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'Silver surfers' still encouraged by charity

'Silver surfers' still encouraged by charity
26th February 2009

Despite many reports on the bad effects of social networking websites online, many are ignoring the potentially beneficial effects it has for the older community, it has been emphasised.

Leonie Vlachos, the manager of Digital Inclusion, revealed through Age Concern that many elderly internet users - known as silver surfers - are improving their quality of life through such websites and software like Skype to assist them in keeping in touch with people from abroad.

Speaking to the charity, 70-year-old Doreen from Leeds stated that following the passing of her husband, she overcame the feelings of social isolation and loneliness through such websites.

Doreen continued: "Social networking lets me stay in contact with my family abroad and also my friends locally. I've even made some new friends online! I encourage any older people who are feeling isolated or lonely to try social networking."

Perhaps the most famous and well-used social website in the world at the moment is Facebook, founded in 2004 and now home to over 175 million active users.

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