Technology has become a revolutionary way to interact with people around the world. Many argue that online communication is not as healthy, or as much of a relationship. However, Henry Jenkins, the author of Love Online, argues that his son’s online relationship was just as meaningful as the relationship he and his wife share.
Jenkins wrote the article reflecting on the type of relationship his son was having online. He begins by explaining that his son was not finding girls that peaked his interest at school, so he “cast a wider net” towards the internet in hopes of finding some sort of connection. It was online that Jenkins’ son found Sarah, a girl who became his love.
A point that Jenkins made, which is important to note, is that long-distance communications and relationships are not new concepts. Although, the ways in which people go about maintaining those connections are new. Jenkins explains that his grandparents and parents were faced with long-distance relationships when the men went to war. During that time, they kept their relationship alive through handwritten love letters. Now, the long-distance relationships are maintained through chat rooms, texting, e-mail and phone calls.
There is, often, a negative stigma surrounding online relationships, because of shows like MTV’s Catfish where they expose people who are not who they say they are online. Though the risk is there, Jenkins’ son proves that love can be found and be real. “Their feelings were no less real to them than the first love of any other teenage, past or present,” says Jenkins.
Technology has been a great way to connect a variety of people from across the world. People are able to maintain long-distance relationships much easier than in the past. Whether thy have met their partner in person, or are meeting only online, people are able to find love and connection through the use of technology.