Article

Behavior Research Methods

, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 322-327

First online:

The high-hurdle technique put to the test: Failure to find evidence that increasing loading times enhances data quality in Web-based studies

  • Anja S. GöritzAffiliated withOrganizational and Social Psychology, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg Email author 
  • , Stefan StiegerAffiliated withMedical University of Vienna

Abstract

Two Web-based experiments examined the usefulness of artificially delaying the loading of the first page of the study. The idea pursued in this technique is to filter out less-motivated respondents through a higher respondent burden in the form of waiting time. Participants who remain in the study despite having had to wait for the first page of the study to appear on the screen are expected to be more highly motivated, and thus to produce data of higher quality. In both experiments, as expected, the longer the loading time, the lower the likelihood of people responding to the study. However, contrary to expectation, the dropout rate and quality of data were independent of the loading time. Therefore, artificially delaying the loading of the first page of the study is counterproductive.