CaSMa in The Conversation: Most of us don’t read the social media small print – and it’s a data goldmine for third parties

image-20150615-5816-5huim1The history of human experiments often focuses on biomedical research and the gradual changes in acceptable practice and ethical considerations. But another class of human experiments that has had its own share of controversies is the study of human behaviour.

Internet Mediate Human Behaviour Research (IMHBR) is primarily defined by its use of the internet to obtain data about participants. While some of the research involves active participation with research subjects directly engaging with the research, for example through online surveys or experimental tasks, many studies take advantage of “found text” in blogs, discussion forums or other online spaces, analyses of hits on websites, or observation of other types of online activity such as search engine histories or logs of actions in online games.

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