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There ain ́t no such thing as a free lunch: What consumers think about personal data collection online
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This study examines how consumers reason and their opinions about personal data collection online. Its focus is to investigate whether consumers consider online data collection as an issue with moral implications, and if these are unethical. This focus is partly motivated by the contradiction between consumers’ stated opinions and actual behavior, which differ. To meet its purpose, the study poses the research question How is personal data collection and its prevalence online perceived and motivated by consumers?. The theoretical framework consists of the Issue-Contingent Model of Ethical Decision-Making by Jones (1991), thus putting the model to use in a new context. Collection of data for the study was done by conducting focus groups, since Jones’ model places ethical decision- making in a social context. The results of the study showed that consumers acknowledge both positive and negative aspects of online data collection, but the majority of them do not consider this data collection to be unethical. This result confirms partly the behaviour that consumers already display, but does not explain why their stated opinions do not match this. Thus, this study can be seen as an initial attempt at clarifying consumer reasoning on personal data collection online, with potential for future studies to further investigate and understand consumer online behaviour.

Abstract [sv]

Denna uppsats undersöker hur konsumenter resonerar och tänker kring insamling av personlig data på Internet. Fokus är att utreda ifall konsumenter anser att denna insamling har konsekvenser, och ifall dessa anses vara oetiska. Detta fokus baseras delvis på resultat som visar på skillnader i vad konsumenter uttrycker för åsikter kring detta ämne, och deras faktiska beteende på Internet. Undersökningen utgår ifrån forskningsfrågan som lyder Hur uppfattar och motiverar konsumenter insamling av personlig data på Internet? Studiens teoretiska ramverk består av modellen An Issue-Contingent model of Ethical Decision- Making som är utvecklad av Jones (1991), och modellen används därmed i en ny kontext. Studiens data samlades in genom fokusgrupper. Detta val baserades på Jones (1991) modell, som menar att etiskt beslutsfattande alltid sker i en social kontext. De resultat som kommit fram visar att konsumenter ser både positiva och negativa aspekter och konsekvenser av att ha sin personliga data insamlad, däremot utan att anse att insamlingen i sig är oetisk. Detta bekräftar delvis tidigare resultat, men förklarar inte varför de åsikter konsumenter uttrycker kring ämnet inte stämmer överens med hur de sedan faktiskt beter sig. Därmed kan den här uppsatsen ses som ett första försök att klargöra hur konsumenter resonerar kring insamling av personlig data på Internet. Det har bedömts finnas mycket potential för framtida studier inom samma område, för att fortsatt undersöka och förstå konsumenters beteende på Internet.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , p. 52
Keyword [en]
Big Data, Ethics, Consumer Behaviour, Privacy, Digital Marketing
Keyword [sv]
Etik, Företagsetik, Konsumentbeteende, Datainsamling, Marknadsföring
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-315656OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-315656DiVA, id: diva2:1075067
Subject / course
Business Studies
Educational program
Freestanding course
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-03-02 Created: 2017-02-17 Last updated: 2017-03-02Bibliographically approved

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