even if you do not take the survery, these survey questions have some implications

Polite Request:

سلام عليكم

Forgive me for intruding, but I am in a class on contemporary Islamic culture at BYU and am doing a research project on Islamic courtship rituals, with my project placing special emphasis upon such rituals in the Gulf States. If there are a few individuals from the Gulf States (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, Oman) who could complete a short questionnaire at the link pasted below, I would be very grateful. Thank you for your willingness to help.
Time: Saturday March 5, 2011 at 7:25 pm

Comment to request: You are not an intrusion. I have a sense that VERY few would respond to this survey.  (Thanks to the likes of 9/11 and its consequences.) However, i do wish you well with your project. Do let us know what insights you have attained as a result of your project.

In general, i would also appreciate any comments you or anyone else would share on Islam/Muslim society.

Keep up any and/or all good work(s) you do.

3 responses to “even if you do not take the survery, these survey questions have some implications

  1. worried mother

    Peace be with you BYU student, I want to ask you this survey you want is obviously part of a homework assignment paper for your class and having people take it online on survey monkey is easier for you to gather the data, however, as Imam indicated, Muslims are hesitant to put anything with their information on a computer or on paper. It is my suggestion that you request our President, if you can have a manual paper survey done by people of the countries you are requesting and obviously allow them not to disclose their names, or personal information and let it be anonymous. I also, having helped BYU students in the past and know some of the professors at BYU, think that you will have to do a little more work then do a survey monkey route and come down in person to our mosque to get this information manually. The professors I know usually have an interaction component of their assignments. I am also terribly concerned with your phrase “there will be implications if the survey is not answered”. What do you mean, are you trying to tell us that you will do your paper without current and accurate data from live people and maybe thus, give a wrong picture of our Muslims? or are you talking about having some real policy changes for Muslims at BYU as a result of your paper? Honestly, I find your way of asking for our help a bit forceful, and a bit threatening. It is my opinion, I am entitled to express it and I also want to request to the Imam not to have links going out from our islamic site to anyone else’s site for a survey or anything else because we do not know who you are. Our Islamic website shouls not be a site for others to do things from; it is an Islamic site for questions to the Imam, not a tool for students to do their papers, otherwise, the Imam will be overburdened with many requests through this website and frankly, I am not interested in that. This is not a website only coming out to students, and as a worried mother I would be worried for my children to jump out of this site to another unknown. Imam, by putting this survey on, you are endorsing its security for our children. I humbly request you remove it for lack of information of who and where this survey is coming from and safety of identity, vulnerability, etc. of our children and adults.
    Allah (swt)/God bless, no offense, just being safe.
    Jazakullah Khair

  2. Gary XXXXXXX (site removed last name)

    Mrs. Jazakullah,
    I am sorry for any misunderstanding. I did not write the tag line “even if you do not take the survey, these survey questions have some implications.” Whoever reviews post submissions and subsequently publishes them (the Imam?) must have written that, and I am sure he meant no harm by it. As for your concerns about research, we do prefer personal interaction, and my research team has been engaging in personal interviews. However, we also wanted to utilize a service that would allow people to remain anonymous; this is to avoid something that sociologists/political scientists call the “Hawthorne effect”. The Hawthorne effect refers to how people oftentimes will respond differently to questions/circumstances based upon their perceived anonymity or lack thereof. Please do not misinterpret such efforts on our part as being motivated by fear/suspicion of the Muslim community; we possess nothing of the sort and are simply trying to control for a phenomena that typically affects all humans, regardless of cultural or religious background. Along these lines, thank you for your suggestion regarding manual surveys; our team may examine that possibility. I also have no intention of monopolizing the imam’s time and depriving Muslim youth/adults of his attention. Again, forgive me for any concern/discomfort I may have caused you; rest assured that I carry nothing but the utmost respect for the Utah Islamic community.

  3. Dear Sir,
    *In due respect, none of what you have said offended me or the majority of our community. You have been very polite and diplomatic in the above response as well. As for the comment posted by ‘worried mother’ — be it an intentional comment with deeper meaning from ‘worried mother’ or a comment sent due to an error in judgment, to me it remains as a mere comment, not a s a representation of this site or the official views of the Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake.
    *Due to international/national events, (some? many?) Muslims seem to be sensitive (and skeptical) regarding surveys. If you tend to be LDS, you too may understand the motivation for such behavior.
    *Your survey has been welcome on our site. I liked reading it. As I recall, few others did too. Sadly, many did not take it due to fear of misrepresentation. The fear issue is not from you, it is from events in general that face Muslims. The title was an attempt to get you the most hits possible. For when the survey was read, it seemed more than fine to us. By ‘implications’ i mean: outcome — not harsh consequences or threat as viewed by ‘worried mother.’ After-all, to me, surveys are linked to possible implications. (whew!)
    *My time has not been monopolized by you or any of our other guests. I always welcome interest towards Islam.
    *People that place comments do so on their behalf. Do not take anything personal. They are NOT representing me. Yes, they may have good intentions to be protective of me, this is a different matter altogether.
    *The above has not occurred in vain, it gives you a first hand experience as to the ‘psycho/social state’ Muslims are in due to events that surround them. Maybe all this can help your project more than you expected. For us Muslims, nothing ever happens in vain.
    *Wishing you the very best in all your projects, do keep us posted. Now you really have us curious.