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Cyberpsychology by Garry Young, Monica T. Whitty

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3 Online Relationships

Although the Internet was not originally designed to be a social space, it did not take long for users to start appropriating it in social ways. Much of what we do online is social, and research has demonstrated that psychologically healthy relationships can be formed and maintained online. As outlined in this chapter, scholars have also learnt that these relationships are not always the same as their offline counterparts (sometimes they are closer or more intimate and sometimes they are more transitory). This chapter begins with a brief overview of some of the main theories developed prior to the advent of the Internet to explain relationship formation. It is important to consider these theories with regard to ...

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