Eight-four percent of respondents aged between 19-29 said they would sooner ditch their partner or their car than do without the Internet.
Despite the chilling results, August-Wilhelm Scheer, president of the broadband association Bitkom, was at pains to deny that this was evidence of any rampant nerdification of German society.
Nearly one third of the 1,000 Germans polled said social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace and their German equivalents had helped them expand their circle of friends while more than one in five said the Internet was playing a growing role in their social life.
"Our study shows that the Web is not an anonymous medium that leads to coldness in society," Scheer said. "The Web helps create actual relationships."