Law Enforcement Agencies and their use of Social Media

Policy Development Research Paper

Social media has turned into a common method of communication between family and friends, community members, politicians, and businesses. As social media popularity grows, the significance of user engagement or popularity has come to light. Engagement through social media dictates various aspects of social media experience and can have both negative and positive effects on the organizations that create content for their social networking page. Due to the high interaction level through social media, law enforcement agencies have identified utility in engaging with the public through social media. Consequently, law enforcement agencies can inform their jurisdictions on community outreach, increase crime prevention, and crime occurrence.

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Based on recent research conducted by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), about 95.9 percent of law enforcement agencies utilize social media in a different capacity, and about 55.9% of agencies that are not using it are considering adopting the practice (Jeanis, Muniz, & Molbert, 2019). While the use of social media in law enforcement agencies has demonstrated great importance in community engagement and outreach, the practice also presents various challenges that create a need for regulation in its use among the law enforcement agencies.

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How Law Enforcement Agencies Regulates Social Media

Social media has been extensively used by law enforcement agencies to enhance public engagement and outreach, and also in fighting crime. While its use has proven to be highly important in the agency especially in building public trust and monitoring criminal activities in different regions concurrently, it has also introduced new problems in the agency. Some of the experienced problems include officers’ misconduct in social media, especially by posting information that can tarnish police image to the public.

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Another experienced issue is officers’ security. Posting personal details on social media gives too many details to criminals such that it is easy to cause security to an officer or his or her family. According to Mihalek and Frankel (2019), the recent secret Facebook group revelation that involved former and current Customs and Border Protection personnel that created offensive posts regarding lawmakers and migrant deaths raises the danger of the use of social media by law enforcement officers. The member of the said group that includes former and current Border Patrol members posted unprofessional content that might be against the agency policy and disgusting. The involved member was put on administrative duty. In a different case, 72 officers in Philadelphia were removed from the street and put in administrative duty for sexist and racial bias claims in social media (Allen, 2019).  In another case, a police officer in Albuquerque, New Mexico listed human waste disposal as his occupation on Facebook, and later fatally shot and murdered a suspect in a traffic stop. Those incidences bring in the need to regulate officers’ conduct in social media, while still considering their right to free speech (Mihalek & Frankel, 2019).

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Should Organizations Regulate Officers’ Social Media?

Social media a highly changed how police departments communicate and share information with the public. It has impacted policing and modified the way police officers do their job. Social media offer an essential avenue for law enforcers to circulate relevant information to the public. Social media is of benefit to police departments since information can be circulated much faster and get to a huge audience in a short time through social media compared to other news media sources. A good example during the incident of bombing in the Boston Marathon. The Boston Police Department was able to share essential information regarding the investigation, assuage fears of the public and correct wrong information through Twitter. Police departments have also relied on social media in various instances to assist in crises such as school shootings. Police are also using social media to enhance citizen contribution in police investigations, leveraging the civic engagement to the public, strengthening the police departments’ public image, recruiting police officers, controlling crowds, getting better input in processes of policy-making, and handling crises.

However, social media is mostly used in aiding investigations and information dissemination (Boateng & Chenane, 2020). This makes social media an important part of the law enforcement process, and unlikely to be eliminated. However, officers need to be responsible while using it since its misuse can be disastrous especially in scenarios such as crisis control, or information dissemination. Accuracy in the two instances is highly important. Hence a high level of professionalism is required to prevent the use of the same technology to destroy public trust toward law enforcement. This means regulation on its use, especially when using the department account is highly important. 

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Best Practices for Social Media in Law Enforcement Agencies

Social media has been extensively used to enhance the law enforcement process. Social media can save or kill a department based on how it is used. In a round table discussion by PI Staff (2019), the police department should use social media to engage the community. Engagement, in this case, means sharing information and being there to answer questions asked to the comment section and also react to different concerns shown by the public in the comments. Another best practice is adjusting the message to fit the media by making the message shorter, eliminating police jargon, and internal codes to adopt plain –shorter versions of the message, and grabbing people’s attention by moderate use of emojis and use of visuals where necessary. The message should be emotionally based on the targeted audience. Also, the officers need to be honest and professional while engaging online.

