Exploring Cyberfriendship Formation Among Malaysian Youth
Abu Sadat Nurullah
University of Alberta - Department of Sociology
Journal of Communication Studies, Vol. 1, Nos. 3-4, pp. 217-235, 2008
Cyberspace has become a common place for youth to involve in online networking and to make new friends. This paper focuses on: a) the dynamics of cyberfriendship formation; b) the role of self-disclosure, alienation, and frequency of online interaction on formation of cyberfriendship; and c) the extent of satisfaction achieved from that relationship. A stratified random sample of 250 youth (Mean age = 21.16, SD = 1.36) studying in different undergraduate faculties from a large Malaysian university responded to self-tailored questionnaires. The results revealed that 85.6% youth have formed online friendship using multiple communication channels. Major findings of this research indicated that the combined use of communication channels (i.e., Instant Messengers, e-mail, and Social Networking Sites), together with preexisting face-to-face friendship and loneliness, mediated through online self-disclosure and frequency of online interaction contributed to the formation of cyberfriendship. In addition, loneliness was identified as a contributing factor for cyberfriendship formation among youth. Discussion includes implications of the present findings and suggestions for future research.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 19
Keywords: cyberfriendship, computer mediated communication, online networking, relationships, social technologyAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: October 21, 2011
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