Internet replacing the pub for Britons?

Research shows UK think online chatting is the future

Hmmm must need to wipe the screen my friends have gone blurry

New research has shown that Britons are no longer chatting over the fence with a neighbour, instead looking further afield via the power of the 'net.

According to the research, commissioned by LG, the power of social networking is such that online community is replacing that 'traditional' idealistic view, where we would all leave our front doors open and play hoopla in bare feet.

The study doesn't state how many people were surveyed, so it could just be three people researchers met in an internet café, (update: we've just been told it's 1005 - although the possibility of them all being in said cafe wasn't denied) but apparently 41 per cent of people said they use technology to create new communities and eight per cent having no clue about their neighbours.

You wrote LOL - drink!

And the report points to the fact 52 pubs are closing every week as a reason people are starting to look elsewhere for chat - although online drinking probably doesn't hold the same thrall for most people.

"People are forming online communities, fitting with their demanding lifestyle and busy schedule – and the advent of social networking on mobile phones has made this even more popular and accessible," said John Barton, Sales and Marketing Director for LG Mobile.

"Being part of a community is important in maintaining emotional wellbeing, and having a supportive group of friends and family around you helps give you those life's good moments – and this research clearly supports this."

And - would you believe the coincidence - LG has also pointed out that it has a whole range of devices for social networking, under the new 'InTouch' moniker. Isn't that handy?