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According to PI Staff (2019), in terms of professionalism, an officer should behave online as he or she is supposed to behave in the office. This ensures that officers do not engage in unprofessional behavior. The main goal of using social media should be maintained without drifting. Also when engaging, officers need to be aware of an anti-law group that wants to demonstrate that it does not obey the law and be careful while engaging them.

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Law Enforcement Agencies Social Media Use Departmental Policy Outline

Social media is an important part of law enforcement practice in the modern world. When properly used, it can play an important role in information dissemination and crime investigation. However, when wrongly used, it can result in public outbursts and the destruction of public trust. For this reason, police departments need to have a guideline to follow while using social media. Some of the policies that should be included include:

Individual police officers have a right to freedom of speech, however, they have a moral duty to safeguard the integrity of their department in all their engagements.

Policy General Rules

  • Violation of any of the social media use policies can result in disciplinary action that can extend up to the termination
  • Officers should not assume any privacy expectation while using their social media account, misconduct investigation may require one to provide login information for account assessment
  • Any information posted by a police officer to a public social media site might be accessed at any time by the investigation officer, defense attorneys, or media members without prior warning

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Social Media Use in the Department

  • Social media communication is purely left to designated people such as the chief of police, police spokesperson, or police communication department
  • In a situation that one is left in charge of social media communication, a high level of professionalism will be demanded
  • Although mode and tone of communication and means of engagement may change in social media communication, professionalism should remain while engaging with the public
  • Police officers should never share false or incorrect information with the public through department social media; information should be verified before it is released

Social Media Members personal Accounts

  • Police officers are permitted to have personal accounts, however, they should restrain from sharing personal information that can link them to the police department as a security measure
  • No police officer should share his or her photo in their social media accounts while wearing a police uniform, showing police ID, departmental horses or dogs, departmental seals, badges, or patches, or displaying police unmarked or marked vehicle
  • Police officers should not register personal accounts using a job-related email address
  • Police officers are restrained from posting biased information, especially on matters related to discriminative aspects such as race, sexuality, nationality, gender, and religion among others
  • Police officers should demonstrate a high level of moral conduct in their social media communication, they should avoid using uncouth language
  • One should not reveal employment positions while positing in personal accounts.
  • Every member is responsible for any information published, posted, or forward through their social media accounts
  • Members should not create posts or tags to insinuate that they are related or working with other members of the department before obtaining their consent

Conclusion

Social media has become an important part of law enforcement practices. It is being extensively used in law enforcement especially in information dissemination and criminal investigation. The use of social media in law enforcement has played a great role in enhancing public trust and public relations between the police and the community. Today, most police departments have learned how to use social media effectively to enhance public engagement in different policing issues. This has highly promoted efficiency law enforcement. Despite these advantages, the integration of social media in law enforcement has also come with its disadvantage. Some of these include misuse of social media by police officers, especially by posting messages that undermine police integrity in different units of operation. Some information posted and the nature of social media accounts have also exposed police officers and their families to security issues.

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Consequently, there is a need to have a regulation on how police officers use social media both in department accounts and personal accounts. Police personal accounts in various departments are closely monitored to ensure that they are not used to give the wrong impression of police officers in a specific unit or department. The regulations include limiting police officers’ engagement in topics likely to result in biased opinions such as racism and sexism. Controlling police engagement in social media helps in protecting police image and public trust from rogue police officers who are likely to post anything for personal pleasure.

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Why Elon Musk’s Buying Twitter Is The Biggest Power Move

The Acquisition of Twitter

The acquisition of Twitter by the richest person on earth has dominated the headlines for the best part of 2022’s April.

The hostile courtship between Musk and Twitter and the entirety of the nature of the buyout has raised eyebrows. On April 14th 2022, Musk bought 9.1% of Twitter for $2.64 billion. He became the biggest shareholder. A week later, the board of directors invited him to join the board. Musk seemed amenable to it. A few days later, he was nonplus and reluctant to join the board. He explained that he valued free speech and in Twitter’s current state free speech would not thrive nor serve the agenda.

This then developed into an all-out buyout war. The Twitter board proposed using the “poison pill”, a strategy to prevent a total buyout and privatization. Then on April 25th, it was reported that Twitter’s board had unanimously accepted an offer for $44 Billion. This meant the process of privatizing the company had commenced.

