When the Ethic is Functional to the Method: The Case of E-Mail Qualitative Interviews

When the Ethic is Functional to the Method: The Case of E-Mail Qualitative Interviews

Nadia Olivero (University of Milan-Bicocca, Italy) and Peter Lunt (University College London, UK)
Copyright: © 2004 |Pages: 13
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-152-0.ch006
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Abstract

This chapter explores the methodological implications of using e-mail for qualitative interviews. It draws on computer-mediated communication (CMC) literature to remark that, contrary to generalized assumptions, technological-based anonymity does not always correspond to increased self-disclosure. Conversely, it is shown that e-mail interviews make the interviewer effect unavoidable, stimulate reflexivity and must rely on trust and equal participation more than face-to-face interviews. To address the interviewee’s resistance and avoid unwanted phenomena of strategic self-presentation, a model of interview based on a feminist ethic is proposed.

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