I hear occasionally of medical schools that prohibit students from blogging or using tools like Twitter. But those trying to legislate the conversation don’t realize how fragmented our channels of dialog have become.
And the rules that are created never really make sense.
Blogging is prohibited but long comments are fine. Twitter is verboten while Instagram, Path, Pinterest, Google+ are seem to fall quietly under the wire. Nervous admins seem to forget about Foursquare and its capacity for dialog. What if a student wants to share their opinion of the latest James Patterson novel on Goodreads? And if blogging and Twitter are the problem, then what about something like Tumblr? It’s somewhere between a microblog and a blog. I’ve yet to see a policy on Snapchat.
Inconsistent, byzantine rules that are out of touch with the way the world connects only work to make leaders look painfully disconnected.
We can’t stop the conversation. Instead we should be training doctors in the pros and cons of public dialog, irrespective of platform.