This tag of war has had a lot of people questioning Musk’s motive in acquiring the company. Some members on the platform have even threatened to cease using it. Is the motive to make more billions from it? Is the motive to inhibit/control the free speech he has claimed to defend?

Former C.E.O Jack Dorsey tweeted the same day of the agreement, saying, “In principle, I don’t believe anyone should own or run Twitter. It wants to be a public good at protocol level, not a company. Solving for the problem of it being a company, however, Elon is the singular solution I trust. I trust his mission to extend the light of consciousness.” A statement which could be interpreted as a blessing from the former Twitter boss.

Billionaires and Media Companies

Billionaires owning media/publishing companies is not a new occurrence. Rupert Murdoch owns hundreds of publishing outlets in the US and internationally, most notably Fox and Sky News, Michael Bloomberg has made a fortune from publishing through his co-founded news and information outlet Bloomberg L.P.

Although it didn’t break the internet like the Twitter acquisition, back in 2013, Jeff Bezos, Amazon C.E.O bought the New York Post. Through his leadership that focused on the Post’s economic side and through a technological approach was able to double its web traffic within 4 years reviving an almost dying media giant. Another recent and notable buyout is the Meredith Corporation by the mogul couple, Marc and Lynne Benioff.

Apart from the obvious reason that billionaires can buy media companies because they can, plain and simple, why else would a billionaire or anyone want to buy a media company? And why does Elon Musk want Twitter?

On TedTalk 2022 Elon Musk did hint he wasn’t sure if he would be able to acquire and privatize the company but did state his acquisition of the company was not to profit off of it. He said,”… it’s just that I think my strong, intuitive sense is that having a public platform that is maximally trusted and broadly inclusive, is extremely important to the future of civilization.”

With that statement and a tweet from May 6th that reads, “If Twitter acquisition completes, company will be super focused on hardcore software engineering, design, infosec & server hardware,” it is clear Elon Musk wants to have publishing control which is and will be a very powerful tool in the world’s future which will be run by tech, a field Musk is an expert.

Why Twitter?

Elon Musk has the ability to buy a lot of the already established social media platforms. With his finances, Musk has the ability to start his own platform. So why Twitter?

The social media platform, Twitter, was created in March 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams. The platform was listed in the top 10 most visited websites and boasted over 2 billion search queries a day in 2016. The first reason for wanting to buy Twitter might be that it is already established and successful.

Twitter Presidents

Moreover, the platform has been credited by many for the success of US presidential candidates and 2 term president Barak Obama and Donald J. Trump’s first term win in 2016. Obama is the first president to campaign via the new social media platforms which garnered him global popularity and also the first to directly engage with citizens/followers on social media platforms while in office. Even he has admitted how vital a role Twitter played in getting his message across to the nation.

Trump was banned from Twitter which raised a lot of controversy due to his alleged callous and irresponsible tweets. The former US president however had a lot of engagement on the platform during campaigns and while in office. This shows just how powerful Twitter is as a tool in politics. Trump has even launched his own social media platform, Truth Social, through Trump Media and the site is very similar to Twitter. This is evidence of just how much he values social engagement in his attempt to run for a second term in office.

The president of the United States of America is dubbed the most powerful man on the planet. Among all the other social media platforms Twitter gets the most credit as a president maker. It is fair to assume the richest person on earth also wants to be the most powerful person on earth and owning Twitter is just the first step to making sure he has control.

Power Move

Elon Musk may not necessarily be after the presidency but it is obvious he has seen the amount of potential and influence the platform has.

In the words of Tony Montana from Scarface, “In this country, you got to make the money first, then when you get the money you get the power. Then when you get the power then you get the women.” The latter part of the statement might be irrelevant but Elon Musk has the money and might be now going after the power, a feat that Twitter has proven it can assist in achieving. Imagine one man owning a platform that got two United States presidents elected.

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WhatsApp – Social Media App Analysis

In the social media context, WhatsApp was founded relatively late, in 2009, by Brian Acton and Jan Koum. It has since rapidly grown and has become very popular, with over two billion active users currently. After the beta stage of the application, it was first exclusively launched on the iPhone App Store in November 2009, where the founders launched it as an alternative to sending SMS nationally and internationally. The creators later added support for other operating systems like Android, Windows, Blackberry, and Symbian. Koum and Acton worked for free and looked for external funding; however significant costs led them to change the business model to a paid one ($0.99 for sending verification texts to users.) A novel feature of sending photos was introduced to the application, and user numbers sky-rocketed. In February of 2014, Facebook acquired WhatsApp from its founders for a massive $19 billion and altered the business model by later introducing WhatsApp for Business. 

