Friendships fostered through online gaming, new research reports

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Roger Altizer says the Pew Research Center lent legitimacy to a trend he and his colleagues have watched develop for years.

Altizer is associate director of the Entertainment Arts and Engineering Program at the University of Utah.

"It's the first major national report that reflects stuff that we sort of knew from smaller studies and from industry studies that games bring people together," Altizer said.

The report is called "Teens, Technology, and Friendship," and it compiles data from a national survey of teens aged 13 to 17 and focus groups of teens in the same age group.

According to the report, 67% of teen boys play online with friends every week and in many cases every day.

The report indicates video gaming has become as much about interacting with friends as it is about playing the game itself.

For example, one aspect of the report states 78% of online gamers say that playing with their friends over the Internet makes their relationship closer.

"A lot of people are worried that games make you isolated that you're going to sit in the basement and be all alone, and the reality is that nothing could be further from the truth. Games help children build lasting friendships," Altizer said.

5 comments

  • Really

    This is so true. I’ve been an online gamer for more than 15 years. I’ve developed very close friendships with people around the world over time. Once a year, we all get together in a different city for vacation. One year or was vegas, one year Dallas, this year we met in London! Gaming CAN help develop lasting friendships! I’m a gaming gal and proud of it!

  • NathanDaSkate

    Bob why do you have to be So negative about everything. I think you are a little cynical to be making posts on every article.

  • boom

    bob misses an archaic time, when racial slurs, super nationalism, and religious bigotry were the norm. he is just cynical because the world is progressing and leaving his out dated views in the dust.

    • NathanDaSkate

      Exactly. I know my daughter plays a bunch of online games with the same group of people. Some of them she goes to school with some she doesn’t but of all the kids she plays online with all contact her Daily on her phone or other means of communication to talk to her.

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