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Digital Folk survey. Please take part!

03 Oct 16 - 11:56 AM (#3812520)
Subject: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Dr. Lucy Wright

Hi Mudcatters,

My name is Lucy Wright and I'm a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Sheffield (I also dance with Waters Green Morris from Macclesfield, and sang with the English folk band, Pilgrims' Way, for the last six years).

My colleague, Simon Keegan-Phipps and I are currently working on a project called Digital Folk (www.digitalfolk.org), which looks at the ways in which developments in digital technology are influencing participation in folk and traditional music and dance.

We have recently relaunched our online survey, and would like to invite you to contribute your experiences and opinions. It should take around 10 minutes, depending on how long your answers are! We would be enormously grateful for your help.

The link to the survey is:
03 Oct 16 - 12:02 PM (#3812521)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: FreddyHeadey

Click...
https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/digitalfolk?sm=ylt7HmQ4Ksiqm%2fLEO651xoVz1pglvbu5ndWeWJO1TUE%3d


03 Oct 16 - 12:13 PM (#3812522)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

Don't you have a simple one page text file of questions to fill in? Those surveymonkey things are a pain in the arse to go through.


03 Oct 16 - 01:03 PM (#3812533)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: DMcG

If you fill it in, be aware they ask you first about social media, then websites, the discussion groups. So if you think of mudcat as social media, you think dawn I should have put it under websites and then you get to discussion groups and aren't sure.if they think mudcat should go there or if they only mean things like usenet.


Designing a good survey is not easy.


03 Oct 16 - 05:06 PM (#3812596)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: keberoxu

you mean, darn i should have put it?


03 Oct 16 - 05:17 PM (#3812597)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: DMcG

Yes. As usual I spot typos just after I pressed submit. :(


04 Oct 16 - 09:04 AM (#3812673)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST

the other links above are

https://www.digitalfolk.org/

&
mailto:l.j.wright@sheffield.ac.uk


Lucy, Mudcat might be Digital
but maybe not as you'd know it
... if you're adding any more links here you'll need the "Make a link ("blue clicky")"
http://www.mudcat.org/blickifier.cfm
;)


04 Oct 16 - 09:13 AM (#3812674)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

OK, clicked on that.

No text questionnaire, just the SurveyMonkey garbage. Not going there. I'm not about to get led through a bunch of questions which will often seem to me to be asking entirely the wrong thing with no chance to break out of the sequence and comment. Ludicrous waste of time.


04 Oct 16 - 10:40 AM (#3812684)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: punkfolkrocker

Dr. Lucy Wright - As you can see... it's a big ask trying to get old folkies to co-operate with computer based research and digital surveys...
.. when so many of them are still so resistant & hostile to even musical instruments powered by that newfangled electricity..... 😜


04 Oct 16 - 10:59 AM (#3812688)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

The first data entry device I used was an IBM cardpunch terminal in 1967.

SurveyMonkey's user interface is a few centuries older than that - it's modelled on the Catholic catechism.


04 Oct 16 - 11:00 AM (#3812689)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Will Fly

I started the survey but, without knowing the extent and breadth of the topics in advance, it was difficult to know what to answer where. So I gave up after a few pages.

Most of the online surveys I've done have had a clear agenda and a range of options to choose from - with space to expand on. More clinical but simpler to get through.

(From: an old musician - also an ex-programmer, computer systems manager whose been using all makes of Mac and Windows-based machines for the last 30 years. AND I play my guitars through a Roland Cube with K&K pickups! So yah boo sucks to PFR. (tee-hee...).


04 Oct 16 - 11:16 AM (#3812692)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,Peter C

Just did the survey, only took a few minutes, and not at all life threatening! (Well not yet!)


04 Oct 16 - 11:38 AM (#3812699)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: punkfolkrocker

..sorry mates... couldn't resist it*..

I've actually just bought my first new acoustic instrument for probably over a decade...

[an entry level Regal Squareneck 'Dobro' copy - brand new, knocked down from over 300 quid to 100 - again.. couldn't resist* it...]

.. * 'low resistance' is possibly a really shite electrical pun....??? 🙄


04 Oct 16 - 01:59 PM (#3812724)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: FreddyHeadey

Here is some text from a couple of their pages, it's worth looking further :
https://www.digitalfolk.org/research-contexts/
The questions asked by Digital Folk cover a range of activities. We have identified seven key contexts in which folk arts participation comes into direct and meaningful contact with digital media and technology.

The boundaries between these contexts are not fixed, and we recognise that many kinds of digital activity will fall between or across multiple categories. Nevertheless, classifying the wide variety of relevant behaviours and practices will help us to better conceptualise and study the field.

