In the 1950`s, couples on US campuses took out ads in college newspapers to announce that their relationship was getting serious. In the 1990`s, we had Facebook official. One of the social media site's first features, rolled out while the network was still primarily used by students at US universities, was the "relationship status". And at first, it was a successful one: a way for users to broadcast their personal lives to friends and ex-lovers, and another way to show off online.
Facebook has become the central mode for communicating online. And communication online in general has surpassed other forms of communication, between the fun of it and it's ability to reach multiple people at once. One can quickly and easily feel as though they have publicly declared their feelings using Facebook.
Yes, these generations are so attached to social media, that it's hard to know what is real and what is not. Sometimes, people don't really want to just share something with family and friends. Rather, they want to see how many likes they can get. A real relationship shouldn't only exist online.
Yes, this is the first generation to grow up with social media and therefore it does have some major influences. But it influences different people in different ways. Therefore, we can not generalize how people define relationships because a small portion of the population relies more heavily on the social media status than in other generations past. Not everyone participates in social media the same way.