Studying closed communities on-line: Digital methods and ethical considerations beyond informed consent and anonymity

  • Hård af Segerstad, Ylva
  • Kullenberg, Christopher
  • Kasperowski, Dick
  • Howes, Christine
This chapter explores how ethical principles can be used to inform and modify digital methods in order to conduct responsible internet research. Rather than abandoning the possibilities that rich data and digital methods offer in instances where informed consent is problematic, we instead discuss how digital tools can be used to achieve anonymization when studying online communities. We use the case study of a vulnerable, closed Facebook group to illustrate when and how informed consent and anonymity can be achieved and how digitally generated research data urges us to rethink these notions and their relation to data quality.
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Internet Research Ethics for the Social Age: New Cases and Challenges
Peter Lang
Zimmer, M. and K. Kinder-Kurlanda
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