Personal Learning
Session Recording
Private Collecting
Online Discussion
Specialist Research
Technical Development
Public Organisations & Initiatives



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
https://www.digitalfolk.org/research-questions/
What digital tools and resources do folk artists in England use?
a) What are the most common uses of digital tools and resources?
b) What effect does culture have on the use of digital tools and resources?

Do folk artists that are involved in different traditions/cultures utilise digital tools and resources in the same ways, and for the same
purposes?

How do folk artists in England engage with digital tools and resources?
a) Do folk artists consider the use of modern digital tools and resources in relation to the 'folk' nature of the music they perform?
b) To what extent, if any, is the relationship between folk practitioners and digital materials different across different folk activities?

What are the effects of digital tools and resources on the folk arts in England?
a) What impact have digital tools and resources had on the popularity and profile of folk arts in England?
b) What can we see has changed and what might change soon?


----
The Survey Monkey answers can be left blank/skipped.
To give you some thinking time...

1. Where are you based?

2. What is your age? /    /    /    /    /    /

3. What folk/traditional activities do you take part in?

4. For approximately how long have you been participating in these activities?

~~~
5. Do you use social media sites?

6. How often ?

7. Which ones?

8. What impact do you think social media has had on your participation in folk activities?

~~~
9. Do you use folk-oriented websites (i.e. websites specifically designed for folk/traditional activities)?

10. how often ?

11. Which ones?

12. What's your main reason for visiting these folk-oriented websites?

13. What impacts do you think these folk-oriented websites have had on your participation in folk activities?

~~~
14. Do you use folk-oriented online discussion forums/lists?

15. How often ?

16. Which ones?

17. Do you contribute your own posts to these forums/lists?

18. What impact do you think these forums/lists have had on your participation in folk activities?

~~~
19. Do you use portable devices in the course of your folk activities?
    Laptop / Tablet / Digital sound recorder / Smartphone / Other

20. Briefly explain how you use them

21. What impacts do you think these devices have had on your participation in folk activities?

~~~
22. What particular software/applications do you use to help you in folk activities?

23. Briefly explain how you use them

24. What impacts do you think these software packages/applications have had on your participation in folk activities?

~~~
25. Do you share folk-related things that you have made yourself (e.g. transcriptions, audio/video recordings, photographs, etc.) digitally?

