Facebook under fire

EXPERTS have again slammed social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, accusing them of destroying social skills.

However, some people believe the only thing ruining social skills are the site users themselves.

A survey has been released saying social networking sites are to blame for people losing the ability to use body language or convey thoughts or feelings.

One finding showed four out of 10 people believe online networks have had a negative influence on society.

But Bundaberg woman Kallee Buchanan said the networks were only negative when people allowed them to be.

“I can stay in touch with issues across the country with Twitter, where I've made great professional contacts,” she said.

“With Facebook, I'm more connected to distant friends than I ever would be without it.”

Ms Buchanan said people who believed the sites were destructive should delete their profiles and find an alternative way of communicating.

“They (the sites) are only destructive if you let them be, and often offer a way for people with crippling social anxieties to connect to people,” she said.

RMIT University's John Lenarcic, a lecturer of business, IT and logistics, agreed with Ms Buchanan.

“These sites are not really damning social skills; it just makes them more efficient,” he said.

Mr Lenarcic said negative buzz seemed to surround every new technological craze.

“People use mobile phones and their English is still fine,” he said.

“People use video games and it doesn't make them cold-blooded killers, so Facebook won't ruin friendships unless you let it. It's like saying Google will destroy people's ability to think. These things aren't going to ruin lives unless you want it to.”

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