Some argue online friends can never be a true friend. Others swear the connections they’ve made online are precious. Like with all things in our technological world, the definition of a friend is changing. Teens and children, the Digital Natives (those born during or after the introduction of digital technology), can and do make friends online they consider real.
One teacher recounts his experiences of how Digital Natives form online friendships. Teens do not distinguish between friends they made online and friends they know in real life. Instead, they refer to their online friends as, “This guy I know in Maine...” or “My friend in Italy...” A teen would take great offense if you even hinted their online friends were less than real.