Journal of Social and Personal Relationships
Online social networking services are Internet websites that allow individuals to learn about and communicate with others. This study investigated the association between use of these websites and friendship quality for individuals varying in shyness. Participants (N = 241) completed questionnaires assessing their use of Facebook, an online social networking service, shyness, perceived available social support, loneliness, and friendship quality. Results indicated an interaction between shyness and Facebook usage, such that individuals high in shyness (when compared to less shy individuals) reported stronger associations between Facebook use and friendship quality. Facebook use, however, was unrelated to loneliness among highly shy individuals. Therefore, online social networking services may provide a comfortable environment within which shy individuals can interact with others.