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Activity Number: 661
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Thursday, August 4, 2016 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Survey Research Methods Section
Abstract #320442
Title: Motivated Misreporting in Web Panels
Author(s): Ruben Bach* and Stephanie Eckman
Companies: Institute for Employment Research and RTI International
Keywords: misreporting ; panel conditioning ; filter questions ; web panels

Previous studies of misreporting to filter questions have shown that asking filter questions in different formats results in different levels of misreporting. While respondents in a grouped format are asked follow-up questions only after multiple filters have been administered, respondents in an interleafed format are asked follow-up questions immediately after each filter. The common interpretation of this finding is that respondents surveyed in the interleafed format learn to say "no" to the filter questions in order to shorten the interview. However, so far, no study has examined whether misreporting to filter questions worsens over time as respondents may remember the structure of the interview when being surveyed for the second time. We conducted an experiment using filter questions in two consecutive waves of a monthly online panel, which allows us to study how misreporting to filter questions changes over time. While we replicate previous findings on the format effect, we find no support for the hypothesis that respondents reporting behavior gets worse over time. Our findings add to the literature on web panels, panel conditioning and motivated misreporting.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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