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Research project

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Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Here I will attach the consent form so those who will be participating can review and sign it!

Thank you so much you all, I really appreciate your help! :) If you need any help or have questions please let me know. If you have further concerns, you can contact my professor as well with any questions, her email is in my initial post!
Thank you for the attachment. In order to fill it out, we need to download it to our computer (and even though I'm sure everything is fine, I'm hesitant to download anything onto my computer if I don't have to. Also, we wouldn't be able to attach the attachment to a PM we'd send to you.)
Would you be able to post it as a part of your reply, here (as it probably was a word document initially)?
For example, it could be something like:

Survey Consent Form
I, {type name here}, give my permission...
Click here [ ]

And then we just add an "x" like so:
Survey Consent Form
I, Christine, give my permission...
Click here [x].

How would that be? :)

~~
When I set up the PM's for you and each participant, I can include your professor's email (if you'd like) in my initial PM.
In the spirit of transparency, I wanted to let you know that I'll also let the participants know that they can PM me (in a separate PM) if they're not comfortable with anything. (After I set up a PM for you and each participant, I'll remove myself from that PM - so you and the participant have privacy.)
Sometimes women are hesitant to "complain" and tend to comply with situations, even if they don't feel 100% comfortable - because as women, we're discouraged from speaking out for fear of being thought of as "whinny", "making a big deal out of nothing", etc. And again, I'm sure everything is fine here, your survey is above board, etc., but I just want to protect the members of Girls Forum and let everyone know that they don't have to feel obligated, that they don't have to do anything they don't feel comfortable doing - keeping in the spirit of this is a safe environment for everyone. I'm sure you understand. :)
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
LOL I like that ... thats a really good strategy;). I wish I would of though of that one sooner, would have saved me a lot of heartache!
That's fine, hon. Sometimes the simple-ist way of doing something is the last-ist thing we think of. :D

~~
Thank you for clarifying that it's a questionnaire and not a survey. ☺
 

Anthrodani

Member
For anyone who is willing to participate, I just want to let you know that you are not obligated to do anything or saying anything that you do not feel comfortable with. If you are willing to participate that is awesome...but at any point if you do not feel comfortable you are more than willing to back out any time, and the information you have provided will be erased and not used within my research project.

I just wanted to let you all know that so everyone feels safe with the intentions I have! :) Also I will attach the interview questions so you will all know what questions I will be asking before hand!

Interview Questions
Why did you become a member of this community?
How long have you been a member?
How much time every week (month) do you spent communicating with other members of this community?
How would you describe your role in this online community?
Are there any unique rules, values or cultural meanings within this community that you have learned while being a part of it?
Is there a relationship between your individual identity and this community?
Have you learned anything new about yourself by being in this community?
How do you feel about this community?
What does being part of an online community mean to you?
Would you have been part of a similar community if Internet access was not available?
Do you think you will continue to be a member of this community in the future?
What has caused you to keep returning to this community?
How does being a part of this community influence your offline life?
How does the advice you receive in this community aid you in solving your real-life guy troubles or relationship problems?How does giving advice in the “Guy Talk” forum make you feel?
How does receiving advice in the “Guy Talk” forum make you feel?
Have you ever disagreed with the commentary others have provided you or other members of the Girls forum? How do you respond in those cases?
 
Hi everyone!!

My name is Danielle and I am a student at York University in Toronto, Canada and I just wanted to inform you all about an exciting research project I will be conducting on the Girls Forum, specifically within this forum of "Guy Talk". I just wanted to introduce myself so you are all aware of my presence, as I will be an active member within this forum ready and willing to provide advice to anyone who is willing to listen, as well as my own struggles I am experiencing. I have been in a committed relationship for almost 4 years and I believe I have a lot that I can offer to many of you who need advice, as well as search for some of my own answers!!!

