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Worth a look: An Introduction to Social Media for Scientists

At microBEnet one of our goals has been to experiment with various forms of social media and to see if / how it can be useful in general to the field of “microbiology of the Built Environment.”  For those interested in such things, as well as for anyone interesting in the interface between social media and science, I would recommend you check out this paper PLOS Biology: An Introduction to Social Media for Scientists. By Holly Bik (who is a post doc in my lab and who works on the microBEnet project) and Miriam Goldstein it has many useful bits of information, pointers, and advice.

SocialMedia

 

13 thoughts on “Worth a look: An Introduction to Social Media for Scientists

  1. Of course extensive use of the Internet is associated with a number of problems including security, privacy, and accuracy/reliability of information. The peer-review process provides the traditional “quality control/quality assurance” for scientific publication, effective or flawed as it may be. But blogs and other social media generally lack this type of protection. Anyone can post anything any time, (as I am doing now).

    On the security and privacy side, there is much still to be addressed, including numerous ethical issues around topics like child pornography, impersonation of others on web-dating sites, etc. One new web site provides tools to inform us about the consequences of our postings and participation in social media — https://myshadow.org/#. The site says: “Trace My Shadow

    If you use a computer, surf the Internet, text your friends via a mobile phone or shop online – you leave a digital shadow.
    You want to know how big it is?
    Find out with our interactive tools whenever you cast a shadow.”

    check it out….with their “Shadow Tracer’s Kit” at https://myshadow.org/shadow-tracers-kit.

    1. Well, that is quite a pessimistic point of view, but you are right in some sense. I view social media in much the same way I view any other tool. It can be used well, or poorly. The lack of peer review in some comments and posts certainly has it’s issues and risks. But the speed and dynamic nature has many benefits. So – yes we should be aware of the issues. But if we use it wisely, social media can be quite useful. Just like wine. Or microscopes. Or bicycles. Or ….

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