White Paper – chickendinner

Working Hypothesis 1

Social media use cripples the ability of users to hold conversations and have meaningful personal interaction.

Working Hypothesis 2

Social media enables people to build more interpersonal reltaions has a positive net effect on social engagement.


Allen, S. 2019. Social media’s growing impact on our lives. American Psychological Association. https://www.apa.org/members/content/social-media-research

Social media benefits adolescents by allowing them to make more social connections and more readily easily maintian contact.

Best, P., Manktelow, R., & Taylor B. 2014. Online communication, social media and adolescent wellbeing: A systematic narrative review. Children and Youth Services Review. 41. 27-36. 10.1016/j.childyouth.2014.03.001

Social media has both beneficial and deleterious effects on adolescent social wellbeing.

Twenge, J., Spitzberg, B., & Campbell, W. 2019. Less in-person social interaction with peers among U.S. adolescents in the 21st century and links to loneliness. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 36(6). 1892-1913. https://doi.org/10.1177/0265407519836170

Social media use is correlated with less personal interaction at the cohort level, but more at the individual level.

Drago, E. 2015. The Effect of Technology on Face-to-Face Communication. ELON JOURNAL OF UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH IN COMMUNICATIONS. 6(1). http://www.inquiriesjournal.com/articles/1137/2/the-effect-of-technology-on-face-to-face-communication

Many students report that technology reduces human capablity for interpersonal interaction and degrades conversation quality.

Przybylski, A., Weinstein, N. 2012. Can you connect with me now? How the presence of mobile communication technology influences face-to-face conversation quality. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 30(3). 237-246. 10.1177/0265407512453827

Communication technology has been deleterious to our social bonds and our capability for personal conversation.

Current State

My current information seems to lean towards reaffirming hypothesis 1, so I suppose I will start building an argument for that as I gather more data. Hopefully I am able to offer something new, I don’t want to just retread old grounds, but I feel as though I am not approaching the issue through a truly original angle yet.

Topic for Smaller Paper

Distinction Between Digital and Face to Face Communication

(Classification argument)

If I’m goint to make a claim about whether digital communication is inferior to face-to-face, I should establish that there are differences first.

Social Media Destroys Human Capabiltiy for Deeper Interpersonal Relationship

(Causal argument)

One of the major points to be asessed for the purpose of my paper.


The reason adolescents use social media more and face-to-face communication less is because the latter is restricted as a social outlet.

Social media provides adolescents with a valuable creative outlet.

Social media offers many young people a sense of social support.


Social media depersonalizes communication with others, making face-to-face conversation more difficult.

Digital communication damages the closeness and intimacy of interpersonal bonds.

By increasing the number of available people we can communicate with, social media reduces the value of any given particular relationship.

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