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Call for interview volunteers!

The next stage of my vid-related research consists of interviewing vidders and vidwatchers in order to investigate vidding and vidwatching as literacy practices (see this post for more about this idea).

As I said in that post,
I'm interested in interviewing anybody who's willing to talk to me, including people who feel, or have felt in the past, that they don't (yet) know enough about vids to talk about them, who want to be able to leave substantive feedback about vids but sometimes have trouble doing so, etc. That is, I am not specifically looking for "expert opinions" on vids; I just want to talk to fans about their experiences making and/or watching vids, and especially about how they learned to make and/or watch vids.

I will be conducting interviews primarily by email, but I would like to start with in-person interviews at VividCon (yay, VividCon!), because that way I can adjust my questions as I go. One of the things I've noticed about every vid-related survey I've seen discussed is that the people filling out the survey often have very helpful suggestions for additional questions (or better ways of wording existing questions) and/or comments about which questions should be narrowed, broadened, or explained more clearly. I know that I and my research will benefit from any feedback in-person interviewees are willing to share with me before I start email interviews. (This is also why at this point I'm planning to gather information via interviews rather than surveys; my sense is that the aspects of vidding and vidwatching that I'm interested in studying can't be captured in polls and tickyboxes.)


My questions are specific to vidding and vidwatching: How do people get interested in making and watching vids? How do vidwatchers learn to make sense of vids? How do individual vidders learn to vid? How do they actually go about making vids? Of course, individuals' responses to these questions may involve talking about their personal fannish contexts or history, including particular source, specific fannish communities, or broader issues related to fandom; I assume going in that there will be some variation here. :)


Everyone who volunteers to be interviewed will receive an information sheet (which will include contact information for the University of Minnesota Research Subjects' Advocates Line) and sign a consent form. Participants may choose to be identified by the name or pseudonym they use in fandom, to be identified by a different pseudonym of their choosing, to have me assign a random pseudonym, or to be completely anonymous (identified in my own records only by a number). Participants will decide whether they will allow me to audio-record personal interviews.

Volunteers may change their mind about participating at any point in the research; they may refuse to answer individual questions and may stop or pause the interview at any time.


All hard-copy and audio records related to this research will be kept in a secure and locked location; all electronic records (including emails) will be kept on a password protected computer. I will destroy all of the research data in no more than eight years. Publications or presentations based on this research will not include any information that would make it possible to identify interview subjects beyond chosen or assigned names or pseudonyms.


All in-person interviews at VividCon will be conducted in private, not in the main con space. I am planning to arrange most interviews in advance, but will happily try to set up time to talk to volunteers who approach me at the con itself.

How to Volunteer

If you’re a vidder and/or vidwatcher and you’re willing to be interviewed for this project, email me at turkt at umn dot edu, or leave a comment on this post (all comments are screened, so only you and I will be able to see your response). If you comment on this post, be sure to include the email address at which you're willing to be contacted. If you are going to be at VividCon and are willing to volunteer for an in-person interview, please let me know that as well so that we can try to arrange a mutually convenient time to talk; I don't want to interfere with anyone's panel or vidshow attendance (including my own)! If you are going to be at VividCon but would prefer to be interviewed by email anyway, that's absolutely fine.

If you have questions about the project generally or interviews specifically, you are welcome to contact me: comment on this post, send a DW/LJ private message, or email me.

Please feel free to boost the signal by pointing your other vidding and vidwatching friends to this post!

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