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Identification of Investigators & Purpose of Study

You are being asked to participate in a research study conducted by Ericka Menchen-Trevino from American University. The purpose of this study is to better understand how digital media consumption relates to the way that people understand the world.

Research Procedures

This study consists of web browsing history data collection, this survey, and a very brief survey immediately following this survey. In order to reach this survey, you have already begun uploading your web browsing history data. If you do not consent to participate in the research your web browsing history data will not be used for research purposes.

In this survey you will be asked to provide answers to a series of questions related to web use, media and communication, political attitudes, and your individual characteristics. This survey does link your responses to the browsing data you contributed but it does not request personally identifying information.

The brief survey that appears after this one has been completed cannot be linked to this survey or to your browsing history data. It does request identifying information to facilitate follow-up studies and to allow you to choose to stay informed about forthcoming reports and software development based on this research.

Eligible participants who complete this study will be compensated (amount).

Time Required

Participation in this study will require about 7-12 minutes of your time. (This is primarily the survey time, the time to use Web Historian is about 2-5 minutes)


This study does not involve risks beyond those encountered in everyday life.


Potential benefits from participation in this study include a better understanding of your own web browsing habits and the nature of the browsing history data that is on your computer. The research aims to better understand the role of digital media in today’s multi-media environment where TV, radio, print and interpersonal communication impact how digital media are used.


The results of this research will be presented at academic conferences and published in academic journal articles or books. The results of this project will be presented in such a way that the respondent’s identity will not be attached to the final form of this study. The researcher retains the right to use and publish non-identifiable data. While individual responses are confidential, aggregate data will be presented representing averages or generalizations about the responses as a whole.  All data will be stored in a secure location accessible only to the research team. Upon completion of the study, all information known to the researcher that matches up individual respondents with their answers will be destroyed.

Participation & Withdrawal

Your participation is entirely voluntary. You are free to choose not to participate.

Should you choose to participate, you can withdraw at any time without consequences of any kind. You may also refuse to answer any individual question without consequences.

Questions about the Study

If you have questions or concerns during the time of your participation in this study, or after its completion or you would like to receive a copy of the final aggregate results of this study, please contact:

Questions about Your Rights as a Research Subject