Do We Live Too Much of Our Lives in the Ether?

With the rise of social networking sites like Facebook and a shift towards electronic commerce, email and Internet-based news, it's almost impossible not to find yourself living a life that is more and more geared to the Internet. The benefits of the Internet are perhaps beginning to be outweighed by the negatives, but as a new UK study shows, people who spend more time online are more likely to suffer from depression and loneliness and insular life. So too are living our lives in the ether or not the positive side of the Internet outweigh the negatives?

Social networking is perhaps the biggest hits of recent times and helps keep millions if not billions of people connected worldwide law. The pros and cons of social networking are thick and fast however, and are regularly appeared in all the headlines. Parents' fears that young people are vulnerable to criminals is a negative, while the number of people arrested for crimes after publishing the evidence against them via social networks is also increasing. More recently, people who work in high profile professions such as politics and medicine have lost their jobs after the release of sensitive or offensive information on clients and colleagues. Social networks, it seems, is a great way to maintain contact but should be used in a professional and sensitive to not fall ill to recent trends.

The ease with which such products as food and clothing can be purchased online is a clear benefit experienced by traders and shoppers. But it is encouraging electronic commerce actually hurt local businesses and the street? Well, the answer is probably yes. In recent years, the amount of Christmas shopping online has skyrocketed while the shops on the street have reported reduction in sales from year to year. Although many stores now offer online equivalents, as well as traditional high street shop, closing the stores through a combination of falling sales and the recession is a great pressure on local populations and security of their jobs. While buyers from the main street can be safe in the knowledge that at least part of the money spent to support local employment and commerce, online shopping from abroad means less money spent on home turf, which together could be an important gap in the economy.

Another Internet success story of recent years is the increase in website price comparison. With a year on year growth of 30-50%, the price comparison sites do not actually sell financial products, but compare prices on behalf of customers before telling them that the sellers are best for them.

Whether in search of life insurance comparison and investigation of insurance prices wedding really is a site for consumers, while all have the comfort inherent in the use of a service authorized by the FSA. When it comes to money, however, the Internet is a haven for scammers and swindlers.

Many consumers are transferred to email-based scams often see people unknowingly surrender your credit card, only to have their accounts on the funds within moments. On parting with money or seeking financial advice online, consumers are advised to seek the FSA approved the logo and was never told to respond to suspicious emails asking for money or credit cards in advance.

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