This study has revealed many aspects of MMORPGs that were not known before… Previous research has suggested that gamers are socially inactive, but MMORPGs are actually extremely social games, with high percentages of gamers making life-long friends and even partners… As well as making good friends online, 81 per cent of gamers play with real-life friends and family, suggesting MMORPGs are by no means an asocial activity, nor are the players socially introverted. The virtual world that these games offer, allow players to express themselves in ways they may not feel comfortable doing in real life because of their appearance, gender, sexuality, age, or other factors. They also offer a place where teamwork, encouragement and fun can all be experienced.
And we needed a study to tell us this?
MMO Social Study [Games Industry]