Recent research suggests that social networking sites are not going away and the behaviour that drives them is among the strongest of current social trends. Monthly figures from industry watchers M:Metrics suggest that 10 per cent of online users in the UK have used social networking sites and that 15 per cent thought they were likely to post photos or videos on the web in the coming 12 months.
It also quotes Dr Cynthia McVey, lecturer in psychology at Glasgow Caledonian University, who says:
"There are going to be some things missing from electronic interaction such as the use of body language and expression. You can say something in words and it can be funny, ironic, sad or malicious depending on your facial expression or your hand movements."
There is much more in the article.
Perhaps this is why so many people who have on-line acquaintances are so happy to meet at conferences to get a deeper sense of who they are interacting with. Is this what PR can add to social media? The opportunity to meet face to face.... Absolutely.