Membership in virtual communities just as important as real-world social ties -Digital Future Project
November 30th, 2006

According to a new study just released by the USC Annenberg Digital Future Project as much as 43 percent of Americans, who belong to online communities, feel just as strongly about their virtual worlds as their real-world counterparts. In addition, more than 40 percent of Internet users said that the Web helps them stay in touch with more friends and family.

The findings of the Digital Future Project are based on annual interviews with roughly 2,000 individuals and households across the United States, which the center has been tracking for six years.

In my case, I formed friendships with several artists, online, some through communities and some individually; did the same for Web Analytics contacts ..and to me those people are as important as anyone I’d spend time with in the 3D world.

According to an article on CNET:

The majority of members of online communities said they log on at least once a day and often interact with friends or acquaintances when there. According to the study, at least 20 percent of Internet users said that their online community inspires them to act in some way in the offline world at least once a year. And nearly two-thirds of people who belong to social-cause communities said they were new to such activism.

Links: CNET, Digital Future Project

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