Workshop Proceedings of the 14th International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media

Workshop: Workshop on Cyber Social Threats (CySoc 2020)

DOI: 10.36190/2020.11

Published: 2020-06-05
Navigating Negativity in Research: Methodological and Ethical Considerations in the Study of Antisocial, Subversive and Toxic Online Communities and Behaviours
Kimberley R. Allison

Amidst increasing recognition of the prevalence and impact of online aggression, hate and prejudice, a rapidly expanding and multidisciplinary literature has emerged exploring the many manifestations of online negativity. Despite the varied approaches employed, these studies share common methodological and ethical issues associated with the collective focus on antisocial online activities. This paper explores issues around study design, ethics and safety, and presentation of findings which are prominent in this literature, drawing from personal and previously published research experiences in order to inform a discussion of how scholars can consider and navigate the challenges inherent in this field of study.