A Note to Readers

In the last few weeks, regular readers may have noticed some infusion of personal history into this blog. I have my reasons for that, but I have decided to shift back to a more ‘non-personal’ focus. Oh, the humor and edginess will be here. The goal, after all, is to produce content related to healthcare and technology that isn’t the same-old-same old.

You will, however, continue to see content that aims to get readers to think. In a Twitter world, thinking is losing its place.

Confession (of a professional kind): I’ve been concerned with the direction that today’s technologies – social media in particular – are taking us. This is a time when ideologies around technologies begin to form.

And it’s the emerging ideologies concerning Healthcare and Social Media that are giving me pause.

Why? Because I feel that we’re not taking enough alone-time to step back and critically think about what all this technology deeply means.

I’m no Luddite – not by any means.

I am, nonetheless, very concerned that we may be building a world we’ll one day regret.

And so I appeal to fellow Healthcare professionals and bloggers and communicators: let’s not take too much of the Kool Aid that the people who first talked about social media have pushed.

I know Healthcare is late to the conversation. I once hoped that was a good thing because I thought we’d start afresh. But that didn’t happen. Instead, many of the discussions have been heavily influenced by the Internet Famous bloggers who propounded their guesses about how social media “works”.

So what’s started to happen is a replication of the tiring social media echo chamber that started years ago. Once the unvetted claims of ideas that sound right lock-in, it’s hard to find the key to do any unlocking.

We can do better.

It’s not too late.

We care about health, not pet ideas that go viral just because they’re loud and popular and Retweeted without any thought.

We’re scientists, not mystics.

Therefore, it’s my hope that the material here continues to serve as a way for those who truly want to figure out how the 21st Century is affecting our health and its provision.

I’ve been doing my best to figure it out myself, but I need your help.

We need each other.

We need diverse minds reasoning together who have the courage to question their own assumptions and honestly look at how these media are affecting our lives.

If we don’t want to question the dark side of social media, we aren’t passionate about it. And we’re also irresponsible, because a new generation is coming of age – and the world we create (or fail to create) falls on them to bear.

So expect less personal history from me. I’ve goten what I needed to get out of my system (that’s a lie, but I’ll still keep that stuff off this blog and over here if you care).

Do, however, expect a different perspective – one with touches of insight, hope, anger, concern, pragmatism, depth and laughter. If you’re not comfortable with that, my sincere apologies for taking your time.

But I’m not here to comfort. I’m here to question, to care and to discover with ¬†you.

@PhilBaumann@HealthIsSocialNewsletter

484-362-0451

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