33% have broken up by Facebook, text, or e-mail (infographic)

How important is Facebook when it comes to relationships? Apparently very important: it's used when they first meet, for scheduling the first date, making their status official, all the way to the breakup.
Written by Emil Protalinski, Contributor

33 percent of social network users have broken up with their significant others over Facebook, text message, or e-mail. It's a little saddening to learn that so many people opt to use a few keystrokes to dismiss their loved ones rather than talking to them face-to-face, but apparently that's where the world is heading.

The findings come from Lat42, a market research company that conducted a survey by asking personal relationship questions to 550 individuals aged 18+ between October 27 and October 30. Although the data is limited to social network users, which definitely skews it a bit, the age bracket is important: it excludes all the pre-teens and tweens you might expect to tilt the scales the other way.

When it comes to relationships, Facebook's role continues to grow. It all starts right from the first encounter: 57 percent of people who meet someone they're interested in quickly send them a Facebook friend request.

From there, 24 percent say they are most likely to ask someone on a first date via Facebook, more than any other form of communication apart from in-person (42 percent). Furthermore, some 45 percent of loving couples communicate primarily by Facebook message, after calling (67 percent) and texting (65 percent).

The Facebook relationship status is also quite telling. 38 percent change it immediately when they make it official, while 52 percent change it immediately after the breakup. No matter how you slice it, that's pretty rough.

I use Facebook on a daily basis, but when my girlfriend and I made our relationship official, she told me she didn't want it posted on the social network. We do, however, use Facebook infrequently for sharing links. What about you?

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