PHILADELPHIA—A session on social media in rheumatology at ACR Convergence 2022 focused on how to use social media to promote one’s work and collaborate on international research projects, as well as the use of podcasts in educating rheumatologists.
Engaging at Conferences
Jean Liew, MD, MS, assistant professor of medicine in the Section of Rheumatology at Boston University, discussed means of engaging with social media at conferences during the first half of the session.
The first step is to determine the conference hashtag being used on social media platforms, such as #ACR22 for ACR Convergence 2022. Dr. Liew explained how the use of hashtags on social media platforms enables content to be more easily searchable, so others can find your posts.
“Social media can be used to amplify sessions and speakers of interest as well as colleagues,” Dr. Liew said. Posts that cover the meeting, such as through tweetorials on Twitter summarizing talks of interest, enable others to virtually access meeting content.
Promoting Your Work
Dr. Liew suggests creating social media accounts, such as on Twitter, for one’s research group or division. She showed examples of Twitter posts from rheumatology divisions at Boston University/Boston Medical Center and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, highlighting awards and abstracts that were being presented at ACR Convergence 2022.
“This is a way to highlight and amplify research publications and achievements of members of your research group and people in your division,” Dr. Liew said, and can be an effective way to promote research and divisions at national conferences.
Dr. Liew also reviewed other ways of creating educational content on social media, including examples of infographics and visual abstracts to provide education on rheumatology topics or promote research studies. Tweetorials are series of posts that can be used to cover a talk at a conference or provide an explanation of one’s own recently published research article.
She mentioned that the use of social media is not limited to intellectual discussions or educational content, describing the virtual #ACRDonutChallenge during ACR Convergence 2020, where Twitter was filled with posts of rheumatologists and rheumatology professionals enjoying donuts in their home cities, inspired by the previous in-person donut wall at the 2019 ACR annual meeting.
The COVID-19 Global Rheumatology Alliance (GRA) is a novel grassroots organization that arose during the pandemic. Researchers, clinicians, patients and patient representatives collected evidence on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on patients with rheumatic disease.