On Friendship Between Online Equals
There is an ongoing debate about the value of virtual friendship. In contrast to previous authorships, this paper argues that virtual friendship can have independent value. It is argued that within an Aristotelian framework, some friendships that are perhaps impossible offline can exist online, i.e., some offline unequals can be online equals and thus form online friendships of independent value.
KeywordsVirtual friendship Social media Philia MMORPG
We wish to thank the following people for helpful and valuable comments during our work with this paper: Marcus Agnafors, Barbro Fröding, Fritz Gåvertsson, Sven Ove Hansson, Asger Kirkeby-Hinrup, Joel Parthemore, Martin Peterson, Per Sandin, Andreas Engh Seland, and Eva Österberg. We also wish to thank the participants at the Research Seminars at The Philosophy Department, Lund University and the Division of Philosophy, Royal Institute of Technology, (KTH), where early drafts were presented. A special thank you to Ingvar Johansson whose comments we have benefited greatly from. We are also grateful for the useful feedback we received from the anonymous reviewers for Philosophy & Technology.
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