Qualitative research methods in criminology have been supplanted in recent years by advanced statistical inquiries into various quantitative data sources. There is, however, an emerging body of qualitative analyses using data generated from various sources available on-line. As the Internet and computermediated communications (CMCs), such as email and instant messaging, are rapidly adopted by all manner of criminals and deviants, it is critical that qualitative criminologists recognize how this data may be examined in order to understand social phenomena. This article considers the utility of the Internet, websites, and various forms of CMCs as a source for traditional qualitative criminology inquiry. Each type is addressed in detail, along with the unique methodological and ethical concerns present in Internet-based explorations.
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