Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Will social media strengthen or threaten romantic love?

Uusiautti, Satu and Määttä, Kaarina (2017): Will social media strengthen or threaten romantic love? Published in: Journal of Social Sciences (COES&RJ-JSS) , Vol. 6, No. 4 (1 October 2017): pp. 709-725.

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The ways we represent our relationships, notice our partners, and let the social media interfere in our romantic relationships have aroused researchers’ interest. In this research, the purpose was to analyze, how people who use social media actively perceive the connection between social media and romantic relationships. The research questions set for this study were: (1) What are the rules of self-disclosure that support romantic relationships in social media?; (2) What kinds of benefits do social media provide for romantic relationships?; and (3) What kinds of threats or disadvantages do social media provide for romantic relationships? This was a qualitative research in which the research participants (N=25) were approached with an online questionnaire that included open-ended questions. The answers were analyzed with the qualitative content analyzing method. The findings showed that the research participants could name some principles of self-disclosure regarding their romantic relationships in social media and certain benefits as well as harms and threats of social media for a romantic relationship. The findings were further discussed in the light of the elements of love as emotions, love as actions, and love as skills and knowledge that here could be interpreted as “the media literacy of romantic relationships”.

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