[Air-L] facebook research - need some thoughts on facebook, and research ethics

Pearse Stokes pearsestokes at gmail.com
Wed Mar 4 02:45:51 PST 2009

Hi Mary,

I think the issue you need to resolve is the issue of 'intervention' not 
'intervention on facebook'.. What is your proposal? What is your 
research question?

Having broken probably every one of the British Sociological 
Associations ethical guidelines at some point or other I would suggest 
that you explore a "positive/negative" approach. Whereby you argue that 
the breech of ethics is offset by the value of the research. However, 
intervention is not research (I crossed the boundary between research 
and intervention in my Pro-Ana research arguing that I was a human first 
and an researcher second) so who are you to intervene?

Perhaps if we knew what you were looking at in a bit more detail we 
could help. I love ethical issues! haha.

Pearse Stokes
> Message: 2
> Date: Tue, 3 Mar 2009 13:13:52 -0500
> From: marybeth deline <mdeline at alumni.sfu.ca>
> Subject: [Air-L] facebook research - need some thoughts on facebook
> 	and	research ethics
> To: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
> Message-ID: <516C6197-7713-4D87-98DF-55D6D3072983 at alumni.sfu.ca>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII; delsp=yes; format=flowed
> Hi everyone,
> My name's Mary Beth Deline and I'm currently a graduate candidate at  
> the University of Waterloo - I'm hoping I can get some help from the  
> list re: research ethics and Facebook. I'm currently checking out how  
> feasible my thesis proposal is, which concerns using Facebook as a  
> site for an intervention - either by developing an application or  
> posting information on participant's walls (these participant's would  
> have been recruited beforehand). I've contacted Facebook and they  
> referred me to their Terms of Services and said that was all they  
> could do for me. I'm having trouble finding someone who can help me  
> match that (and their Developer Terms of Service) up to the Canadian  
> Tri-Council ethical guidelines.
> If anyone has any experience using Facebook as an intervention site,  
> or is able to provide guidance/direction on FB and research ethics  
> (either American or Canadian), could you please get in touch with me,  
> on or off the list? I've reviewed the Tri-Council's Feb 08  
> recommendation paper on Internet research and have searched the  
> archives on this list as well but haven't been able to find anything  
> specifically about using FB as a research 'site'. Thanks in advance,
> MB
> mdeline at alumni.sfu.ca

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