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Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Mariann Hardey

This chapter critically evaluates the literature on digital consumer data and the ways in which it can be used in digital social research. The chapter illuminates how…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter critically evaluates the literature on digital consumer data and the ways in which it can be used in digital social research. The chapter illuminates how researchers have to conceptualise and negotiate digital data, focusing upon ethical and procedural challenges of employing digital methods.

Approach

The chapter draws upon and integrates a broad research literature from sociology, digital media studies, business and marketing, as these have opened up new directions for research design and method. It advocates interdisciplinary approaches to conceptualising what digital data is employing the concept of ‘marketing narratives’ to understand how the new visibilities of consumer data are shaped by related processes of branding and the interactivity of content.

Findings

The chapter shows how the capacities of digital technologies present significant challenges for researchers and organisations that have to be carefully negotiated if the potentials of digital consumer data are to be harnessed. In addition, researchers should pay attention to novel issues of ethical responsibility in the context of the longer-term presence of data records.

Value

The chapter offers a set of guidelines for digital social researchers in negotiating the meanings of visible digital consumer data, the ethical and proprietary issues involved in utilising digital methods.

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Abstract

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

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Abstract

Details

Digital Theology: A Computer Science Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-535-4

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Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Abstract

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

To view the access options for this content please click here
Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Robin James Smith

This chapter critically discusses implications of working with ‘big data’ from the perspective of qualitative research and methodology. A critique is developed of the…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter critically discusses implications of working with ‘big data’ from the perspective of qualitative research and methodology. A critique is developed of the analytic troubles that come with integrating qualitative methodologies with ‘big data’ analyses and, moreover, the ways in which qualitative traditions themselves offer a challenge, as well as contributions, to computational social science.

Design/methodology/approach

The chapter draws on Interactionist understandings of social organisation as an ongoing production, tied to and accomplished in the actual practices of actual people. This is a matter of analytic priority but also points to a distinctiveness of sociological work which may be undermined in moving from the study of such actualities, suggesting an alternative coming crisis of empirical sociology.

Findings

A cautionary tale is offered regarding the contribution and character of sociological analysis within the ‘digital turn’. It is suggested that ‘big data’ analyses of traces abstracted from actual people and their practices not only miss and distort the relation of social practice to social product but, consequentially, can take on an ideological character.

Originality/value

The chapter offers an original contribution to current discussions and debates surrounding ‘big data’ by developing enduring critiques of sociological methodology and analysis. It concludes by pointing to contributions and interventions that such an empirical programme of qualitative research might make in the context of the ‘digital turn’ and is of value to those working at the interface of traditional and digital(ised) inquiries and methods.

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Martin Hand

To outline the current trajectories in digital social research and to highlight the roles of qualitative research in those trajectories.

Abstract

Purpose

To outline the current trajectories in digital social research and to highlight the roles of qualitative research in those trajectories.

Design/methodology/approach

A secondary analysis of the primary literature.

Findings

Qualitative research has shifted over time in relation to rapidly changing digital phenomena, but arguably finds itself in ‘crisis’ when faced with algorithms and ubiquitous digital data. However, there are many highly significant qualitative approaches that are being pursued and have the potential to contextualize, situate and critique narratives and practices of data.

Originality/value

To situate current debates around methods within longer trajectories of digital social research, recognizing their conceptual, disciplinary and empirical commitments.

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 29 January 2020

Massimo Ragnedda and Maria Laura Ruiu

Abstract

Details

Digital Capital
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-553-5

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Book part
Publication date: 30 May 2017

Abstract

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Brazil
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-785-4

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Book part
Publication date: 30 November 2018

Mingli Mei, Ru Zhao and Miaochen Zhu

This study investigated four different economic level areas of China (Shanghai, Shandong, Shaanxi, and Guizhou) to analyze the eastern and western urban and rural media…

Abstract

This study investigated four different economic level areas of China (Shanghai, Shandong, Shaanxi, and Guizhou) to analyze the eastern and western urban and rural media service status at different development stages. This set of data comes from the comparison of regional urban and rural areas and indicates the various aspects of differences in the survey area, including the media use habits, media resources, media consumer demand, evaluation of media services, the role of media in public life, public knowledge level, and so on. On analyzing data comprehensively, one thing can be found that there is a positive correlation between the public media contact degree and the public knowledge level. The media plays an extremely important role in public life and regional public knowledge gap between urban and rural areas exists. Furthermore, this gap is positively correlated to the media resources and media exposure. The trend of media using on mobile phone and computer in urban areas increases significantly greater than in rural areas. Then, how to narrow the urban–rural and regional public knowledge gap and reduce the negative impact of the digital divide will be an important urgent task.

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Book part
Publication date: 3 November 2014

Sam Hillyard

This chapter describes how the technologies of big data might apply to rural contexts. It considers the relative advantages and disadvantages of such ‘new’ innovations.

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter describes how the technologies of big data might apply to rural contexts. It considers the relative advantages and disadvantages of such ‘new’ innovations.

Design/methodology/approach

It uses two case studies, one of online community specialist groups linked to rural activities and a second from a policy shift relating to firearm legislation in the English context.

Findings

The chapter suggests that digital data in the forms discussed here can be both benign and underutilised in its potential. In relation to the management of datasets holding information on firearm owners, these need careful reflection regarding their establishment, access and general use.

Originality/value

The chapter provides insight into the rural context and makes a case that such locales are not immune from the influence of the dataverse. The appearance of ‘big data’ here is not without political implications. The case of UK firearm legislation reform demonstrates the implications of policy falling short of its potential and how a social science analysis can unpack the operation of power as well as position the debate more broadly.

Details

Big Data? Qualitative Approaches to Digital Research
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-050-6

Keywords

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