Posted by: emapey | November 13, 2009

Emotions in Social Networks, CCK09

John Mak asks:

Who am I? What is your identity in social networks?
How would emotions impact on social networking?

He also shows some videos in his post.

I would like to discuss this topic with John. Since I am a reading/writing-preference learner, I searched for text references about Emotions in Social Networks. These are the references I have found

CCK09: help with some clarification please

hey, if i’m a node, i want to do more than connect and fire…i want to think, to feel, to be…
Im ok with a metaphor of synaptic firings, but as a human filled with love & self importance & some regard for others, i also know i am more than this.

The importance of emotions | Why are emotions important in life

Emotions help us to become aware of our needs. All emotions derive from needs. When we feel that our needs are being met, we experience feelings of comfort. The better we are at getting our needs met, the more peaceful and comfortable our lives will be.


Emotions are our feelings. Literally. We feel them in our bodies as tingles, hot spots and muscular tension. There are cognitive aspects, but the physical sensation is what makes them really different.

Emotional Intelligence in online and community learning

As this is the second round of Connectivism CCK09, I am more interested in how “EQ” and emotions propagate through the network, or at least how people would perceive their learning being influenced by the emotions of those nodes, connectors, instructors, co-learners, bloggers and others in the communities.

Maru’s blog: How do we deal with emotions in a network?

Are we willing to discuss our emotions openly?, Does dealing openly with participant’s emotions really promotes learning?

Emotions are important for connections but how and where do we deal with them in a network?. I bet some research been done on this, could any of you share links on the subject?

Twitter: “pointless babble” or peripheral awareness + social grooming?

I vote that we stop dismissing Twitter just because the majority of people who are joining its ranks are there to be social. We like the fact that humans are social. It’s good for society. And what they’re doing online is fundamentally a mix of social grooming and maintaining peripheral social awareness. They want to know what the people around them are thinking and doing and feeling, even when co-presence isn’t viable. They want to share their state of mind and status so that others who care about them feel connected.

on the danger of twitter : D’Arcy Norman dot net

But, I fear that the strengthened social connections are not worth the cost borne in superficial thinking. Being more closely connected is an extremely valuable thing – and Twitter is somehow able to make my connections to people online feel almost tangible, almost real – but not at the cost of shallow thinking.

cck08 Being there and suddenly very lonely | World Wide Wiser

But yesterday, during the Ustream session on Elluminate, I suddenly felt very lonely and estranged. It was of not any importance that I was there, I felt not seen and not heard, I had nothing to say. It was to difficult to read the chat and listen to the session-leaders at the same time. I had the feeling that all other participants knew each other very good and for a long time

Personal Circles – Life With Alacrity

Describes our Support Circle, Sympathy Circle, Trust Circle, Emotional Circle and Familiar Stranger

…the personal limits described herein instead define the limits placed on how many people an individual can know with various degrees of intimacy.

Emotion Becomes “Tractable” to Neuroscience

The amygdalar circuit pulls people away from dangerous situations by giving them emotions like fear and anxiety, when activated. The left prefrontal area pushes people toward new, challenging situations by giving them emotions like hope and optimism, when activated. A person with a healthy, well-adjusted emotional life experiences the appropriate emotional response in situations of danger or situations of opportunity.

The Psychology Of Emotions, Feelings and Thoughts

This book puts forth the idea that life is divided into three groups, emotion, thinking, and feeling. These three groups make humans feel in certain ways, thinking, physical stimulus, and emotion all contribute to feeling. But what is the difference between a thought, an emotion, and a feeling? Is there an overlap between the three? Probably, since any emotion can be broken down into the sensations and real events that caused it, and these events all lead to emotions, feelings and thoughts. So emotions, feelings and thoughts all might have the same source, they are just expressed differently in the mind. Where do your emotions, feelings and thoughts rate on a scale of clarity? Where do they rate on a scale of focus and attention? How does understanding the psychology of ones emotions, feelings and thoughts lead to a long term increased consciousness?

Where’s the Emotion? The Forgotten/Left Out of Biological Basic Needs

Maybe physical necessities keep numbers up and a heart ticking, but aren’t emotional desires a large part of what differentiates organisms? Aren’t our conscious minds- and understanding ourselves- a different, but perhaps just as real need- or desire- worthy of mentioning, even at the most basic biology level? If we’re taught in first or second grade about basic physical necessities- it seems that, in addition to teaching that food and water are necessary, we should be taught about emotions, even to the smallest degree that we could understand at that age.

A Macro Cultural Analysis of Emotions

Educators typically emphasize conveying information and facts; rarely have they articulated or modeled the full learning process replete with emotions of confusion, fear, sorrow, apathy, anger, jealousy, pride, and enthusiasm. Because emotions are integral to educational practices such as learning, persuasion, concentrating, and cooperating on projects, it is vital to understand and address them. Understanding emotions requires comprehending both their specific, distinctive qualities (e.g., palpable visceral qualities), and their general psychological features that they share with other psychological phenomena.

Emotional Competency – Emotion

Emotions are ancient mechanisms that mobilize us to deal quickly with important interpersonal encounters. They have both a primal aspect and a motivational aspect. Emotions act as primal beacons, guiding us along the path of survival.

Youth Use the Internet for Moderating Emotions.

He found that when kids are stressed they use technology to help moderate their emotions. That is, when kids in his study found themselves under stress, they interacted with technology to both moderate their moods and access social networks. Through the Internet, they accessed entertainment and information and sought “social compensation” through recognition and relationship management.

I hope you also find these references useful to learn about emotions in social networking



  1. 🙂

    Nice selection of references and quotes. You have to have emotions in a social network otherwise it would be very bland and soul-less.

    What would a ranting be without genuine anger?

    How do they impact social networking? I’d say most importantly they help define the type and level of engagement of the person.

  2. Eduardo, I think emotions are important in every situation thus also in the virtual world. It seems possible to me to let see others what is happening to you being a participant in a virtual discussion or connection. It is good to tell others what is on your mind even if it is a bit difficult if you can see the other in the eyes. Though, I am used to talk with students and colleagues by mail and Twitter and since short time Google Wave, and for me it is no big problem. I can tell others how I feels about things that are written or said. But I know it is a trajectory which is not easy to everyone. You have to investigate, to learn how to formulate what is on your mind. As you know, language is, or was (is anyway a bit on this moment :-)) a problem. It stays difficult to talk, in real life or in a virtual network, in a language that’s not yours. So networked learning all over the world is more difficult to people from another language then English is not it :-)?
    I like this blog-post because of the subject. It is good to write about emotions in the by Internet connected world.

  3. I like this posting! You are connecting things that most people think are incompatible. But as you show, they aren’t.

  4. Two things occur to me:
    1. Emotions are part of any relationship, whether online, offline, or something we cannot yet fathom
    2. You quote the opinions of others. What is your opinion?

  5. Yes hi Eduardo i didn’t participate in CCK09. For me there needs to be an emotional connection to the consciousness of the group and or group leaders for learning to be so self-directed as in a Connectivist course. I feel an emotional connection to the group by way of the emphasis by Stephen Downes on freedom and connecting to others as important human needs and attributes in learning. And all of the methods, strategies and tools that playfully (or otherwise) facilitate this.

    Similarly I coincidentally found myself emphasising my emotional habits in relation to the exploration of critical thinking in my first blogpost a few days ago.

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