NEW YORK NURSE: September 2010
by Erin Silk
Whether you “tweet,” blog, or share pictures of your family online, it’s hard not to notice social media’s impact on how many of us communicate today. Multiple outlets for “social networking” are being used by millions to advertise, reconnect and share the activities and interests of our everyday lives.
One popular social networking site is Facebook, an online community with the mission of giving “people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.” According to the organization’s statistics, more than 500 million people are active Facebook users and half of them log on every day.
NYSNA created a Facebook page in August 2009 to help keep members current on association business and connected to the nursing community. The NYSNA Facebook page has proven to be a popular location for members to receive association updates and share information with colleagues. “Fans” of NYSNA’s Facebook page are NYSNA members, as well as nurses from around the world who have opted to receive feeds regarding the latest nurse practice alerts, association campaign efforts, legislative alerts and much more. NYSNA members who are on Facebook can learn in an instant where to attend a rally or a picket, or how to sign up for a continuing nursing education program offered by NYSNA.
“I welcome the information from NYSNA and enjoy sharing it with other nurses,” said NYSNA Facebook fan and member Lucie McLaud, of Capital Living Rehabilitation Center and Northwoods at Hilltop in Schenectady, NY.
McLaud, who has been on the Facebook site for less than a year, enjoys being able to engage in conversations and exchange comments or posts. A lymphoma survivor, she is also a fan of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Facebook page and says that time spent online is her “me time” to “chat with other nurses who are my friends at work, to share ideas, or just to vent!”
Anyone with a Facebook account can become a “fan” of NYSNA. To date, NYSNA’s Facebook page boasts 1,836 fans, and averages about 25 new fans per week, from a wide range of geographic locations. The page is monitored daily to respond to member questions and concerns. Advertising, or “SPAM” is not allowed on NYSNA’s Facebook page in the interest of maintaining an unbiased forum to address nursing issues.
Fans of NYSNA’s Facebook page are asked to observe association protocol and adhere to the guidelines for posting. Social media has the potential to reach a very broad audience, but it is not an appropriate forum for detailed discussions of association business that has not yet been reviewed by NYSNA’s Board of Directors or other governing bodies.
If you have a current Facebook account, you can help us reach 2,000 fans by clicking the Facebook icon at the bottom of NYSNA’s home page. We can’t wait to hear from you!