ASAP. 2014 May;14(1):374-378
Social networking sites (SNSs) provide researchers with an unprecedented amount of user derived personal information. This wealth of information can be invaluable for research purposes. However, the privacy of the SNS user must be protected from both public and private researchers. New research capabilities raise new ethical concerns. We argue that past research regulation has largely been in reaction to questionable research practices, and therefore new innovations need to be regulated before SNS users’ privacy is irreparably compromised. It is the responsibility of the academic community to start this ethical discourse.