Practicum post #1 before presentation: Support Groups

For my practicum assignment I was assigned to look at support groups and I chose to do an ethnographic study on “loss of a pet” support groups. I found this project really hit home with me because I am such a dog lover and grew up with 2-3 dogs my entire life. Since it is so hard parting with them I thought that joining this support group would be both interesting and even maybe a little helpful. Tomorrow I plan on giving my presentation and asking the following question.

 

Question: Is not disclosing your identity unethical in an online support group?

Also I plan to show 30 seconds of this clip and I hope it will tug a little on everyone’s hearts like it did mine! I’ll keep everyone posted on my progress with research project!

 

Clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4IcvnlGjhg

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Tween Chatting: Part 1

For my practicum project, I had to partake in some sort of chat room with tweens.  Tweens (according to Wikipedia) is the stage between middle childhood and adolescence in human development.  Firstly, I searched “tween chat rooms” on Google, and chose the first or second link offered.  This took me to a site titled “Chathour.”

Being that Chathour came up on my search engine under “tween chat rooms” I assumed it was specifically designed for tweens.  I of course am not a tween, let alone a teen, so I decided to make myself a 13-year-old girl.  Little did I know, you could be of any age to register on this site.

The site is fairly plain with amateur graphics and design.  The main colors are green and black, and the profiles are slightly reminiscent of Myspace.  Upon entering the site you are brought to a general chat room titled “weirdtown.”  Being that I was unsure of how to enter other chats, I remained in the “weirdtown” chat and tried to do some research.  I consistently attempted to write in the chat things like “hey I’m new here, can anyone tell me how to work this” or “how does this site work? im new!” Every time without fail no one would acknowledge my request for more information, and I would likely get a reply from a disgusting older man asking if I wanted to video chat.

Next time I plan to enter different chats and see if other rooms are more likely to help me out with getting acquainted with the site.