Mother. Fucker. Remember those CCPA scam emails (I wrote about at blog.freeradical.zone/post/ccp)? Well, if you got one, turns out you were the unwitting participant in a human subject research study by Princeton University (see privacystudy.cs.princeton.edu).

If you lost any sleep or money dealing with this, they're the ones who owe it to you.

@pluralistic This seems like something you'd be interested in. The short version is that Princeton and Radboud Universities sent scary-sounding CCPA compliance emails to a lot of test subjects who didn't volunteer to participate in their research, including lots of Mastodon admins.

@tek @pluralistic

"""
Please contact the lead researcher for this study, Ross Teixeira (rapt@princeton.edu), if you have any questions, believe you received an email in error, or would like to opt out of any future communication related to the study. The additional members of the study team are Professor Jonathan Mayer at the Princeton University Center for Information Technology Policy and Professor Gunes Acar at the Radboud University Digital Security Group.
"""

Well then.

@rysiek @pluralistic Fuck that guy. I'm contacting Princeton's Research Integrity & Assurance department at ria.princeton.edu/report-conce .

@tek @rysiek @pluralistic

What do you think of this then:
> Did an Institutional Review Board consider this study?

> We submitted an application detailing our research methods to the
> Princeton University Institutional Review Board, which determined that
> our study does not constitute human subjects research. The focus of
> the study is understanding website policies and practices, and emails
> associated with the study do not solicit personally identifiable
> information.

@csddumi @tek @pluralistic that's a load of bull. This affected real human lives, people lost sleep and perhaps money over this. This is a human subject study even if they fail to understand it.

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@csddumi @tek @pluralistic but more importantly, it's another example that researchers seem to not understand that people behind FLOSS and open Internet are actual humans. They see systems and miss the fact that these are operated *by humans*.

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@rysiek @csddumi @tek @pluralistic It's not the first time that there has been unethical research done by universities on the fediverse.

@bob got any links to write-ups about previous such situations?

@rysiek @bob About three years ago there were some academic papers published about the fediverse based on scraped data. None of the people involved had been asked whether they wanted their personally identifiable information to become part of an academic data set.

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