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Internet Inquiry

Internet Inquiry
Conversations About Method

Edited by:

July 2008 | 264 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
This collection of dialogues is the only textbook of its kind. Internet Inquiry: Conversations About Method takes students into the minds of top internet researchers as they discuss how they have worked through critical challenges as they research online social environments. Editors Annette N. Markham and Nancy K. Baym illustrate that good research choices are not random but are deliberate, studied, and internally consistent. Rather than providing single "how to" answers, this book presents distinctive and divergent viewpoints on how to think about and conduct qualitative internet studies.

Key Features and Benefits  
  • Presents each chapter in the form of a question in order to provoke explicit consideration of key issues
  • Illustrates choices made within larger disciplinary contexts to help students blend approaches, think broadly, and conduct internet research with the benefit of multiplicity
  • Offers a range of perspectives in each chapter to vividly demonstrate that there are many ways to answer methodological challenges well
  • Includes contributors from multiple disciplines and across the globe
  • Provides a highly reflexive writing style that allows readers to see processes that are rarely visible in finished research reports
Intended Audience  
This edited volume is an excellent supplementary text for a variety of advanced undergraduate and graduate courses such as Internet Research, Research Methods, Qualitative Research Methods, and Computer-Mediated Communication in the departments of communication, media studies, sociology, and anthropology. It will assist new scholars as well as seasoned practitioners in this arena make informed choices in how they conduct inquiry.

Nancy Baym, Annette Markham
Introduction: Making Smart Choices on Shifting Ground
Christine Hine, Lori Kendall, danah boyd
1. How can qualitative internet researchers define the boundaries of their projects?
Shani Orgad, Maria Bakardjieva, Radhika Gajjala
2. How can researchers make sense of the issues involved in collecting and interpreting online and offline data?
Malin Sveningsson Elm, Elizabeth A. Buchanan, Susannah R. Stern
3. How do various notions of privacy influence decisions in qualitative internet research?
Lori Kendall, Jenny Sunden, John Edward Campbell
4. How do issues of gender and sexuality influence the structures and processes of qualitative internet research?
Annette Markham, Elaine Lally, Ramesh Srinivasan
5. How can qualitative researchers produce work that is meaningful across time, space, and culture?
Nancy Baym, Annette Markham
6. What constitutes quality in qualitative internet research?

The volume is a great introduction to some of the core and common issues that come up when researchers start using internet inquiry as a methodological strategy.

Dr Tiago Lapa
Sociology , ISCTE-IUL
October 5, 2015

One of the best overviews of the particularities of internet research I have seen, that is clear and accessible to students of all levels.

Dr Adrienne Shaw
Media Studies and Production, Temple University
July 29, 2013

Very interesting book but not really suited for a Masters course.

I would still recommend it as supplemental reading.

Mr Ajay Bailey
Population Research Centre, University of Groningen, Groningen University (RuG)
June 19, 2012

In my opinion, one of the best texts available for those undertaking internet research from undergraduate through to postgraduate study. Excellent

Ms Julia Kennedy
Faculty of Art, University College Falmouth
May 30, 2012

A useful resource for people considering using the Internet in their research

Dr Carol Bond
Institute of Health and Community Studies, Bournemouth University
January 12, 2010

This will be an invaluable resource for the appropriate methods section of the course. Clearly written and accessible for undergraduates.

Mr Clive McGoun
The Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education, Manchester Metropolitan University
December 3, 2009
Key features
  • ·         Designed to address basic issues that arise when studying computer-mediated communication. Students as well as unskilled and skilled researchers will benefit from hearing various viewpoints regarding these key issues. 
  • ·         Benefits any qualitative researcher, because it discusses contemporary issues that will become more and more common as computer-mediated communication becomes more acceptable and even necessary as a means of conducting studies of social life.
  • ·         Typical masters or doctoral student will benefit from its direct relevance to and use in the production of a thesis.  Very few methodology articles and books contain specific "how to" advice for novice researchers.  Even fewer present competing viewpoints on how to conceptualize, design, and carry out research.  Internet Inquiry: Dialogue Among Researchers does both.
  • ·         Each chapter is titled as a question.  At the end of each chapter, after the author has offered his or her essay addressing the question and provided some key reading references, another experienced internet researcher provides comments.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Question 1

Question 2

Question 3