26. How often?

27. What type of things do you share, and how/where/why?

28. What impacts do you think the sharing of these materials has had on your participation in your folk activity?

~~~
29. Are the folk arts still "traditional" when digital media/technology is involved in their performance/creation?

30. Are there ways of using digital media or technology that you would consider inappropriate for folk activities?

31. Overall, do you think that digital media/technology has had a positive impact on the folk arts?

32. Are there any elements of your digital folk activities that you have not had a chance to tell us about, and which you think are interesting/important?

33. Has this survey caused you to think differently about the ways in which you use digital media/technology in relation to your folk activities? If so, how?

--------


04 Oct 16 - 03:09 PM (#3812739)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,Modette

Frankly, if any of my students had submitted this survey to me for approval, I'd have rejected it. It's imprecise, vague and repetitive. Worst of all, it doesn't define its terms. What on earth are the 'folk arts'?


04 Oct 16 - 03:38 PM (#3812743)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Mo the caller

It is vague which means you can interpret it in a way that suits you.
I don't know how it will be analysed, will give insights rather than statistics .... but who wants to be a statistic


04 Oct 16 - 03:42 PM (#3812746)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Steve Gardham

Found it easy to fill in. Just some of the questions could have been worded better but nobody's perfect. It didn't stump me.


04 Oct 16 - 03:48 PM (#3812749)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Steve Gardham

When I set out collecting folk songs in the 60s all I had was a cheap Phillips portable reel-to-reel and little idea how to go about it. Where would I go to collect songs in 2016? I would strongly recommend Mudcat. Some wonderful old stuff being added to threads constantly.

I became interested in the sources of the songs soon after I started collecting/recording so I travelled around the country visiting libraries and museums looking at printed sources and manuscripts. In 2016 much (sadly not all) of this is now online. Nuff said!


04 Oct 16 - 04:34 PM (#3812758)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,pauperback

"What on earth are the folk arts?"

It varies...

http://santafetravelers.com/photo-of-the-week/photo-of-the-week-david-bradley-okeeffe-after-whistler/


04 Oct 16 - 04:54 PM (#3812761)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Mr Red

Well that's 2 hours of my life I won't get back.
Gave them plenty to think about.
I think I have earned an hour blobbing in front of the TV.


04 Oct 16 - 05:25 PM (#3812774)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: leeneia

I filled it out so I could say how much traditional music is available on the Internet. And to give a nod of thanks to the people who do the work of keeping Mudcat, abcnotation.com and The Session on the web.


04 Oct 16 - 06:00 PM (#3812782)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: JHW

I had promised myself I'd never do another Survey Monkey because of the usual limited answer options.
This one is better as it asks mostly for written answers rather than ticked options.
But I still gave up at about Q13 as I seemed to be answering the same questions again.
As stated above in this thread you don't know where its going. Would be handy to be able to scroll the whole questionnaire at the start than be drip fed questions.


04 Oct 16 - 06:24 PM (#3812785)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Steve Gardham

Well you have that now thanks to Freddy.


04 Oct 16 - 06:42 PM (#3812787)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,.gargoyle

I began...and 80% through...it became obvious the survey had a UK bias.

Truly, "silly stuff".

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Even a govt funded, folk-study out of Liverpool regarding the world of whores has better "academic rigor" than this "clap-trap".

Show me the department, and advisor


04 Oct 16 - 06:45 PM (#3812788)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Tattie Bogle

Done it, but even without being overly long, it took me half an hour to complete, and there was some "as previously stated" to cover the apparent repetition of questions. Certainly 9-13 and 14-18 seem to be asking the same.
As fir 33, sorry but I've been changing continuously over several years: not goong to suddenly change my habits with one survey!
Yes, and I gave Mudcat due credit!


04 Oct 16 - 08:54 PM (#3812807)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

About the same time here. I sent it off as an email. The questions are more sensible than the choice of SurveyMonkey would suggest.

It occurs to me now that there was nothing about folk mailing lists. There is a REALLY MAJOR glaring issue with those whch ought to have triggered a few questions.


05 Oct 16 - 12:48 AM (#3812818)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Joe Offer

I thought everybody was being overly grouchy about the survey, and then I took it. I didn't like it, either. The survey was overly repetitive, and asked questions that just weren't interesting or of any seeming value.
Yes, I use digital folk music resources constantly. Online music research is one of the main things I do with my time. I was associate editor of a songbook with 1200 songs, prepared entirely on Google Docs and researched at Mudcat, Ballad Index, and Roud. I'm the music editor at Mudcat, and that's where I do my research. I listen to music on Spotify.
I find Facebook to be a poor medium for research because it's hard to find the information that was provided in the past - but Mudcat is an ideal tool for collaborative research of songs.
-Joe-


05 Oct 16 - 02:37 AM (#3812825)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Frey Visthaer

That survey was bloody confusing, yet fun.


05 Oct 16 - 02:39 AM (#3812827)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Frey Visthaer

Now that I've come to think of it, that wasn't a good survey; very confusing!


05 Oct 16 - 04:10 AM (#3812838)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Howard Jones

I agree, a confusing survey (I answered the question about 'websites' thinking of discussions forums including this one, only to find there was a separate question about them. And how do they define "social media"?)

I would have found it much easier to give meaningful answers if they had asked structured questions about the individual topics they are researching:

Personal Learning
Session Recording
Private Collecting
Online Discussion
Specialist Research
Technical Development
Public Organisations & Initiatives


05 Oct 16 - 05:22 AM (#3812850)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Dr. Lucy Wright

Dear all,

Many thanks to those who have already completed the survey, and apologies to everyone who found it confusing / difficult to fill in. I inherited the survey when I took on the role at Sheffield this summer, but will take into account all comments when considering how we might improve on it in the future.

