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They only know what they see and read. Worse, the feeling they may have toward us is one-sided.

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very inspiring and thought-provoking. just because someone doesn‘t love you the way you want them to, doesn’t mean they don‘t love you with all they have.

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The jealous are troublesome to others, but a torment to themselves. ( W. Penn)

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He is a good friend that speaks well of us behind our backs.

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If your morals make you dreary. depend upon it, they are wrong. (Robert Louis Stevenson, British novelist)

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It is great to read an entry written from heart rather than just keystrokes. Thanks for providing great content.

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The road chosen in yesterday, please not return your head again and again. Regardless it ever gave you more delights or sadness.

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WOW!! Hats off to your research and content quality. Keep it up.

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Someone tell me "If you want to know the quality of tea put it in hot water".

jamie flinchbaugh

A good read. My personal preference is I'd rather have 5 true friends than 100 acquaintances.

lenny97

This is exactly the sentiment I have looking at today's generation. It is all about where true friendship starts and the virtual internet life ends. We try to keep this alive in our kids.

Hugo Nieva

Someone tell me "If you want to know the quality of tea put it in hot water". I think that in adverse circumstances, the true friends and business associates will appear.

sbker

I had come to the same conclusion just the other week. While I know this is not your purpose - it reminds me why I am sometimes bothered by our hyper-connected society. The explosion of available technologies allowing people to connect is now inadvertently creating a generation of people content with large quantities of tenuous relationships.

On the bright side, like you said, it does bring to light your real friendships; so maybe it is a good thing after all?

John Pearce

I found this because I'm an old man, new to BLOG and twitter and I love your "Why?" TED video... You are so concise... I aspire to that... I agree with your realism about "friends". In have good ones - close and real... and have been duped into thinking that this internet surfriending is real (in some way)..as a communication of ideas... BUT have had little response to my pouring out... www.johnpearce.org.uk (BLOG and twitter on right hand window) I care about what I write and but shall probably give up soon...and cherish those few closest in physical proximity...

NJoshi

How serendipitous. I was just thinking along those lines - what friendship means - this week. I received an email from a dear friend of 30+ years confirming my thoughts. That closeness isn't formed by someone telling you who they are, where they are (literally and figuratively) or what they are. It comes from a slow, silent and sometimes painful and accepting, love and respect in the discovery of that person from all facets and angles, good and bad.

dshin

Great post Simon. Always a pleasure reading your blog posts. I just reached out to a friend after reading it. Too long since I've done that so thanks for the reminder.

Andrew

A great reconnect that I made last year with my business. Four years of Internet focused business, clients world wide but no 'physical connection'

Yes I was connected but not in a true sense.

Thanks for reminding me that I have done the best thing for myself and my new clients

Bill Belsey

Thank you for this thoughtful and timely post. My grade five students and I are currently undertaking a project which is looking at friends and how technology is changing the nature of friendships. I am going to share your post with my students and ask them for their thoughts and feedback. I would like to ask your permission to include a link from our blog this post. We would invite you to visit our project and share your thoughts at http://www.thefutureoffriendship.org. Please also take our online survey while you are there. Thank you.

Rafstevens

Wow. This is 'The New Trade'! Already loved your BIG why.
It is all about people connecting to other people by sharing their stories for everyone to repeat hoping to make the world a better place. Join the new trade: www.linkedstories.com

Peter Paluska

You make some excellent points, Simon. It is indeed a tremendously valuable process to occasionally stop and reflect on who our true friends are in our life. And, I agree, in most cases (possibly with very rare exceptions) these are not going to be individuals we have met only via social media platforms.
Thank you very much for your blisteringly honest and forthright take on the nature of friendship and how it is challenged in our age of digital overload and attention deficits.

Peter

JC Duarte

Great post Simon! Congrats on being a GREAT friend as well!

By coincidence (if you believe in those things) ;-) I liken "being a friend" to Seth Blogs "I've got your back" http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2011/01/ive-got-your-back.html post..

It's when you feel safe because you know that someone authentically cares & "is there" for you without judgment... even ready to kick your bum if you need & deserve it!

Jack Price

It is sometimes a bit heartbreaking to connect with old friends on Facebook. The fond feelings are still there, but time has moved on, and we are no longer quite as relevant to each other as we once were. Not that true friendships are ever lost. True friendships endure because we once shared experiences that had deep emotions attached to them. Those friendships were formed in the moment, and it takes more than a click to renew them. Simon is right: sometimes only a hug will do.

Pamela Vanderway

Just want to say thank you for this post! It's one I'll remember for a long long time.

Conor

I have been thinking a lot about this question since a conversation with my father over Christmas about whether social media changes the game - and opens up a possibility of building relationships of trust through bits rather than requiring a physical, face-to-face moment in order to construct true friendship. Your story helps put clarity. However, I have at least 2 cases of people that I have never met physically, but have shared deep stuff with them - deep, personal stuff that would not be shared except with a true trusted friend. I still think physical contact accelerates the process, but it may not be irreplaceable. Shared unique experiences are what build my strongest bonds with friends. Having a daughter and being a single father has forced me to ask for more help from friends than ever before in life - and has interestingly led to much deeper connection. A bit rambling, but this is an important post!

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