Understanding the social dynamics of Twitter, Facebook and Diabetes.co.uk and their value implications for patients and health researchers

Joanna Taylor, Claudia Pagliari, Miles Osborne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Health and wellness are dominant societal concerns, which is
reflected in their presence on Social Media. People with diabetes use a
range of Social Media to share information, build knowledge and seek
peer support, but surprisingly little is known about how this behaviour
varies across platforms. We drew data from a 10 day period in September
2014 from Twitter, Facebook and the Diabetes.co.uk discussion forum and
classified these according to their informational and social properties,
using Bales Interaction Process Analysis (IPA). Contrary to the
generalisations made in previous research, Twitter is chiefly used for
information dissemination, whilst Facebook and Diabetes.co.uk are also
used for social interaction and peer support. These differences exist due to
the structure of these platforms, including the potential for threaded
discussions, the specificity of the user base and the presence of a
moderator, each of which influence the nature of member interactions.
Our novel findings contribute new insight about the social function of
different Social Media in healthcare and the relative value of these Social
Media as sources of data for health research, tools for health promotion
and intervention, as well as forums for community and patient
engagement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-78
Number of pages5
JournalGLOBAL HEALTH: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Global Health Challenges
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2015

Keywords

  • eHealth
  • Social Media
  • Diabetes
  • Public Health
  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Understanding the social dynamics of Twitter, Facebook and Diabetes.co.uk and their value implications for patients and health researchers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this