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Actual and potential use of Google Street View for studying tobacco issues: a brief review
  1. Nick Wilson1,
  2. Amber L Pearson1,2,
  3. George Thomson1,
  4. Richard Edwards1
  1. 1Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand
  2. 2Department of Geography, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Nick Wilson, Department of Public Health, University of Otago, PO Box 7343 Wellington South, Wellington 6242, New Zealand ; nick.wilson{at}otago.ac.nz

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Background

Google Street View (GSV) is an increasingly used data collection method for objectively measuring observable features of the environment as detailed in a recent review.1 But as its overall potential for studying tobacco control-related issues to date has never been considered, we aimed to perform a brief review of this potential.

Methods

Searches were conducted using PubMed for articles using the term ‘Google Street View’ (to January 2017). From these articles, additional ones involving GSV were identified in bibliographies. Articles were excluded from further analysis if they focused on the non-human environment (n=3 excluded, ie, bird nests, insects with silk nests and invasive plants) or if they did not cover any of the following: signage/advertising, retail outlets/stores or bars/pubs, or tobacco content (n=15 excluded).

Results

We identified 23 relevant Medline-indexed studies relating to GSV and one review. A total of four tobacco-related issues were specifically covered in this …

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