Online interaction, such as between me and my peers in online classes, provide a wonderful opportunity to meet new people who have common goals. I do feel that I have made new friends in this method. However there are also some challenges, effectively communicating online can sometimes be hit with a road block. Feelings and opinions can be different from one another and there are many barriers that influence the flow of communication(Inanova, 1999). One of these barriers is a physical one. These can include a lack of personal proximity to the one you wish to communicate with(Inanova, 1999). Being far away with no means to contact them would be an example. Remember that psychical barriers can also produce emotional barriers. Being available is import aspect in a relationship, and often online friendships lack this ability.
In contrast, online friendships help break down cultural barriers, because we can met and relate to people from all over the world via the internet. This broadens our horizons and open a new avenue to develop diverse friendships. Social media also offers individuals the chance to meet many people and develop friendship in an unintimidating manner. Social anxiety, withdrawal, and avoidance can also inhibit the process of meeting people face to face, online friendships sometimes makes individuals feel more at easy and willing to speak with others.
Overall, I feel that online friendships, especially between classmates can be both meaningful and lasting. However one must learn to communicate properly both in person and online.
Inanova, T. (1999). Barriers to effective interpersonal interactions. Retrieved from http://www.ehow.com/info_7930361_barriers-effective-interpersonal-interactions.html