I have spent so much effort trying to recruit people, but the “not allowed to approach people directly” directive I was given by ethics basically means I am allowed to do the study so long as I don’t ask anyone to sign up? I’m just firing off impersonal emails to people knowing they won’t respond. It’s very disheartening, and I keep on having to remind myself that I’m not being slack or naive in my attempts to contact people. I do know how to ask for things in such a way that I get better uptake - which helps me remember why approaching people is deemed coercive and therefore forbidden.
I don’t think this is unethical research, and if I’m not allowed to ask people to participate what is the point?
I am very sick of shouting ineffectually at the ether.