Perspectives from the sociology of scientific knowledge are deployed to explore
the birth of Internet Research, focusing in particular on the development of
methodological approaches. For a researcher based in the sociology of scientific
knowledge, being an Internet Researcher has been a vivid opportunity to experience
at first-hand a phenomenon usually studied from the outside. The paper begins
by assessing some models of the process of scientific change. Characterizing
Internet Research as new has been a potent resource for enrolling researchers
into the field and positioning research responses. The development of virtual
methods for doing social research illustrates the process of methodological
innovation in social science and the negotiation of methodological adequacy.
Methodological discussions have been enlivened by the advent of the Internet
as an object of study. Internet Research has arguably been a valuable reflexive
opportunity for the traditional disciplines which have fed its development.
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