Is it just me or is the pharmacy presence on Twitter growing?

My daughter had a three-day volleyball tournament over the weekend. While there’s a lot of action during these tournaments, there’s also some downtime. I usually pass the downtime by reading through my social media streams. I have a system that typically goes something like this: Twitter –> Google+ –> Facebook –> LinkedIn –> RSS-feed-reader-of-the-week –> start over.

This weekend I found myself clicking on, and reading, a lot more pharmacy related Tweets than usual.
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Changes to Twitter finally hit home

I’ve read quite a bit lately about all the changes to Twitter. The incessant complaining, the non-stop blood-clot cryin’, the “Twitter has gone too far” rhetoric, and so on. Whatever Twitter has done has irritated a lot of people, but doesn’t seem to have hurt them much, if at all. I don’t really care one way or the other. I use the native Twitter client on my Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Samsung Tab 7.0 Plus; seems to work just fine.  No problems noted. I use the Silver Bird add on for Google Chrome to handle my Tweeting when I’m online, and I use Buffer when I’m inside Google Reader. Haven’t seen any problems there either.

I’ve been using a service called IFTTT – awesome tool by the way – to send all my Tweets directly to an Evernote Notebook where they’re archived for all eternity, or until something happens to the cloud. So each time I compose a new Tweet it’s automatically captured and appended to my “IFTTT Twitter” Notebook in Evernote. It’s great.

Unfortunately it looks like that’s all about to come to an end. I received the following email yesterday:

It’s a real bummer. It won’t stop me from using Twitter, but it’s still a bit frustrating that something so incredibly effective at automating the archiving of my Tweets is being shut down.

Trolling cyberspace for relevant information

Ours is an age of information. It comes at us from all directions; unrelenting and ever present. Finding information is no longer a problem, figuring out what to do with it and how to handle the never ending stream of information is.

Cyberspace, i.e. the internet is full of information. It’s available via weblogs, online journals, social media, through professional organizations, via webinars and so on. The problem is that the information has no meaningful structure, making it difficult to sift through. What’s worse is trying to figure out what information is reliable and what information isn’t.

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Personal vesus professional social media, where’s the line for you?

Earlier this week @ASHPOfficial tweeted “Where should pharmacists draw the line at social networking? Protect your professional reputation and get tips for safety and privacy in the Summer issue of ASHP InterSections.”  The tweet included a link that took me to Facebook where I found another link to an article in ASHP Intersections Summer 2010 about pharmacy and social media; nothing unusual about that. I’ve read the article before and it contains some pretty good information. With that said, I did find it odd that ASHP was pointing pharmacists toward Facebook to retrieve professional information. It got me thinking about Facebook and where the professional line-in-the-sand between professional and personal social media should be drawn for pharmacists.
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“What’d I miss?” – Week of November 5th

As usual there were a lot of things that happened during the week, and not all of it was pharmacy or technology related. Here’s a quick look at some of the stuff I found interesting.
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Twitter vs. RSS Reader … who cares.

I’ve been following an interesting debate about the benefits of Twitter versus RSS readers like Google Reader. The debate started with a question posed by Robert Scoble on friendfeed and spilled over into several blogs; siliconANGLE, louisgray.com, Scobleizer and Newsome.Org.

I love reading stuff like this because you can see the passion that everyone has for their little corner of the technology world. It’s even more interesting when you consider that it’s a completely personal choice. Boxers or briefs, who gives a crap as long as you’re comfortable.
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“What’d I miss?” – Week of October 25th

As usual there were a lot of things that happened during the week, and not all of it was pharmacy or technology related. Here’s a quick look at some of the stuff I found interesting.
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All roads lead to Rome, err….I mean Twitter.

internet_overloadUntil the next big thing comes along Twitter is king. That’s why I found this Tweet from Robert Scoble so interesting. The Tweet itself simply let me to a blog article written by Louis Gray. The blog discusses two distinctly different approaches to sharing information; Louis Gray’s approach versus Robert Scoble.

Louis utilizes Google Reader to collect and sort various RSS feeds. Any story, blog, article, etc. that he finds interesting get pushed to Twitter via the share feature in Google Reader (see the graphical representation at Louis’ site).

In the other corner you have Robert “using not RSS, but Twitter, to share the best of the technology Web as it streams on his screen.” Robert appears to be making extensive use of his Twitter Favorites.
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Yes, another article on Twitter and healthcare

TELEMEDICINE and e-Health (July/August 2009):  “Although as a “social entertainment” Twitter is remarkably successful—it’s a wonderful time-waster—the more significant question, especially as it pertains to telemedicine and e-health, is: What good is it? Joseph C. Kvedar, M.D., Director of the Center for connected Health (Partners Healthcare System, Boston, MA), says that one way to look at Twitter is as a method of mass communication. “It’s a bit like having a group of people you can instantly send a blast fax or blast e-mail or a blast communication to because it’s real-time and because it was designed for mobility. Instead of being like texting my daughter, I might now text 30 people or 50 or 100 people, whatever the number is who are following you.” Several healthcare practitioners and organizations are putting Twitter to use.” – I have to admit, I’ve made contact with more interesting and intelligent people in five months of “Tweeting” then in my previous 12 year career as a pharmacist. That’s certainly important to me.

Keeping up while on the information superhighway

Web 2.0 has certainly created an information revolution. I used to rely solely on journal articles to keep me up to date. Now I rely on an internet connection. Unfortunately, this creates a situation where information arrives faster than I can digest it, and if you’re not careful you can drown in the excess and end up not learning a thing.
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