Intergenerational contacts online: An exploratory study of cross-generational Facebook “friendships”

Bernadette Kneidinger


Since the older generations discover social networking sites (SNSs) as a useful communication and information tool, SNSs can become a new platform for interactions between members of different generations. This paper summarizes the contradictory status of research about the importance of computer-mediated communication for intergenerational relations and shows, with findings of an online survey (N = 987), how Facebook is used for intergenerational communication. This exploratory study reveals some quite different perceptions about the effects of SNS on intergenerational relationship quality that should be a starting point for further studies about intergenerational contacts in SNS.


Intergenerational relationships; Computer-mediated communication; Social networking sites; Online survey


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Studies in Communication Sciences | ISSN: 1424-4896