NOTE: This journal article was written with a few former colleagues – Joy Goodman-Deane, Anna Mieczakowski, Daniel Johnson, Tanya Goldhaber, P. John Clarkson “The Impact of Communication Technologies on Life and Relationship Satisfaction” journal paper. Computers in Human Behavior, Vol. 57, April 2016, pp. 219–229.
Previous studies have shown a relationship between the use of communications technology and well-being, particularly mediated through its effect on personal relationships. However, there is some debate over whether this effect is positive or negative. The present study explored this issue further, examining whether the effect varies depending on the type of communications technology, and the nature of the personal relationship.
An online survey was conducted with 3421 participants in three countries (Australia, UK and US). It examined the use of ten communication methods, overall satisfaction with life and satisfaction with four different kinds of relationships (close and extended family, and close and distant friends).
Results indicate that richer communication methods, which include non-verbal cues, were positively associated with both overall satisfaction with life and satisfaction with relationships. These methods included face-to-face communication, and phone and video calls. Conversely, more restricted methods, such as text messaging and instant messaging, were negatively associated with both variables. Social networking was negatively associated with overall satisfaction, but not with satisfaction with relationships. The strength of the association between a communications method and satisfaction with a relationship varied depending on the type of relationship, but whether it was positive or negative did not change.
Reference to the full article:
Joy Goodman-Deane, Anna Mieczakowski, Daniel Johnson, Tanya Goldhaber, P. John Clarkson “The Impact of Communication Technologies on Life and Relationship Satisfaction” journal paper. Computers in Human Behavior, Vol. 57, April 2016, pp. 219–229.