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I'm glad to see that Social Network Analysts have finally realized
that a computer network is a social network -- as a lonely few of
us have been saying for at least a decade.

I couldn't read much of the last two days' exchange, as the HTML garbage
almost totally overwhelmed my ASCII reader. (I thought this was an
ASCII-only list, btw). However, what I did make out was mostly assertion.
There is data on this folks. Lots of it are contained in Wellman &
Haythornthwaite, eds., _The Internet in Everyday Life_ (Blackwell 2002).
The book, btw, contains a revised version of the American Behavioral Scientist
paper someone was kind enough to mention.

As far as we know now, using the Internet does NOT decrease f2f and phone
interaction. So the overall volume of contact is going up, as is the
amount of written communication (reversing the trend to orality), and
probably the diversity of ties.

More research needs to be done, and NetLab just got a nice grant to do it
-- going beyond the quant. numbers to see what people are actually doing.
In East York, of course.


  Barry Wellman        Professor of Sociology       NetLab Director
  [log in to unmask]

  Centre for Urban & Community Studies        University of Toronto
  455 Spadina Avenue   Toronto Canada M5S 2G8   fax:+1-416-978-7162

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