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Publications - Abstracts:

Examining Community in the Digital Neighbourhood: Early Results from Canada's Wired Suburb


Can supportive, sociable and meaningful relations be maintained online? Will life online replace, complement, or supplant life in the flesh? Netville is a residential development located in suburban Toronto equipped with a high-speed network as part of its design. The clustering of homes within this area allowed us to study the social networks, civic involvement, Internet use, and attitudes of residents. We are interested in how living in a residential community equipped with no cost, very high speed access to the Internet affects the kinds of interpersonal relations people have with coworkers, friends, relatives, and neighbors. This paper explores the research goals and methods used in the Netville project and introduces preliminary results on the effect of living in a new residential development equipped with no-cost, very high-speed access to the Internet on neighborhood social relations.

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