It is perhaps worth saying that this survey forms only a small part of the Digital Folk project, which also includes extended fieldwork and interviews (I come from an ethnography background after all!). The aims of the survey are to 'take the temperature' of folk arts participation more broadly, and to identify key areas for more in-depth study. We really appreciate all contributions, and although the project has a nominal UK focus, we are keen to hear from others based elsewhere worldwide.

For anyone still considering whether or not to fill in the survey, please don't feel obliged to answer all questions if they do not seem relevant to you, or they have become too repetitive. If you skip ahead to the end of the survey, there is a text box for 'anything else' which can be used to summarise / tell us how we might improve our questions.

Thanks again for the constructive feedback,
Lucy


05 Oct 16 - 02:33 PM (#3812941)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: JHW

Another thought. Only the responses of those who take part will be collated. Obvious yes - but not a representative sample of folk society, only of those who DO use the www


05 Oct 16 - 03:45 PM (#3812949)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Steve Gardham

Nothing wrong with constructive criticism, but it isn't that long since I completed a similar survey for the BLSA. It might be worth contacting them to see what their survey results were.


05 Oct 16 - 05:53 PM (#3812962)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

It occurred to me that there may be a generational thing going on with the survey structure.

Mudcat, TheSession, BanjoHangout and their like are much older than general-purpose "social media". To a Mudcat old-stager, Facebook is the same sort of thing as Mudcat, only with a wider remit and different strengths and weaknesses. It doesn't make sense, for us, to think of them as requiring different sections of a questionnaire. But for somebody whose first exposure to any kind of computer-mediated interaction with their peers was through services like Twitter and Facebook, going to a dedicated music forum is odd behaviour that needs explanation.


05 Oct 16 - 07:56 PM (#3812983)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

It just occurred to me that there is a whole new aspect to digital technology and folk performance practice on the way... the Internet of Things. What if your instrument could report back to Martin, Yamaha or the Castelfidardo Mafia on what you were doing with it, as this manufacturer got their products to do?...

sex toys calling back home

Would we end up with fiddles being design-optimized and market-targeted for playing Ashokan Farewell?


06 Oct 16 - 10:35 AM (#3813079)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Dr. Lucy Wright

Thanks to everyone for their further thoughts.

Steve? BLSA = British Library Sound Archive? We'll definitely be in touch with them in the coming weeks. As I mentioned, this survey is only one of a range of methods we're using to explore the subject of 'digital folk', but it would certainly be useful to become more familiar with the work they've already done in this area.

Re. bias in advertising the survey online; that's an issue we're very aware of, and we are trying to ensure that we also contact people 'offline' to gain perspectives from those who prefer not to use online methods.

I love the idea of the 'smart' fiddles that will snitch on you to the manufacturer!


09 Oct 16 - 04:54 PM (#3813661)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST

refresh


10 Oct 16 - 05:10 PM (#3813768)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,Sol

1. Do you think filling out a survey is a waste of time unless you know what they are doing with the info?
2. What do you earn? (a) 0 - 100 pa, (b) $200 - $1,000,000 pa
3. If (b), please send me some of it?


10 Oct 16 - 08:15 PM (#3813817)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

If people would take the trouble to find out who Lucy is and what she does (Mr Google can introduce you) they might be a bit less grumpy.


10 Oct 16 - 08:25 PM (#3813821)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,Guest - curious

It seems you have changed your mind Jack.

Yes or no?


10 Oct 16 - 09:01 PM (#3813824)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Janie

From FreddyHeadey's post above where he copied information from their webpages: "What digital tools and resources do folk artists in England use?"

Dr. Wright, you might want to ask a moderator to edit your opening post to include that statement.

This is an international site, and not just limited to English folk artists. While a majority of posters are either the UK or North America, we have people from all around the world, and many of the folks from the UK are Scottish, Irish or Welsh, not English.   There are also many of us who would not be classified or considered folk artists in that we sing or play only recreationally. Unless you make clear what population your research desires to sample, and then extrapolate from, any conclusions you reach may not be all that reflective of the habits of English folk artists.

All the best,

Janie


11 Oct 16 - 03:34 AM (#3813851)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: GUEST,FloraG

I think the survey might be improved by targeting. Do bands use computers in a different way to folk club organisers etc.
Most of our barn dance booking come through personal recommendations and repeat bookings - so we have not needed to go down the digital path - which we felt could be time consuming. However, a band starting now might act differently.
FloraG


11 Oct 16 - 03:43 AM (#3813853)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Jack Campin

Living in Scotland, you just have to get used to the English not knowing where their country's borders are. They do learn, but getting polemical about it doesn't make the process any quicker.

It does make some difference to these questions. I use Kist o Riches/Tobar an Dualchais and the National Library of Scotland's online broadside archive fairly often; the Bodleian ballad archive less often, and the British Library Sound Archive not at all, unless somebody here links to an item in it.


11 Oct 16 - 04:43 AM (#3813860)
Subject: RE: Digital Folk survey. Please take part!
From: Mr Red

Call me an evangelist, but a PhD - expert in surveys or Folk music? Which type do we want here?

are we evangelical about Folk, or do we shoot the messenger (who has sufficient armour IMNSHO)?

My approach was "This is about Folk, now what permutations can I wrestle out of the what is Folk debate?" And proceeded in a IMNSHO mode to ally it to digits, confident that PhD's can intelligently cherry pick what they find relevant. And maybe open a few doors to less sexy aspects - like my Stroud Audio History Archive. Given what is there, there are nuggets that fit, if not all of it.

aaaaaaaaaand, for once I didn't try that old chestnut:
any finger-picking style is digital!