Gen X mixes online, personal interaction

Jan. 31, 2013 at 4:53 PM

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 31 (UPI) -- Young Generation X adults are just as likely to connect with friends, family and co-workers online as they are in person, a U.S. study indicates.

Researchers at the University of Michigan say adults in their late 30s report they engaged in about 75 face-to-face contacts or conversations in a typical month compared to about 74 electronic contacts through personal emails or social media.

"Given the speed of emerging technologies, it is likely that electronic contacts will continue to grow in the years ahead, eventually exceeding face-to-face interactions," researcher Jon D. Miller said.

"But the young adults in Generation X are currently maintaining a healthy balance between personal and electronic social networking," he said in a university release Thursday.

Miller directs the Longitudinal Study of American Youth at the university's Institute for Social Research.

Studying Gen X social networks is important, he said, because these networks, sometimes referred to as "social capital," are a vital component of the quality of life.

"This is the first generation of Americans to reach adulthood at the beginning of the Electronic Era," Miller said. "So it's understandable that they should show a substantial mix of traditional and electronic networking as they build and maintain the social capital that will help to carry them through their lives."

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Texas man killed in apparent alligator attack
Kentucky clerk sued for refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses
Police arrest N.C. soldier with assault rifle headed to mall photo shoot
North Korean biochemical weapons researcher defects to Europe
Four accused in slave-labor trafficking ring on Ohio egg farm