Natalie Pennington (Communication Studies) published an article alongside Jeffrey A. Hall (Kansas) and Andy J. Merolla (UC, Santa Barbara) titled, "Which mediated social interactions satisfy the need to belong?" in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication. This study looked at whether face-to-face communication compared to mediated communication made people feel more connected to one another and less lonely. The three studies compare each way of communicating at different time periods across three studies — within a day, over a year following the pandemic, and at a particularly lonely or connected time of life.