My research involves me participating in this amazing site with all of you as well as conducting 4 interviews with members who are willing to participate. Its nothing too extensive and can definitely be completed over private message or email as well! My goals are to investigate why we are drawn to such online platform and how these discussions we partake in help us with our real world experiences with men. If anyone is willing to participate that would be so greatly appreciated! You can definitely reach out to me through this thread!!

I am so looking forward to talking with many of you about everything and anything related to men, and how they never fail to affect our lives as women:)

-Danielle
Wow! This seems like a really fun project! I think it's great that your courses allow you to partake in experiences like this. I know I'm a very new member here but I've been a part of other online communities and feel that I can offer some insight for your project. I'd love to participate if you still need participants.

Also, I read through this whole chat and noticed there is some concern for "suspicious" factors. I do also wonder this but with you being so transparent with what the research entails and also offering to give your professors email and contact info so we can reach out to her for more information and legitimacy makes it so much more comforting! I don't see an issue in signing a consent form. Instead I think it acts as a safety measure.

The questions seem pretty easy to answer and don't seem like they should take too long. Based on your explanation, it seems I would be able to answer the questions in any way I want with information I'm comfortable with and also skip any questions I'm not comfortable with answering? If this is the case, I'm in!

These forums are so saturated with support and I'd love to support you in this! Let me know what you need from me! It would be great if we could do the interview process on this site itself.

Thank you!!
 

Anthrodani

Member
Wow! This seems like a really fun project! I think it's great that your courses allow you to partake in experiences like this. I know I'm a very new member here but I've been a part of other online communities and feel that I can offer some insight for your project. I'd love to participate if you still need participants.

Also, I read through this whole chat and noticed there is some concern for "suspicious" factors. I do also wonder this but with you being so transparent with what the research entails and also offering to give your professors email and contact info so we can reach out to her for more information and legitimacy makes it so much more comforting! I don't see an issue in signing a consent form. Instead I think it acts as a safety measure.

The questions seem pretty easy to answer and don't seem like they should take too long. Based on your explanation, it seems I would be able to answer the questions in any way I want with information I'm comfortable with and also skip any questions I'm not comfortable with answering? If this is the case, I'm in!

These forums are so saturated with support and I'd love to support you in this! Let me know what you need from me! It would be great if we could do the interview process on this site itself.

Thank you!!
Hi @BeautifulButterfly !

Thank you so much for your willingness to participate, it means a great deal to me! :) I want to further reiterate to you that moving forward into this process all the information you provide will be confidential and you are free to stop participating whenever you'd like and all your information will be deleted!

Yes absolutely, all your concerns will be met and the interview process can take place in a Private Message on this Girls Forum site!

I do feel it is the safest to send the consent form over email this way it can be send to you and then be sent back to me in a safe way. The consent form will be secured in a folder on my locked computer. Therefore, you can send me an email ([email protected]) and I will reply with the consent form. How does that work for you?

Let me know! Thank you so much again for your eager participation!

Best,

Danielle
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Yes, Anthrodani still needs participants because after all the information received so far (which I will post on this thread), no one else from this forum has agreed to participate in her project.

I find it interesting that no one has used the term suspicious on this thread (though I did refer to it in my personal/private message {PM} to Anthrodani, multiple times - again, please see below). What I do find suspicious is that you and Anthrodani are the same age, your IP addresses are from the same geographical region, and you both belong to the same cable company/have the same Internet Service Provider. Granted, you might be a friend of Anthrodani. But if someone didn't know better, they could read your post and think you were just another new member - when in fact, you are possibly a friend, trying to make it sound like this project is something exciting and fun (which could be interpreted as slight deception). Scammers use this technique all the time. It's called a setup. And the victim is the mark (or in this case, the other Girls Forum members). It's just one thing, but this whole situation has a lot of "little" things - and a lot of little things can add up to one big thing/problem. (I also find it interesting that a new member signed up with this forum, today, with the same IP address as Anthrodani. Again, it could be a room-mate - which would be fine. But it's just that the more time goes by, the more suspicious activity I'm finding regarding this whole "project".) As I mentioned to Anthrodani in a PM, I'm the moderator and as such, I have access to confidential information.

