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Online friends- advantages and disadvantages, how to recognize a friend, and how danger online?

Online friendship is a relation formed most often on the internet, online and is rarely or almost never combined with real-life interaction. Compared to offline friendships, known as traditional friendships where people Interact with each other, the relation is formed based on face to face interaction. Online friendships are gaining momentum, most famous in the teen period, these relations have high predisposition to continue due to the modern technology life.

 Adolescence as it is well know is a period full of challenges, experimental period of finding oneself in the complex circle of life, filled with numerous new tasks and challenges for the teenager. These new challenges can often cause fear and anxiety, that fear can result with closing yourself off. Despite the asocial behaviour , the teenager has the social motive of belonging and affiliation, online friendship is a way for the person to be satisfied in an alternative way.  Most of the adolescents feel confused, scared, rejected, unwanted, which is perfectly normal in that period, the key is in the way of handling those rough emotions. In the modern society is easy to find an online friend with whom to share things we do not feel ready to share face to face, or if we do not have the person we trust to open up to. Another advantage is the fact that online relations also have a positive impact in forming an utilitarian personality who embraces diversity by befriending people from different countries and cultures. Important advantage of the internet relations is that Introverts and shy people open up online better and easier than in the everyday life. Super important is dealing with the new challenges, which can be tough for the adolescent, finding people who are similar to them, face similar problems are helpful for the teenager. Finding similar people to them can help them realize that the changes that happen to them are universal.

 As with many things, online friendships have their disadvantages as well. At the end of the day, we are still sociobiological people who need to perceive the other person’s body language, online interactions do not allow us to do that. An online friend can disappear much more easily, so it is very difficult to know whether an online friend is real or uses someone’s identity. The fact that every written message and image sent online remains networked in the system, out excessive sharing of personal information can be dangerous. Excessive number of friends online can also lead to loss of contact with reality and everyday friends. Online violence, is another disadvantage, known as cyberbullying is any kind of negative effect and abuse through digital devices, this type of violence is gaining momentum as the internet becomes more and more current, and the most endangered group are teenagers if er take into account their age, social status, experience in life and the period itself. This is shown by many research papers, most of the victims online are people aged 12-18. The reason why cyberbullying is most prevalent today can be explained with the time spent online, boredom and the isolation due to the Covid-19.

 The fundamental part of protecting ourselves from being victims on online violence is recognizing it. So the most common forms of online violence are: mockery, ridicule in comments or private messages, aggressive vocabulary, social exclusion, racism, homophobia, unwanted sex messages, implicit influence on social networks, use of personal photos, messages. 

 The main characteristics of people who are dangerous online is if they have small number of photos or have strange posts, if the person we want to interact with/ have interaction with us have little information about their life, using the social media for short period, do not have mutual friends with us then most likely that person is dangerous, at least in terms of their identity. In terms of an online friend, it can be seen if the the person has shared a lot of information about them, photos as well as mutual friends. Everyone can make a mistake, the most important thing is to talk about it with a friend, parent or a person you trust. If you do not have the complete trust you should know that you can always talk to AloBushavko, we are here for you ready to resolve and listen to your situation.