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Ethics of Social Media Research

Dr Caroline Moraes

Academy of Marketing Research Initiative Funding 2012-2013


Dr Nina Michaelidou (Loughborough University)

Close up of fingers typing on a computer keyboard

Are Consumers Fully Aware of How They Are Being Researched Online and Do They Have any Ethical Concerns?

The centre is currently exploring whether consumers are fully aware of, and concerned with, the common ethical pitfalls in the various types of social media research conducted by marketers and marketing academics, and whether such consumer attitudes and concerns have an impact on consumers’ willingness to take part in social media research. Social media have become increasingly seductive as tools to gather marketing information about consumers without their full awareness, but there are many new ethical issues specific to online research approaches which must be explored and addressed.

We believe this study has much potential for practical and methodological contributions, as consumers’ perspectives on current online research ethics as explored through a mixed methods approach can inform future ethics committees’ debates, redesigns of professional research ethics codes and the conduct of online research more generally. 

For more information, please visit the project blog: Social Media Research Ethics

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