Digital Disruption in Pharma
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More Scientists Need to Use Social Media to Counteract Influence of Celebrities

More Scientists Need to Use Social Media to Counteract Influence of Celebrities | Digital Disruption in Pharma |

M. Galetti and R. Costa-Pereira write that “communicating with the public through social media is time-consuming, and most scientists are not trained for it” and that “social media influencers…can help to spread important messages of science.” Celebrities have an undeniable power over the public, especially when it comes to social media. However, leveraging the online influence of a rock star, model, or actress to shift the public's interest in science is dangerous. What social media need is more scientists—not celebrity influencers.


There are countless examples of what can go wrong when celebrities and science mix. Kim Kardashian has provided misleading information about the morning sickness medication Diclegis on her social media accounts. The FDA had to step in to ensure the medication's safety information was correctly listed in her posts ( read “Kim Kardashian's Diclegis Instagram Post Raises Issues of Transparency, Drug Safety, and Learning from History”). Gwyneth Paltrow is frequently under fire for promoting pseudoscience on her lifestyle website, Goop. Robert De Niro and Jenny McCarthy believe that vaccinations are dangerous.


What do these cases have in common? None of these celebrities have the expertise or background to have informed opinions about the topics they are discussing or products they are pushing.


The dangers and risks associated with celebrities speaking out about science issues on social media are high. These ill-informed discourses can push science policy and the public's understanding of science in the wrong direction through oversimplification and hype.


Social media need more practicing scientists to learn how to properly engage online and to then spread accurate, informative, scientific messages.


Further Reading:

“Share Your Science: Blogging for Magazines, Newspapers and More”;

Via nicoleta susanu
Presenters's curator insight, October 10, 10:29 AM

M. Galetti y R. Costa-Pereira hacen una breve pero importante reflexión sobre el uso de las redes sociales. Inundadas por la influencia de gente famosa, podemos ser fácilmente engañados o conducidos por caminos que la ciencia ha desmentido hace tiempo. En el artículo se aportan varios ejemplos sobre esto y se hace especial hincapié en la importancia de la difusión y presencia por parte de los profesionales (aunque hace especial referencia a los científicos se puede aplicar a cualquier campo) en las redes sociales.

Pedro Ribeiro's curator insight, October 10, 3:42 PM
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EntreCulturas's comment, October 14, 12:37 PM
Una opinion muy interesante sobre la importancia de credibilidad en las redes sociales. La información que es compartida por celebridades, especialmente los que tienen muchos seguidores, en las redes sociales tiene un gran impacto especialmente por su capacidad de llamar la atención de muchos usuarios al instante. Recientemente en los Estados Unidos hay mas casos de noticias falsas y celebridades también han sido víctimas de estas noticias. Responsabilidad en las redes sociales es un tema importante, y mas cuando las celebridades manejan tanta influencia en estas plataformas. Debería de ver mas discuciones sobre este tema.
Digital Disruption in Pharma
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