1. WHAT IS THIS FORM?
This form is called a Consent Form. It will give you information about the study so you can make an informed decision about participating in this research study.
2. WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE?
To participate, you should be at least 18 years of age and have an Android mobile phone and a Mac or Windows computer with a Chrome web browser.
3. WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS STUDY?
The purpose of our research study is to improve user privacy.
News recommendation is an extremely popular service. However, users often given up their privacy to receive the recommendation. Existing recommendation systems collect all user data in order to provide recommendations. In order to address the privacy concerns, we are researching systems that can provide recommendations by processing data locally on the user's laptop. No data is stored at the server. Our goal in this study is to design algorithms which can best utilize user's data for recommendations, but can still be performed on a low-end machine.
4. WHERE WILL THE STUDY TAKE PLACE AND FOR HOW LONG?
This is a completely offline study. We ask that you provide us feedback for 1 month.
5. WHAT WILL I BE ASKED TO DO?
If you agree to take part in this study, you will be asked to do the following:
1. Download and install the application on your mobile phone and on your personal computer.
2. Read and sign this consent form on the mobile application.
3. Provide your username. This can be any username. Also provide a password (which will not be transferred to us) to encrypt any data transfer between your phone and your laptop. Be sure to provide the same username and password on both your phone and your laptop.
4. Provide feedback to the recommendations
a. Recommendations pop up on your phone periodically.
b. Swipe right if you find the recommendation relevant, left if you dont.
6. CAN I STOP BEING IN THE STUDY?
If you agree to be in the study, but later change your mind, you may drop out at any time by uninstalling the application. In addition, you can erase all your data that was collected during the course of the study.
7. WILL YOU COLLECT ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION OR SENSITIVE INFORMATION DURING THE STUDY?
This study does not log any personally identifiable information including phone number, IMEI number, personal contacts, etc.
The software works on the following pieces of data on your mobile phone:
a. Browser history.
b. Facebook and Twitter feeds.
8. WILL I RECEIVE ANY PAYMENT FOR TAKING PART IN THE STUDY?
No there are no monetary benefits.
9. WHAT ARE MY RISKS?
We are taking several measures to ensure your risks are minimized:
a. No personally identifiable information is logged. This includes your phone number, IMEI number, IP address etc.
b. The researchers would not look at any of the user's data. Recommendations are done purely by our machine algorithm.
c. Our recommender system runs directly on the user's laptops which sends the recommendation to the user's mobile through our server. All data transfer between the laptop and the phone are encrypted.
d. You can stop participating in the study at any time.
e. The study server is password protected and only the study researchers can access this information.
f. We note that, by signing into Gmail and Google, Google will use your browsing history to generate news recommendation. We simply present this news recommendation to you to receive feedback.
10. WILL THE COLLECTED DATA BE RELEASED?
No, the collected data will not be released.
11. HOW LONG WILL THE STUDY LAST?
The study lasts 1 month. We will provide you detailed instructions on how to uninstall the tool from your phone and personal computer after the study is completed.
12. WHAT IF I HAVE QUESTIONS?
Take as long as you like before you make a decision. We will be happy to answer any questions you have about this study. If you have further questions about this project or if you have a research-related problem, please contact the researchers. Please note that confidentiality cannot be guaranteed for communication sent via e-mail.
13. SUBJECT STATEMENT OF VOLUNTARY CONSENT
I have read this form and decided that I will participate in the project described above. The general purposes and particulars of the study as well as possible hazards and inconveniences have been explained to my satisfaction. I understand that I can withdraw at any time. Yes No