There was not transparency with what the research entails from the beginning. I only found out more about it by asking questions. The more questions I asked, the more information was revealed.

It is standard procedure to provide contact information of a professor/supervisor when engaging in tertiary education projects/business.

These forums are often not saturated with support. They are very often used to spam, scam, and bully/harass - believe me! The reason why members may not see it has a lot to do with who moderates the particular forum.
And because this whole situation seems very fishy/suspicious to me - again, please read the rest of the posts on this thread - I have decided to not allow this "research project" to be conducted on this forum.
After having read the messages between myself and Anthrodani, if you still wish to participate in the project (that's if you're not Anthrodani yourself), you have her email address and you can contact her there, giving her your email address, your signature, etc. - possibly handing her the piece of paper with your signature on it, in person.

Have fun and I hope you never get scammed.
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Yes absolutely, all your concerns will be met and the interview process can take place in a Private Message on this Girls Forum site!
No, I'm sorry. After everything I have read on this site pertaining to your research project, you will not be allowed to use this forum to gain confidential information from Girls Forum members. If anyone wishes to contact you, they can do so by way of your email address - though I don't recommend it.

As I mentioned in my last PM to you, I will now post the PM's between you and myself (leaving out any personal details and anything that doesn't pertain to this research project discussion) so that any potential participant in your project can read what was written.
And then I will close this thread.
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Christine!

My name is Danielle Fedrigoni, and I recently became a member of the Girls Forum a couple months ago, as this Discussion Forum site really sparked my interest. I was really intrigued with the format of this online community and was really interested in learning a lot more about it. I want to investigate how this community has allowed a place online for women to interact with others and how these interactions have a hand in improving or benefitting their real life experiences and relationships.

I am currently a university student in Toronto, Canada attending York University! I am in my fourth year of studies and am currently taking an Anthropology course that has required us to partake in a research project on an online community. I was really drawn the Girls Forum community here, as I have read through various discussion posts and have seen that many of the women on here are really interested in engaging with others and providing advice and help pertaining to all aspects of the life of a woman.

With this begin said, I have now been approved by the ethics board of York University to participate in discussion and reach out to both you the moderator and various other members on this platform. My studies will specifically focus on the "Guy Talk" forum, as I have narrowed my focus into that topic and I am so excited to begin engaging with everyone and participating in discussion to express my own current experiences as well as provide advice to others.

However, before going forward my professor (Lynda Mannik) has requested that I run my research project by you first before I begin. This project will entail me engaging in conversation within the "Guy talk" forum as well as conducting 4 interviews with members of the Girls Forum community on how they enjoy and are drawn to this site, specifically the forum in focus. For those who I conduct interviews with they will be signing a consent form that will be sent back to my University, and they will possibly take place over a zoom call or simply by email (whatever everyone is comfortable with). I would potentially be interested in interviewing you too! Additionally, in conducting this project I would like to ask for permission to screenshot some discussions so I can reflect on them within the notes I take pertaining to my project. It is important to express to you that all the information I gather will solely be viewed by myself and my professor only when she marks my project at the beginning of April, no one else will have access to my project. However, I have mentioned the girls forum to many of my friends and have influenced them to become a part of this community!

Thus, if you would allow me to go ahead I would really appreciate it! Following my project if you are interested I would be more than welcome to send you a complete copy truly explaining all the amazing qualities of this community and all that it offer various women! If you could let me know as soon as possible that would be greatly appreciated. Feel free to contact me by email as well!

-Danielle

My email: [email protected]
My Professors email: [email protected]
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

Your research project is fine with me. Thank you for taking an interest in this forum. I'm glad you like it (and thank you for mentioning it to your friends).

It's a small community so, unfortunately, there aren't a lot of active members here.

