Does happiness live in cyberspace?
Is it possible that we can find friendship, fulfilment and contentment on the internet?
Almost two-thirds of all adults now log on to the web. We spend more and more of our time staring at computer screens.
The question is whether this behaviour is driving human beings apart or bringing us together.
Will the internet make the world a happier or less happy place?
The social scientist Robert Putnam is celebrated for his work in measuring the decline in what he calls "social capital" in the United States.
His work has proved that people in America spend more time alone and less time with friends and family. So what does he think of the internet?
"I think the jury is still out on whether the internet is going to be a kind of nifty telephone, that it is some device that we use for making connections with other real people that we know in other contexts, or a nifty television, that is yet one more screen in front of which we sit more or less passively."
Scientists know human contact is critical to happiness, but technology can push it out of our lives.
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