One Does Not Simply Analyze Tracking Data: Challenges of Utilizing Large-Scale Tracking Collections for Communication Research

Adam, Silke; Maier, Michaela; Aigenseer, Viktor; Makhortykh, Mykola; Ulloa, Roberto; Urman, Aleksandra; Christner, Clara; Gil-Lopez, Teresa (28 May 2022). One Does Not Simply Analyze Tracking Data: Challenges of Utilizing Large-Scale Tracking Collections for Communication Research (Unpublished). In: 72nd Annual ICA Conference - "One world, one network?!". Paris, France. 26.05.-30.05.2022.

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Digital tracking data provides new possibilities for studying information behavior. However, the analysis of tracking data poses multiple challenges, in particular for more "greedy" approaches which aim to maximize the volume of captured information (e.g., using denylists instead of allowlists and tracking not only visits, but the actual content which the tracked individuals engage with). These challenges range from the necessity of more restrictive access and storage protocols to the additional data (pre)processing pipelines required to filter out sensitive content and retrieve information for studying specific phenomena (e.g., news repertoires or selective exposure). In our talk, we discuss our experiences of tackling these challenges in the context of using desktop-based tracking research to study information behavior in Germany and Switzerland, using the internally developed WebTrack tool.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Communication and Media Studies (ICMB)

UniBE Contributor:

Adam, Silke; Makhortykh, Mykola and Urman, Aleksandra

Subjects:

000 Computer science, knowledge & systems
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology

Language:

English

Submitter:

Mykola Makhortykh

Date Deposited:

23 Jun 2022 15:02

Last Modified:

23 Jun 2022 15:02

Uncontrolled Keywords:

web tracking, methodology, WebTrack, information behavior, big data, data preprocessing

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/170661

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