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The initial developers had created this phone number-based messaging App for simple communication; nevertheless, it took over the internet like wildfire. Due to its popularity, the developers have kept on upgrading more features on WhatsApp. Apart from the messaging features, other features have made WhatsApp remain in the competition, they include the ability to format and send a single text to multiple contacts at once, help save data when using mobile networks, control privacy, share documents, make voice and video calls, use WhatsApp on one’s personal computer and even block spam and people.

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Behavioral patterns connected to the use of WhatsApp are referred to as WhatsApp Use Behaviour (WUB). The behavior can be productive or non-productive. According to Pramod 2016, non-productive patterns or addictive behavior are linked to high WhatsApp use. WhatsApp’s most significant advantage has been to help people connect socially in real-time using a cross-platform phone messenger using one’s data plan. It helps in reducing costs, especially when parties are in different countries. The wide adoption of WhatsApp attributed to better accessibility, ease of communication, empowerment sense of sociability and belongingness, gratification, speedy information sharing, and cost-benefit.  A combination of all these with user-friendly features meant the promotion of user behavioral intentions and attitudes to embracing WhatsApp. The App has considerably advanced communication technology.

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The Technology Acceptance Model can be utilized to incorporate theory and research on acceptance of information technology. The model predicts acceptance, adoption, and utilization of information technology. The approach has comprehensive efforts to express the vital psychological aspects of technology use (Marangunić, 2015). Two variables can be utilized in articulating the factors of WhatsApp acceptance, perceived ease of use, and perceived usefulness. The Technology Acceptance Model is miserly but strong in explaining particular information system and technology.   When utilized with its derivatives, the theory can express essential psychological aspects linked to the use of technology.

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 WhatsApp communication technology was confidently connected to successful interpersonal communications. Matassi et al. (2019) argued that WhatsApp presents fresh opportunities for intimate communications otherwise unavailable for other channels like face-to-face or synchronous communication. One study by Techno Metrica found that about 50% of their respondents claimed to spend more time on raising business profits due to their usage of mobile apps. Apart from that, WhatsApp reinforced people to compile extremely passionate subjective messages while eliminating the social anxiety that usually existent in face-to-face communication (Waterloo, 2018). The Technology Acceptance Model has in the past been used in particular fields in comprehending personal acceptance of IT and can be used to explain the use of WhatsApp relating to the theory of Reasoned Action. The model supports that perceived usefulness and ease of use of technology such as WhatsApp affects the user’s behavioral intention. A study on instant messaging LINE in 2016 by Rick Aditya in Indonesia reinforced a significant link between these two variables and behavioral choices. Perceived usefulness was linked to user behavioral attitude, and perceived ease of use affected perceived usefulness. The study’s justification was that if WhatsApp promotes an individual’s work, then this will be seen as an incentive by the individual to make more use of WhatsApp since a positive relationship helps gain performance.

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Altogether, using WhatsApp might have an addictive effect. Over usage and inappropriate utilization of WhatsApp have been reported, noticeably among students. Knowledgeably or innocently, they become addicted to this communication technology. They feel the urge to significantly use the App for an increased amount of time, affecting punctual carrying out of life’s responsibilities and causing a struggle in occupational and social activities. This may cause social, psychological, and even physical problems.

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The Technology Acceptance Model used best measures the mobile instant messaging application and technology acceptance. The paper identifies the relationship between using WhatsApp and behavioral intentions of individuals.  A strong association was found on purpose of using WhatsApp on perceived usefulness, and also associated ease of use. This App can be utilized by organizations to make employees enjoy their work and increase productivity while increasing their IT skills.

