- Announcing: War Stories
- Steve’s War Story: It’s All Going To Burn
- Tamara’s War Story: What the Hell? Don’t you knock?
- Tell Us Your War Story
- Vanessa’s War Story: DDoSed in Vegas
- Dan’s War Story: Focus, no matter what!
- Priya’s War Story: Taking empathy to a whole new level
- Tom’s War Story: Go with the flow
- Mary Ann’s War Story: Be Prepared
- Leo’s War Story: No, We Really Meant the User
- Nicolas’ War Story: Do you want me to act?
- Diane’s War Story: Interrupted Interview
- Kelly’s War Story: Pictures are language independent
- Susan’s War Story: The trust dance
- Gavin’s War Story: It’s 4:00 a.m., Do You Know Where Your Ethnographer Is?
- Dan’s War Story: Shanghai Surprise
- Fumiko’s War Story: Goodbye cruel world
- Greg’s War Story: Taking notes, getting detained (sort of)
- Jon’s War Story: Beware of Trap Doors
- George’s War Story: Skyfall (or A View to A Kill)
- Lisa’s War Story: When Rapport Goes Too Far
- Sean’s War Story: Pockets full of cash
- Francoise’s War Story: Black glances cast our way
- Brandon’s War Story – CATastrophe
- Greg’s War Story: Biting off more than I can chew
- Michael’s War Story: The glass is more than half full
- Raffaella’s War Story: Learning to deal with expectations
- Greg’s War Story: Culture shock
- Elaine’s War Story: I thought my client was going to die
- Dennis’s War Story: Negotiating between sympathy and empathy
- Debbie’s War Story: Sometimes Ignorance is Bliss
- Carla’s War Story: A dirty diaper sitting in the mud
- Apala’s War Story: Whose side is the researcher on?
- Jaimes and Aico’s War Story: Sumimasen!
- Elysa’s War Story: Keep The Swiffer On Your Right
- Sharon’s War Story: Broken Windows Theory
- David’s War Story: Footloose
- David’s War Story: Suit yourselves
- Prasad’s War Story: Skin in the game
- Daria’s War Story: Human Thresholds
- Jen’s War Story: Trust your gut, it can save your life!
- Ryan’s War Story: Enthusiasticus Interruptus
- Valerie’s War Story: Rank order
- Rachel’s War Story: Subject Matter May Be Inappropriate
- Cordy’s War Story: A Crisis of Credibility
- Marta’s War Story: On confronting judgement
- Whitney’s War Story: Stories of War
- Kavita’s War Story: Managing money, oh joy!
- Ilona’s War Story: First Stop the Bleeding!
- Elaine’s War Story: They call me Mister
- Tom’s War Story: House Rules
- Alicia’s War Story: Don’t hate on a tinkler
- Lena’s War Story: The Researcher and the Banana Thief
- Michael’s War Story: All About Face (Sichuan Adventures)
Here’s Kelly Braun, Senior Director, User Insights and Analytics at Walmart.com with a story about shooting fieldwork video and inadvertently getting the money shot.
At eBay we did a lot of field visits. We were always over-prepared with checklists, allergy meds, extra batteries, and everything else we could think of for the unexpected.
For this particular study we were interviewing people who had bought large equipment on eBay. This visit was to a store that had purchased a large copy machine (a giant Xerox machine that had been used by a big corporations). This video store specialized in Chinese language videos.
I perused the movies as we got set up. Some were American movies that I recognized by the pictures even though the titles were in Chinese. Others were films made specifically for the Chinese-speaking audience.
We interviewed the owner and he told us about the amazing deal he got on the machine and when we asked if we could see it he said “Sure, it’s in the back.” No problem, we had extension cords for the video camera.
I took the camera off the tripod and followed the store owner and my co-researcher into the tiny back office. I couldn’t really get a good shot of the Xerox machine from the door so I went inside and around the machine to get a better angle. At this point the owner says “Oh, I forgot. This is where the porn videos are…but don’t worry – they are all in Chinese”.
I look up and the side of the room I was now facing with my video camera rolling was filled with porn – all with Chinese titles, but let’s just say it really didn’t matter that the titles were in Chinese because…well, a picture is worth a thousand words regardless of the language!
My co-researcher just soldiered on asking questions and all I could think of was “Wow am I supposed to film this guy with all the frolicking nakedness on the video covers behind him?”
Lesson learned: Make sure you know how to override the auto-focus on your camera!