Does Instagram Equal Instant Friends?



Araniee Sothilingam ’25 checks her Instagram notifications during her free time in class.


It’s past midnight, and you and your friends are still up, complaining about the amount of work and jokingly—or maybe not—thinking of dropping out of school.

Phones are the one key to this communication and connection, a habit that also lends itself to exposure to the real world. There are many opportunities to find friends from Snapchat, Instagram, Discord, and many other apps. Many want to find new friends, but are too scared of confrontation and in-person contact. Instead, they turn to social media. 

…the individual’s preference can tell whether or not friends over-sea is the option for them.

— Jonathan Putong '26

Today, people have the decision to socialize in real life or online, so some decide to find friends online while others take initiative to find friends face-to-face. According to CBS News, 57% of teens have made friends online.

In EHS, many students love to socialize online with other people; for some, access to the internet has assisted with and persisted past the isolation of quarantine and virtual learning.

“I’ve made about 8 friends online,” said Zachary Salvetti ’26.

“Yes, I made a lot of online friends,” said Fatima Babekir ’24.

This need to socialize online was especially convenient and habit-making for students who started a large high school like Edison High during the year of lockdown due to Covid-19.

“I made friends online because I was alone in quarantine and had no school friends,” said Teariny Edwards ’25.

Despite the prevalence of using social media and related forms to forge relationships, other students are cautious and express their concern about safety and genuineness in making friends this way.

“No, [people online] pretend to be someone else,” commented Tehreem Gul ’23. 

Online friends come with both the good and the bad—but really, the individual’s preference determines whether or not friends via the computer or cell phone screen is the right option.