Online Sampling: Collecting Data related to Political Online ...

Online Sampling: Collecting Data related to Political Online ...

The possible use of local political online forums to engage young people in local politics. Kerill Dunne Overview

Background / definitions Criteria / forum type Methodology Sampling strategy Data entry Concepts Findings Political disengagement ! & Young People Participatory budgeting Hazel Blears (the new communities

secretary) 10 pilot projects allowing citizens to direct local spending Local Political Online Forums What is political? What is an online forum? Criteria Political criteria Online fora criteria

1 Necessary public action required Situated on the English speaking World Wide Web. 2 There has to be public choice on local issues. Do not require registration to read posts

3 Absence of independent ground i.e. conflicting viewpoints The general layout is not that of a blog or a listserv or email list (unless list has achieved threads). There must be (the potential for) more than one contributor, each providing distinct, signed input, which remains on a message / discussion / bulletin threaded board.

4 Issues which affect all participants Moderated or un-moderated 5 Forums which are exclusionary i.e. the republicans forum will not be collected. Nor will

forums which are set up for one single issue i.e. environmentalism. A rules based framework Criteria con 6 There must be a thread dedicated to a village, town or city; not just threads for province, state or international

issues. However, forums set up exclusively for local issues may contain some wider issues. In the most general sense provides a format for citizens to participate in local / national decision making or input into policy formation 7 All citizens, private organisations and government officials must be allowed participate within.

8 Can be independently, privately or governmentally run. Design East Harlem Online Discussion Forums - po wered by vBulletin East Harlem Online Discussion Forums P olitics Oxfordshire Forums Oxfordshire Forums - Abingdon

Analytic Induction Analytic induction is an approach to the analysis of data in which the research seeks universal explanations of phenomena by pursuing the collection of data until no cases that are inconsistent with a hypothetical explanation (deviant or negative cases) of a phenomena are found (Bryman, 2004. p400) 5 sampling strategies tried & rejected

Random geographic sampling Quota (non-random) sampling Cluster Random numbers Random numbers with Googles omitted results Sampling strategy used 5 search phrases were developed

Internet as a whole focused on Googles most relevant search result pages used All pages & forums examined This sample has an under representation of sites with few links to them Phrase Number of forums

Number of Google pages 1 Online political discussion forum 814 82 2 Local politics discussion forum

440 44 3 Community online discussion forum 859 86 4 Local government council online forum

780 78 5 Local politics message board 500 50 3393 340

Total Data entry Software / commissioners Active

Select group Evidence Relevant debate Web address / email / location Posts / threads / users/ exist Political model; Participatory type; Platform for deliberation Data entry con

Enveloped 138 Q&C Missing data Participatory type Non Participation Pseudo participation Partial participation

Full participation Deliberation Mixed discourses and modes of communication Rational deliberation redefined Non-rational, non-consensual deliberation Participatory democratic models

Protective thin democracy Plural thin democracy Direct democracy Unitary democracy Strong Democracy Preliminary findings

Software and commissioners influence Not much activity Influence on local government Moderation / administration Posts 3333. Users 1411 Preliminary findings con.. Deliberation Evidence Preliminary findings con..

Political Model Participatory type Deliberative form Conclusion Questions?

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