Published on April 15th, 2017 | by Guest


How to Use the Internet to Make Lasting Friendships

Tired of hanging around the same old people every day? Want to get to know more people outside your usual circle of friends? Just connect to the internet! Here are some tips to help you find lasting friendships on the World Wide Web:

Join interest groups.

If you want to make new friends online, don’t just add random people on Facebook and try to chat them up. You’ll only come across as a creep when you do that; you may end up not getting a lot of favorable responses.

What you can do is to join groups. You can start your search on Facebook, where there are public groups for all kinds of hobbies. Whether it’s about pets, gardening, sketching, or gaming, it’s highly likely that there are online groups out there dedicated to those particular interests. There are also group apps like BAND, which allow you to look for groups nearby and join them. The app is especially helpful since it allows you to join multiple online groups while talking advantage of features like community boards, group calls, chat rooms, polls, calendar, file sharing, and photo albums. Finally, you can also go the old-fashioned route and sign up for message boards and forums.

Don’t be shy.

Once you’ve signed up for a group, make sure to interact. Not creating posts in the group you’ve joined nor participating in the discussions is like just sitting in the corner at a party—there’s a huge chance you’ll just be ignored. So make sure to start meaningful conversations by leaving insightful comments or sharing great content. Just make sure to abide by the rules of the community you’ve joined or else you can get kicked out.

Make time for real-life meetups.

Of course, for a friendship to grow, it’s not enough to keep everything online. That’s where meetups come in. Many online groups get together in real life every now and then, bonding over an activity. For example, a Facebook group of travel junkies may organize a trip to a beach getaway that’s open to all members.

By regularly attending these real-life events, you’ll eventually become closer to the members of the online community you’ve joined. This will lead to real-life friendships.

Don’t let the horror stories scare you.

One reason why people are wary about making friends over the internet are all the horror stories they’d hear in the media. After all, there have been cases of fraud, harassment, rape, and even murder perpetrated by someone the victim met online.

While there will always be a risk in meeting strangers, there are several precautions you can take to ensure your safety. For example, you can follow our earlier suggestion and make sure to join big, organized meetups first. You can also have an existing friend to tag along when you meet up with someone. Or you can leave the contact details of the person you’re going to meet with your family or best friend. That way, if something happens to you, they know who to call.

Don’t get discouraged.

Even if it’s a purely platonic relationship, there’s still a need for some chemistry between you and another person to become close friends. So if you try making friends with someone else but it didn’t just work out—say, you can’t even have an enjoyable conversation between the two of you—don’t worry. Just go on the search again! With the size of the internet, you’ll surely find a community that you’ll fit in.

By following these steps, you’re not just sure to gain more friends. You’ll also be able to gain more opportunities and learn more about how other people see the world.

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