As long as any questions aren't too personal, I don't think anyone would have a problem with participating in discussions. (Screenshots are fine.) :)

Thank you for providing your contact details. I'm happy to communicate with you, here. This forum is set up so that members can't receive personal and private messages (PM) automatically. I can communicate with them (as I'm a staff member). So if any of the members agree to participate, I can send them a PM, then add you to it, then remove myself from the PM (so you and the member have privacy).

I am also interested in the topic of "Guy Talk". (That's why I put Josette Sona's book in my signature. She talks a lot about men and how they often interact with women. If you haven't read it yet, I highly recommend it, from an anthropological point of view, if nothing else.)

I'll look forward to engaging with you and reading about your experiences and listening to your advice. :)

Christine
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Christine,

I hope all is well. I just want to thank you again for all your help in organizing my research project, I really appreciate all your help :). If possible, I guess we can go ahead and create the private message chats then, this way the members can send me their emails over private message rather than in the public forum. What do you think?

-Danielle
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

I think I have a solution. We can't send attachments through private messages (PM's) - here on Girls Forum.

But if you could upload/attach the consent form to your public post, the rest of us can copy and paste it and send it to you as part of our PM to you. (I think online consent forms - even legal documents we fill out online - are set up where we click on/check a box and that serves as our signature.)

And then you could ask any questions you have in a PM? (Some people may not be comfortable giving their email addresses.)

I'll try to do it with a sample attachment (on your thread) and I'll let you know how it goes.

To be continued. :)

Christine
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

I can transfer the image from the thread to a PM but we can't (for example) check a box inside the image.

So maybe could you upload the consent form on the thread, and we can check any boxes we need to, and reply (with the filled-out form included in an attachment)?

Also, as it's just a survey, is it really necessary for you to get our "consent"? The fact that we fill out the survey means we've given our "permission", I would think. What do you think? :)

Christine :)

P.S. You may have a form/attachment that we can copy and paste into a PM. So if you could upload your consent form in your thread, I'll see if I can transfer it to this PM. Thank you again. :)
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Christine,

So it actually is an interview process, and because I will be using your responses for my final essay you must sign off and check off the boxing accordingly. For ethical purposes (I got it right this time, lol) the form has to be signed in order to move forward. Unfortunately...it is required:). Ill attach the document in the thread!

Thank you so much for your help!

-Danielle
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

Thank you for playing "post-tag" with me. :D (Our posts were criss-crossing there for a while.)

Yes, I can access/download the document but I haven't actually downloaded it, yet. I'm hoping that we can "sign" a consent form and answer the questions, and then send both to you in a PM. And (as you said), maybe you can take a screen shot of our PM to you, with our having checked off a box that serves as our "signature". And you'll have our answers that you can use in your research project. In other words, could you conduct your interview by way of us answering your questions in writing?

Thank you for accommodating us,
Christine :)
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Good morning Christine,

I have been going back and forth with my professor on how we can proceed in completing the informed consent form. So unfortunately the document does have to be signed and consent cannot be provided with the written statement in the forum, as she has informed me that this is a legal document between myself, the participant and the university and I cannot proceed without an actual signature.

I had another suggestion if you are still interested in participating. If not, that is totally okay, not stress at all! I want anyone who wants to participate to feel comfortable and safe throughout this whole process!

I have attached a new scanned version of the York University consent form with my own signature already filled in. This way if possible, (and this involves no downloading of the document) when you click the file the document pulls up in a new browser tab, correct? In this new tab you are able to simply print the form from there, sign your name and check off the boxes physically in person (all the information that must be filled out is on the third page, so I would just need a copy of that page). Once you have done that you can take a picture of it and send it back to me?

Again, if you feel you are not comfortable moving forward no worries at all! I am still very interested in exploring this discussion forum and speaking with others!

Let me know what you think! :)

-Danielle
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Christine, sorry for so many messages LOL. But i just tried myself with the document and it does not actually open in a new browser so the strategy I provided probably won't work:(. Don't stress about it then, if this is something you do not feel comfortable with we definitely do not have to proceed!! Would you be okay with me completing this consent and interview process with other Girls Forum members?
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

I have filled out U.S. Census Forms, Federal Income Tax Forms (before the Trump administration), etc., online and they all had a section where we could click on it (or type in an "x") and it served as our signature.

