Friday, 27 April 2012

online friendships - why the stigma?

The majority of us spend a copious amount of time online, whether it be on facebook, watching videos on youtube, or online shopping, the web has become a standard part of our every day lives. With social media sites popping up all over the place such as tumblr and twitter giving us an insight to the lives of millions of other people, whether it be our fave celebs or those who share mutual interests, it's becoming increasingly easy to spark up conversation and friendship with individuals you've never met, from all over the world.

Now, I'm not saying making friends with a random stranger is without its dangers but the social stigma and sneering at those who choose to form strong friendships with others irks me and is surely completely outdated in this day and age?
Some people find it harder to communicate with those around them and whilst I don't advocate becoming a complete social recluse and never seeing daylight and bothering with friends you may have 'in real life'  I really don't see the problem with bonding with another over mutual interests online.

I met one of my closest friends, Rachel, online over three years ago and since then we've been come extremely close and my friendship with her is probably more sincere than past relationships I've had with so called friends who've bitched about me and put me down.
Transatlantic relationships do work, and we're the proof.
We became penpals, skyped, and are currently planning a trip for her to visit me here in London and for me to stay with her next summer in America as well as the added bonus of international makeup swaps which I've always thought it a really exciting concept and something I've always been dying to try as it enables you to try out brands you wouldn't be able to find in your own country. Obviously, we got to know each other for a lengthy amount of time before any personal details were exchanged as you can never be too careful, but we skyped, and spoke almost every day online for over a year and I'm so glad I'm able to call her my friend as I can confide a lot in her and vice versa.

 Why should the friends we have be restricted to the country or town we live in? That just sounds silly to me.
Not only has it given us opportunities to travel and experience new cultures but using the internet as a platform to find others that share your interests can lead you to meeting the most lovely of people who you would never have had the chance to meet and become friends with otherwise. For example, the hashtag ##bbloggers led me to meet lot's of genuinely sweet girls and it was in fact Jade, a fellow beauty blogger and overall stunner, who inspired and encouraged me to write this post.

As long as you're sensible and don't get sucked in to handing over say your address and pin details to any old scam artist there are plenty of genuinely nice people out there and I think sometimes the media focus too much on the negatives of online communities.

The internet is not only a place to look at funny photo's of cats and facebook stalk but a place where you can find friends and those who want to sneer at you or call it 'lame' or 'naive' are the one's missing out.

I know this isn't my usual type of post but I thought I'd just share this with you and I'd love to know your opinions!

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