010). CMC can bring virtual threats into family life. “…you don’t have to
be able to physically overpower your victim—a person can simply log on, create a new identity, and bully away. . . .” (Siegle, 2010). CMC in families is the new norm.
“Both spouses use the internet in 76% of married-with-children households, as do 84% of their children aged 7-17. Indeed, 65% of married-with-children households with a child between the ages of 7-17 contain a husband, wife, and child who all use the internet” (Wellman, Smith, Wells, & Kennedy, 2008). CMC
can improve
connections
within the family.
“One-third (33%) of
online adults say that the
internet has improved their
connections with friends “a lot,”
and nearly one-quarter (23%) say that
it has greatly improved their connections
with members of their family” (Wellman,
Smith, Wells, & Kennedy, 2008).
CMC
brings families
together in “Hey,
look at this!” moments.
“Although families often
have the means to retreat to
their technological “neutral corners”
and engage in screen time in isolation,
many go online with others. Some 52% of
internet users who live with a spouse and one
or more children go online with another person
at least a few times a week” (Wellman, Smith, Wells,
& Kennedy, 2008). CMC in families can
replace traditional, face
to face family interactions.
“Those [families] with multiple
communication devices are
somewhat less likely to eat dinner
with other household members and
somewhat less likely to report high
levels of satisfaction with their
family and leisure time than are
families with lower levels of
technology ownership”
(Wellman, Smith,
Wells, &
Kennedy,
2008). We still have our reservations on whether media is good or bad on communications between family members because on one hand you have the interference of time spent with people in face to face interactions but on the other hand you have the world at your fingertips. We would like to hear your thoughts about this so leave us a comment and we will respond as soon as possible. Closing Thoughts

While researching these two questions, we have learned that viewing television lessens communication between spouses. It also lessens the communication between the parent and child. The other thing we have learned about how the television effects our communication is that it doesn’t allow for the natural bonding that should occur. The internet is another thing that can cause these same issues but it can also be a major help when trying to contact people from all over the world. Siegle, D. (2010). Cyberbullying and Sexting: Technology
Abuses of the 21st Century. Gifted Child Today, 33(2), 14-16.

Wellman, B., Smith, A., Wells, A., & Kennedy, T. (2008,
October 19). Networked families. Retrieved October 23,
2012, from Pew Internet and American Life Project website:
http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2008/Networked-
Families.aspx Baym, N. K. (2010). Personal connections in the digital age (1st ed.).
Cambridge, UK: Polity.

Goby, V. (2011). Psychological Underpinnings of Intrafamilial
Computer-Mediated Communication: A Preliminary Exploration of
CMC Uptake with Parents and Siblings.
Cyberpsychology, Behavior & Social Networking, 14(6), 365-370.
doi:10.1089/cyber.2010.0289

Saint Louis, C. (2012, June 14). In the Facebook era, reminders of
loss after families fracture. The
New York Times. Retrieved from
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/15/us/
facebook-complicates-family-
estrangements.html?pagewanted=all&_r=1& References
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