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How to Adapt Conventional Methodologies to an Online Format: Document Analysis


Hookway, N, How to Adapt Conventional Methodologies to an Online Format: Document Analysis, SAGE Research Methods: Doing Research Online, SAGE Publications Ltd, K Figiel (ed), United Kingdom ISBN 9781529609561 (2022) [Research Book Chapter]

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DOI: doi:10.4135/9781529609561


The rise of Web 2.0 and digital social media has not only reshaped social and cultural life but also significantly remade the practice of doing social research. The intimate but public nature of contemporary digital cultures creates new opportunities for researchers interested in analysing personal ‘documents of life’. From ‘coming-out videos’ on YouTube and blogs about everyday morality to Instagram posts about family life, this guide provides practical insights and advice for researchers looking to do digital ‘documents of life’ research. The guide briefly overviews the history of personal document research and the differences and similarities between online and offline documents. Drawing upon metaphors of ‘miner’, ‘traveller’, and ‘gardener’, the guide outlines three key approaches to collecting online documents. This guide helps researchers assess the quality of online documents and outlines key strategies and tools for collecting and analysing internet texts. The guide concludes with a discussion of the ethics of researching publicly available texts and the need for a contextual approach which acknowledges the complexities of privacy online and different ethical and digital affordances.

Item Details

Item Type:Research Book Chapter
Keywords:digital methods, online research methods, human documents research
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Sociology
Research Field:Sociological methodology and research methods
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Hookway, N (Dr Nicholas Hookway)
ID Code:150335
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2022-06-08
Last Modified:2023-03-06

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