Your Health vs. Social Media

image by Miss Chicken via Flickr

(…) I argue constantly that if people gave up a little privacy it would likely make them and the rest of us a lot healthier. (…)

    I understand that it means changing one of the most important part of our privacy perception – giving up and publishing our health’s status. I get it, I know that there can be something good about this – like saving life, getting rid off the rush quicker and maybe cheaper – because some pharma company/doctor/on-line friend/etc. can suggest some medicine we may use or information about someone (who?) may help us, providing us with important health updates, etc. I would like to focus on another aspect of that issue – giving up the last frontier of our privacy, giving up/sharing our health information.
    ok,ok….when you look at this issue, we are already sharing some of that: Facebook checking-in to medical places (dentist, hospital, pharmacy, etc.) or updating our Facebook or Twitter status by posting comments such as: “I’m sick today, that’s my 5th cold this year”. And I think that this is just the beginning. So what’s next? What we will do next?:
  • how many health related information are we willing to share via social media?
  • who wants to get to those information?
  • what 3rd parties would like to do with that kind of knowledge about our health?
    I think that if there is more information about our health, there will be someone (individual or organization) willing to interact and do something (bad or good) with that information – wow, that doesn’t sound good.

image by 28misguidedsouls' photos via Getty Images

Just think about big pharmaceutical industry, it’s big, has a great budget for marketing research, wants to get to as much as possible information about our health. And what about insurance industry? same thing.

    What do you think about that?
    How many information are you already giving up via social media?

10 thoughts on “Your Health vs. Social Media

  1. Interesting! Not so sure about sharing all health information. What about people who are HIV+ or have any number of problems that they might not want the world to know. I guess it just *might* get to the point where we have no privacy. We asked for it and we’re getting it!

    1. Thank you Martha for your comment. Exactly, I agree with you. It’s just the thing that we are sharing (maybe) too much information. And information about our health is very delicate matter.
      regarding getting to the point where we have no privacy – I think we are already there 😉

  2. Hi, Klaudia. I didn’t get a chance to read the Jonathan Richman post, so I apologize if this point was covered there: why can’t health information just be shared in an anonymous way? I understand the need to comply with HIPAA and in general, I believe that it’s good to keep an individual’s specific health issues out of the public eye. However, why can it not be shared within the medical community, particularly if it’s in an aggregated, anonymized way? Unless I’m mistaken, this already happens quite extensively, in various studies that take place. Thus, what’s the incremental value to the medical community of having one individual’s medical info shared publicly? I’m not following the logic. I’ll read the Richman post when I get a chance. Paul

    1. Hi Paul, thank you so much for your comment.
      I was wondering how we can share health information in anonymous way? It’s always a risk when the data like this is shared. We never know who/how and for what might use that data. Of course I would like to see that there are only good people/companies around us but it’s not always the case, so I think it’s better to protect or at least be aware of what can happen to it.
      I understand your point of view, that medical community/etc. based on that data but here I’m thinking about sharing via social media? and that’s far away from anonymity.

  3. Hi Klaudia, I know the new Facebook profiles have the boxes that makes it easier to share medical information but no one has to do it, people chose to put the information out there. It is like you say to Martha, maybe we are sharing too much information, me included : )

    1. Thank you so much for the comment Karla. Yes, Timeline is offering more options (additional icons) so it’s easier to share information. And I guess having all that information “flying” around Facebook is not left alone 😉 Based on that information FB can do a lot of things (marketing department is working very hard I guess).
      I agree that we are not forced (yet) to share all that information but just think how much we already giving/sharing…a looot.

  4. People should be reading Jonathan Richman on a regular basis, just saying. 🙂

    I like that we now have options for sharing things such as our health information with not only our friends but with others outside our social circle on platforms like Twitter. Privacy is always a concern but it’s all still very much under our control, really.

    Nice post, Klaudia


    Jason Boies
    Radian6 Community Engagement Team

    1. Hi Jason, thank you for your comment and welcome Radian6 team member 🙂
      I agree that thanks to social media we have those options but still I think it’s good to be very very careful because all that info “flying” around the internet without our supervision – that’s not good.
      I’m not that sure that privacy on-line is very much under our control 😉

  5. I agree, I always tell people to occasionally Google yourself. You might be surprised what is out there. I just meant that we still have a great deal of control over how much we’re willing to personally share about ourselves in our tweets, our FB Timeline, our Linkedin Profile etc.

    Always think hard about what you’re putting out there before you press send, I guess that’s a good take away. 😛


    Jason B

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s