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Researching Fantasy Sports Using Mixed- and Multi-Methods

By: Rebecca Joyce Kissane Published: 2018 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases in Sociology
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In this research methods case, I provide readers with a sense of the benefits to triangulating multiple types of data to study fantasy sports as well as some of the practical issues involved in conducting such research. Through my mixed- and multi-methods approach, I am able to gain a broad swath of information about a relatively large sample of fantasy sports players (e.g., through a survey); in-depth understandings of how fantasy sports players view the hobby, their and others' places in it, and their participation more generally (e.g., through qualitative interviews); and revealing points of comparison among what everyday players experience, what industry professionals focus upon, and what posters in anonymized settings display (e.g., through ethnographic research at a fantasy sports conference and content analyses of message and chat forums). With any method comes both positives and negatives, and this study is no exception. In this case method, I discuss a few of the practicalities of doing this sort of research, focusing in detail on my role as both an insider and outsider within this space.

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