The Influence of Snapchat on Interpersonal Relationship Development and Human Communication

Justin C Velten, Rauf Arif


This study focuses on Snapchat, a cellphone picture-sending app and its influences on interpersonal relational development and the current understanding of the communication process. Using qualitative interview technique, 75 people were interviewed. These interview responses led to the identification and discussion of seven themes in the realm of interpersonal relationship and human communication. These themes range from moving a relationship from the experimenting to intensifying stage, reinitiating family relationships, relationship maintenance, and avoiding partners. The findings of this study also highlight the significance of a non-response, the level of risk involved in Snapchat messaging, and methods of identity management via Snapchat. Finally, this is a unique study in its approach, which is an effort to look at virtual human communication trends that are contributing to the development and reshaping of interpersonal relationship development models. Also, this investigation provides a new lens of opportunity through which scholars can look at McLuhan’s long-debated claim that the medium is the message.



Snapchat, Social Media, Communication Trends, Relationship Development

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