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Shock and offence online: the role of emotion in participant absent research

Grant, Aimee ORCID: 2017. Shock and offence online: the role of emotion in participant absent research. Loughran, Tracey and Mannay, Dawn, eds. Emotion and the Researcher: Sites, Subjectivities and Relationships, Studies in Qualitative Methodology, London: Emerald,
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Purpose - This chapter considers the implications of online participant absent research, that is where the researcher has no interaction with the author, on researcher emotion. Drawing on a study of data extracts ‘mined’ from the Internet without interaction with the author, lessons for practice are identified. It is argued that researchers should reflexively consider the ways in which passive data collection techniques may impact the researcher prior to undertaking research, in order to ensure that researchers are adequately supported. Methodology/approach –The data described in this example were constructed around a single case study where a woman had been asked to leave a sports shop in the UK because she was breastfeeding. Not allowing breastfeeding within a business is illegal in the UK, and resulted in a protest. The study involved analysis of user-generated data from an online news site and Twitter in relation to this case. Findings - Drawing on field notes and conversations with colleagues, I argue that in order to successfully manage my emotional response to the data, it was necessary to distance myself during analysis. Originality/value – Whilst the role of emotion is often considered as part of ethnographic practice in studies utilising face-to-face data collection, it is underexplored in the online domain. This chapter presents, through a detailed example, a reflective account of the emotion work required in one such study. Strategies to reflexively manage emotion for those undertaking participant absent research, which are applicable to both online and off-line situations, are highlighted.

Item Type: Book Section
Date Type: Completion
Status: Submitted
Schools: Medicine
Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Publisher: Emerald
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2022 07:14

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