By Jessica Szadziewicz, Prospect Information Specialist, Northwestern University
On March 25, 2015, APRA Illinois will be hosting its first Salon, with the theme of ethics and social media. Historically, a salon was a gathering to exchange ideas during the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries in Europe. The host, often a woman, facilitated discussion concerning society, literature, politics, etc. The salon encouraged thought and discussion, while mixing members of the aristocracy and the bourgeois. In England, salons were held in coffee houses where new tea and coffee (containing caffeine) from the colonies stimulated conversation and ideas. Therefore, we will be meeting in a café in the Loop.
APRA Illinois hopes to re-create this environment of learning and idea exchange between professionals by discussing a different topic a few times a year. Although prospect researchers and development professionals across institutions do many of the same things, they do not always do it in the same way. The salon is the perfect setting to explore not only differences in process, but also tricky situations that do not necessarily have a clear answer.
Our first theme will be the ethics of using social media for prospect research. The two articles we will discuss are currently posted with the event description on the APRA-IL website. The first, “Is it Ethical to Gather Social Data for Prospect Research?” by Sarah Bernstein, examines social media research in conjunction with APRA’s social media ethics statement. The second, “Researcher Sued for Scraping!” by Jen Filla, further discusses the issue of scraping LinkedIn and questions the legality and ethics of data scraping from social media sites. This is a very timely article that refers to the recent conversation that occurred on the PRSPCT-L listserv.
We will begin our discussion with these two articles and see where the conversation takes us. Please feel free to bring any additional reading materials, articles, or questions. A benefit of the salon is its fluidity and flexibility; where we end the conversation might be far from where we began it.
We hope to see you on March 25th at Panera at 2 N. Michigan Avenue!