The Field Behind the Screen

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Citation: Robert V. Kozinets (2002) The Field Behind the Screen. Journa of Marketing Research (Volume 39) (RSS)
Internet Archive Scholar (search for fulltext): The Field Behind the Screen
Tagged: Marketing (RSS)


The author develops “netnography” as an online marketing research technique for providing consumer insight. “Netnography” is ethnography adapted to the study of online communities. As a method, “netnography” is faster, simpler, and less expensive than traditional ethnography, and more naturalistic and unobtrusive than focus groups or interviews. It provides information on the symbolism, meanings, and consumption patterns of online consumer groups. The author provides guidelines that acknowledge the online environment, respect the inherent flexibility and openness of ethnography, and provide rigor and ethics in the conduct of marketing research. As an illustrative example, the author provides a netnography of an online coffee newsgroup and discusses its marketing implications.