Impact Of The Internet On Social Capital And Society Essay

1403 Words Sep 17th, 2015 6 Pages
communicate and socialize. While the telephone certainly resulted in an increased number of calls, Putnam argues that these connections remained limited to our already developed social network, and that as a result we only sought to enhance already developed links rather than to develop new ones. This assertion leads one to consider the merits of a few strong connections versus a variety of weak ones. Thus, although the value of a few strong connections versus that of many weak ones is central to Putnam’s argument, he fails to address it. The final and perhaps most interesting commentary provided by Putnam on the advent of telecommunications is his warning that those who seek to speculate about the impact of the internet on social capital and society are very likely to be confronted with many of the same problems confronted by those who sought to predict the impact of the telephone. He argues very strongly that those who sought to predict the impact of the telephone oftentimes were “flawed” in those predictions largely due to an ability to speak about the future of any technology with certainty. It is this belief that motivates Putnam to refrain in large part from trying to predict the impact that the development of the internet would have on social capital. It is through this discussion that Putnam begins to recognize the impact of the advent of the internet on social connectivity and which leads him to ultimately conclude that to speculate on its…

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