So I don't understand why a legal document that is just an informed consent form for a questionnaire about an online forum needs to have an actual signature. It's not like we're opening up a bank account with a safe deposit box and the bank needs a signature to verify it's us when we want to access the box.

I noticed, when I was typing my reply, that we can attach a file. But I don't see the attachment (of the new scanned version of the York University consent form with your own signature). I tried to attach a word document with this reply but this forum doesn't support the transfer of word documents in PM's. It will accept .jpeg files.

I can only speak for myself, but I don't have a printer so even if I could access the attachment, I couldn't print it out to sign and fill it out (and my laptop doesn't have a "workable" camera so I couldn't take a picture of it).

And again, I'm sure everything is legitimate involving this, but with us;

initially possibly giving the interview face to face,
needing our email address,
needing us to download something onto our laptop/computer,
needing our signature,
not being able to give our consent online (the way a lot of government departments accept us doing),

it just makes me wonder why all of this is necessary to answer questions about our experience with belonging to an online forum that's just for enjoyment and possible information?

It's not so much that I don't feel comfortable with all of this, it's just I don't understand why a legal document with York University can't be handled the way governments handle legal documents.

To be continued. :)
Christine
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Christine,

I totally understand your concerns, I really do..I've spent so much time working on this research project I've barely had time for any other school work LOL o_O

I'm not sure why there is such a difference, but I have been going back and forth with my professor over the past 24 hours and she's made it clear to me that without this consent I cannot proceed with an interview process. She explained to me that this form has been designed by the university for all students to use in conducting research, so it's not really a choice we have. At the end of the day research participation is completely voluntary and if you do not feel comfortable you are not pressured to do anything that would make you feel otherwise:)

If you do not wish to participate I totally understand but what I do ask if I can continue my research process within the girls forum as I have really enjoyed immersing myself within this site!!

Let me know, thanks Christine!

-Danielle Fedrigoni
 

Christinegirl

Well-Known Member
Hi Danielle,

I'm sorry you've spent so much time working on this project, too. As a moderator here, I've spent more time on this issue than I have with any other issues (and I'm not payed for my time, this isn't a part of my education, thesis, etc.) I'm not on the internet because I'm bored and/or I have nothing else to do in my life.

Sadly, we wouldn't have had to spend as much time as we have if we could just answer the questions you've listed (and send them in a PM to you).

I don't understand what it has to do with "ethics". When I became a moderator (on this forum and another forum I worked at), I didn't have to sign a document - and I'm able to look at people's PM's (if I don't remove myself from the conversation), and other confidential information. My aunt had to sign an "ethics" document when she started working for Child Protective Services but your questionnaire is just about our experiences with an online forum. I could understand if it was a questionnaire/research about clinical/medical trials (for example), but again, we're living in a technological world where many legal documents are "signed" online instead of us having to sign them the way documents were signed in a pre-internet/computer world.

But this is how York University is set up so this is the procedure we need to follow, I guess.

As I mentioned, I don't have a printer so I won't be participating. Also, I'm not really comfortable with giving my signature to someone I just met online from a university where who knows whether someone can hack into the database and access the documents to forge our signature and use it to steal our identity. I know it sounds paranoid but this has happened. (And you'd be surprised to know how many people sign up with this forum for the sole purpose of spamming, scamming, etc.) And no matter how secure a company/business/institute of higher learning's computer system is, intelligent students have been known to hack into them. I'm not saying this would happen, but do I want to take that chance - just to fill out an online questionnaire? I'm sorry, but no.

...Because I am currently the only active staff member here, ... I can make a judgement call - and I feel the other participants have a right to know what procedures they need to follow (and the risks involved) in order to participate in your research project. (It's not just answering a few questions about their experience, here at Girls Forum.)

Looking forward to your reply,
Christine :)
 
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