Tuesday, August 14, 2012
IDWeek and Social Media
Note: This isn't meant to offend - I post this because I genuinely want to see this meeting succeed and worry that we are missing tremendous opportunities to advance our cause(s)
For the past year, I've been suggesting through discussions and emails that SHEA and IDWeek could utilize social media to engage scientists and the public. I've even written about the importance of marketing your science earlier this year. So far, nothing has happened. For example, I just reviewed the number of twitter followers of SHEA (171) and IDWeek (57). If you look at APIC (1,163 followers) + AJIC (362), ASM (2,816) and IDSA (1,749) they do much better. That is, someone seems to care about social media...
How can a huge meeting with expected attendance of >5,000 have only 57 followers, only follow 5 "people" and have 28 total tweets (close to zero about science)? It's because they don't take it seriously. If I had submitted an abstract and it was selected as a poster or podium presentation, I would want the meeting to advertise my science to a huge group of attendees and science journalists, but IDWeek has been close to useless on that front so far. There have been numerous times that authors, attendees and our blog have mentioned IDWeek in a tweet or blog post and there have been almost zero retweets, zero follows and zero interaction. If the meeting is not engaged in the science and its promotion, why should I submit my science to IDWeek? What do I get out of it?
We have 8 weeks or so to the meeting - there's still some time, but it's running out. Let's step it up IDWeek.