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Opinion: Are Online Gaming Friends Really Friends?

What if the boundaries between offline and online friends has changed due to technology. Do we now live in a world where that differentiation is no longer relevant?

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PhoenixUp103d ago

Are online friends in any medium real friends?

Tetsujin102d ago

My vote goes to yes; there's a few I met in person, and some I didn't even know lived in the same area until later. Everyone I meet is a friend? No. But I have made some irreplaceable ones through gaming online.

Ra3v3r102d ago

There's a group of nine of us that used to play Destiny together all the time. We've met despite being from all over the UK and we're all in contact almost every day of the week through WhatsApp so yeah, I'd say online friends can be actual friends.

rainslacker101d ago (Edited 101d ago )

Sometimes they can be. One person I know i never met, although have known them from online for almost 20 years back when ICQ was a thing, but I could talk to her about anything, and she would do all, if not more than any friend I know in real life would for me, and I for her. Obviously not like loan money, or drive them somewhere if their car broke down because of the distance between us, but on an interpersonal connection level, I'd say she's probably one of my best friends.

While I don't consider the majority of people on my "friends lists" as "real friends", more like acquaintances, I can say the same about some of my friends in real life as well. I'd wager that for most people, the real life friends they call friends are not overly deep relationships, because it's hard, if not imporssible, to manage a lot of deep interpersonal connections, because even if you yourself are not self motivated, too many other people are, and it becomes taxing. not to say you wouldn't hang out with those people, but would you go out of your way to be a "true friend" and do whatever is involved to be as such?

Level of friendship doesn't really have anything to do with actual face to face interaction, but rather how one feels, reacts, and is supported by said friend or how you support them, and just like real life friends, that level can vary from one person to the next.

I have met people in person that I have met online before when it's prudent, and there are real life friends on my friends list I haven't seen or talked to for years.

All that said, the bulk of the people on my friends lists for gaming nowadays are people I do know in real life. The only exception are from people I met on forums and at least respect enough to want to play with them. They may not be friends, as I wouldn't go on about my day, or try to get involved with their lives, but that doesn't mean that wouldn't be possible should the situation arise. Relationships like what the author is referring to take time to foster.

Fist4achin102d ago

From a social media standpoint, friendship is for the most part shallow. I think gaming friendships can be formed if you like the same games, play together and help each other achieve objectives, progress, and overall have fun with it. Also, it could be a way for friends to keep in touch in the event they have to move far apart.

Critic4l_Strik3102d ago

Exact same thing happened to me and my friends. We all moved out to different countries, yet, we catch up with each other while we game once or twice a week.

rainslacker101d ago

I think any kind of relationship can form through any sort of means available. Thing about social interaction is that it doesn't really depend so much on medium, but rather how people react to or feel about the actual interaction taking place. One's feelings shouldn't be downplayed because they find friendship from someone they met online, because face time with someone is not what makes a friendship real.

There are those that put too much stock in calling all these people their friends, as I'd say a lot of times they'd fall more into the acquantances category, but I'd say that is like you'd refer to "your friends from work" who you may be OK with, but wouldn't spend any quality time with.

There are other psychological things that could be detremental to someone should they put too much stock in such things, however, for any relatively mentally healthy person, finding a good friend online is fine, and it's worth taking the time to know more people when given the chance..

JCW2005102d ago ShowReplies(6)
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