You are invited to participate in a study entitled Street-to-Screen: A Study of Information Exchange in the Digital Age of the Sex Industry. This study is being conducted by Dr. Vicky Bungay and Chris Atchison.
This research is being funded by the Social Science Research Council.
Purpose and Objectives
The purpose of this research is to better understand the diverse ways that people involved in the provision of, and payment for, sexual services use information communication technologies (ICTs) to develop and navigate relationships, exchange information and negotiate the screen-to-screen and face-to-face exchange of services. This research will put us in a better position to address the concerns that have been raised by various community groups, health agencies and legislators. The goal of this research is to provide people who have sold/provided or paid for sex with a safe and secure avenue to share their attitudes, opinions and experiences without fear of persecution or prosecution.
If you are over the age of 19 and have purchased sexual services from a sex worker/seller or have sold sexual services to a client/sex buyer, we would like to invite you to participate in this research. We are interested in hearing about different experiences from individuals coming from a variety of backgrounds in terms of age, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class and ability.
What is involved
If you agree to voluntarily participate in this research, your participation will include completing a computer assisted self-administered questionnaire (CASQ) to be filled out on the World Wide Web and returned electronically. This questionnaire should take about 30-60 minutes to complete. In the questionnaire we ask a variety of personal questions about sexual behavior, attitudes toward and experiences with, the sale and purchase of sexual services as well as questions about your background, personal health, various personal characteristics, and experience, ability, and history using ICTs.
Anonymity and Confidentiality
It is very important that you understand what we will do with the information you provide. We will not be recording your name or any other information that could be potentially used to identify you. For your own privacy and security, we would ask you to not communicate any identifying information with us through your responses to the questions asked in the questionnaire.
Your confidentiality and the confidentiality of the data you provide are very important to us and we have taken several technological precautions to help ensure that it will be protected. Each computer used in this research is protected by a combination of hardware and software firewalls and routine system log monitoring protocol. We own and operate the servers so no third parties have access to, or responsibility for, monitoring network activity relating to the research. Additionally, all of the servers we use to collect and store the information you provide reside in Canada ensuring that your information will NOT be released to agents of the United States government under the terms of the USA Patriot Act.
To ensure that no third party may access the data you provide, all information from the web-based questionnaire will be removed (flushed) from the databases that it is stored in daily and transferred to a non-networked computer. Further, in order to ensure that all data and communications produced through this research are kept secure and confidential they will be encrypted. Once encrypted, your raw data will be safely stored on an encrypted hard drive for 5 years following the study (approximately April, 2021), after which it will be destroyed.
The subject matter of the research should not put you at any risk. This research is about sex, sexuality, and the purchase and sale of sex. We ask a variety of personal questions about sexual behaviour, attitudes to and experiences with purchasing and selling sex, personal background, and various characteristics. While there is always a possibility that some participants may not feel comfortable sharing some information, since we are not asking you to provide details about any activities that violate Canadian law or to identify yourself directly, the subject matter of the research should not put you at any risk.
By taking part in this research you will help us to know and better understand what kinds of things may improve the health and safety of all people involved in the sale and purchase of sexual services. This information can also be used to develop public policy, legislation and general education campaigns that better represent these health and safety needs. While there may be no direct benefits to you from participating in this research, your participation is very important.
Your participation in this research is entirely voluntary. You do not have to answer every question we ask, and if at any point you feel that the questions asked are too personal, or in any way objectionable you may elect to skip the question or withdraw from the survey entirely without any consequences or any required explanation. If you wish to withdraw prior to completing and submitting the survey simply click on the button labeled "withdraw from survey" located in the bottom left hand corner of your browser window and all information you have provided will be permanently deleted.
Dissemination of Results
We may use the data from this research in future research projects. We may also distribute the anonymized data to other researchers for academic publication and presentation purposes. As we are not interested in collecting any of your personal data that would identify you, when we analyze, publish or share data in any way, we will maintain your anonymity and will keep your identity private and confidential.
In addition to the summary report that will be made available at https://www.street-to-screen.ca, the results of this research may be published and presented in a variety of public forums including, but not limited to: theses, scholarly publications, government and community reports, and conferences.
This research has been reviewed and approved by University of British Columbia Human Research Ethics and conforms to the standards of the Canadian Tri-Council Research Ethics guidelines. If you have any questions about this study or want to talk to us about anything in the future, you may contact Vicky Bungay at 604 822 7933 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any concerns about your rights as a research subject and/or your experiences while participating in this study, you may contact the Research Subject Information Line in the UBC Office of Research Services at 604-822-8598 or if long distance e-mail RSIL@ors.ubc.ca or call toll free 1-877-822-8598.
By completing and submitting the questionnaire, YOUR FREE AND INFORMED CONSENT IS IMPLIED and indicates that you understand the above conditions of participation in this study and that you have had the opportunity to have your questions answered by the researchers, and that you agree to participate in this research project.
By selecting "I agree to participate" below you confirm that you:
- Are over the age of 19
- Understand what is required based on reading the above conditions of participation
- Understand that your participation is voluntary and you are free to withdraw at any time
- Understand the provisions for confidentiality