Fact or Fiction: Notes of a Man Interviewing Women Online

Fact or Fiction: Notes of a Man Interviewing Women Online

Michael D. Ayers (New School for Social Research, USA)
Copyright: © 2004 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-152-0.ch014


This chapter examines conditions that participants of online qualitative research might give false answers to a researcher. As research was conducted with feminist activists who were online, a number of the responses were highly suspect as to how true they could actually be. Because the researcher was not face to face with these participants, he had to either take the responses as true or discard them. The researcher argues his lack of face-to-face presence made it difficult to generate a good rapport with these participants, and because of this, received answers based on the only social marker that was evident: his name, or that he was male. Interview data is presented to show apparent discrepancies in our electronic conversations. The chapter concludes by suggesting for future online qualitative research, the researcher should have a more reflexive research design and approach to the project.

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