The relevance of quality standards for international online access panels

Date of publication: April 17, 2005

Author: A. J. Olivier


Early initiatives of many industry bodies (ESOMAR, MRS, ADM, SYNTEC, MOA) have proactively taken initiatives to formulate guidelines for online research. However, as the industry was then still learning how to conduct an online survey, relevant topics were missed in these early guidelines. Moreover these local guidelines differed from each other and, as many online surveys have an international character, the market is at present largely unregulated. Therefore it is often difficult to learn exactly what quality standard, if any, is being applied. As long as the quality definitions are unknown or blurred, online panels will stay under the suspicion of being a somewhat unreliable or unpredictable research tool.

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