Sourcing My Dream #3

Wegge, D., Vandebosch, H., Eggermont, S., & Walrave, M. (2014). The Strong, the Weak, and the Unbalanced: The Link Between Tie Strength and Cyberaggression on a Social Network Site. Social Science Computer Review, 33, 315-342. doi:10.1177/0894439314546729

Journal Article


This article explains a thorough analysis examining how young people’s connections on online networking sites are related to their risk of being involved in cyberbullying. The claim is that social relationships of young adolescents and their connections on a social network site can be mapped in the context of an existing, offline population (Page 316). The focus of this study is Facebook because it is currently the most popular networking site, but the details can be easily compatible with my digital primary text, After School.

“Friendships online capture a diverse set of social relationships, including family members, school friends, classmates, and acquaintances. Hence, adolescents connect with a diverse set of peers on social networking sites, ranging from ‘‘very good friends’’ to ‘‘no friends’’. Therefore, teenagers acquire both bonding social capital (strong ties) and bridging social capital (weak ties).” (Page 317).

“The definition of tie strength refers to both the ‘‘closeness’’ of a tie (intensity and intimacy) and the ‘‘reciprocity’’ of ties (mutual confining and reciprocal services). Therefore, both notions have been used to describe the strengths of network ties.” (Page 318). “Strong and stable interpersonal relationships are essential to the development of social belonging and emotional well-being. Therefore, it is expected that a lack of such ties increases the likelihood of both perpetration and victimization. With regard to perpetration, poor friendship quality may result in aggressive behavior.” (Page 320).

“The presence of same-grade online connections that were not supported by underlying friendships was shown to increase the likelihood of involvement in aggressive actions on Facebook. Exposure to and interaction with Facebook-only connections (i.e., fellow-grade students who are connected on Facebook but who are not friends at school) increased the risk of falling victim to harassment.” (Page 329).

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