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Social Media, A Societal Trend Affecting Patient Education

Over the past five decades, numerous rapid technological changes have been recorded globally and currently impact nearly all spheres of modern life. In particular, the introduction of the internet and related services is among one of the most notable changes witnessed today. According to Carroll, Bruno & Vontschudi (2015), the internet has greatly transformed the process of communication, sharing of important messages, and peer-to-peer interaction within a relatively short period (p. 95). Today, it is more prevalent than ever; especially as a constant presence in our homes and within the workplace environment.  As a communication medium, the internet has also morphed from simple messaging and chatting services to sophisticated social media applications such as Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. The widespread use of social media today has revolutionized remote interactions and resulted in the “online community” phenomenon where likeminded persons or individuals with similar interests associate on a continual basis. Yet, it remains imperative to consider the implications of such technological changes in nursing. Perhaps one of the most striking aspects of the Information Age is the ever-increasing population of individuals relying on the wide range of services on offer. A future consequence of this current state of affairs is an overall increase in the number of patients and nurses interacting in social media signifying an elevation in basic engagement capabilities. Millennials in the nursing profession grapple with the idea of promoting such changes in a profession with a sizeable older generation which is generally conservative.  Nursing in the Information Age, therefore, represents a yardstick with far reaching consequences for the medical professions the provision of care, and mainly in patient education.

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Fundamentals of Social Media    

            The initial introduction of social media as a major element of the Information Age prompted pundits versed in society’s transformation to posit a future focused on interactions, communication, and education.  Initial speculations were subsequently realized when social media emerged as a key tool in learning and communication owing to the relative ease of access and overall affordability. Today, the permeation of the Telehealth portent, as a product of social media, has seen a considerable improvement in nursing frameworks on patient education (Moorhea, Hazlett, Harrison, Irwin, & Hoving, 2017). Messages transmitted through social media platforms reach the intended target within a relatively shorter period and serves as the epitome of speedy communication. Web platforms and e-mails provide a unique opportunity to relay important information within a relatively short period, allowing nurses to communicate with patients intending to share crucial information regarding their wellbeing. If any of the questions posed remain unanswered, patients are often referred to a specialist versed in the medical field specified to guarantee access to accurately specified information.

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 Furthermore, the internet is seemingly bottomless repository of information and data which can be harnessed to improve individual’s overall wellbeing. Patient education today may also involve actively searching for healthcare information from credible peer-reviewed journal articles and online textbooks. The emergence of this trend is part of a new wave of ideas which underscore the significance of individuals being cognizant of information relevant to their health any given period (Ventola, 2018). For instance, patients today supplement instructions offered during the initial assessment with useful instructional material from government agencies such as the United States Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).  This relative ease of access to information through social media ensures a greater population, ranging from health science students, nurse practitioners, and educators, gain succinct comprehension of best practices applied today within the healthcare sector (Sinclair, Mcloughlin, & Warne, 2015).

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The internet, through social media platforms and applications, has recently enabled healthcare practitioners to offer consultations, evaluations, therapy, and patient education remotely through innovative technology. Efforts to increase the number of platforms offering such services are informed by the essential nature of health promotion today. The initial discharge of patients and subsequent expectations placed on them represents some of the most precarious phases in healthcare. Patients are known to experience a great deal of difficulty sticking to a treatment plan which would otherwise improve their wellbeing (Ventola, 2018). Failure to adhere to available treatment options may be a sign of patient’s reservations to a particular treatment option due to insufficient information regarding its actual significance. Social media offers a unique opportunity for patients to ask pertinent questions about medication management in a bid to improve healthcare outcomes. Additionally, innovative technologies such as video conferencing promote direct correspondence between patients and healthcare providers for the purpose of clarification or further directions on a treatment plan.

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The introduction of this new subset of healthcare has significantly improved its quality by now allowing primary care providers to liaise with specialists who provide crucial care information to promote care delivery. Proponents of using social media in care provision view current trends as a major revolution in the definition of the most appropriate conduits of pertinent healthcare information while particularly aspiring to foster health promotion. Such efforts are likely to address healthcare disparities recorded in the United States today by guaranteeing unlimited access to information capable of promoting care-seeking behavior, ultimately reducing major emergency room cases. The presence of support groups in social media platform has played an invaluable role in offering a sense of community in a manner bound to improve patient outcomes by sticking to the treatment plans provided and in reducing stigma. Innovations such as telepsychiatry apply social media to engage directly with patients. Pertinent questions posed during the course of routine consultations are explored extensively in a manner that explores the behavioral and primary care aspects to guarantee comprehensive coverage.

Read also Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act of 2005

Professional Standards

While social media is commonly hailed as a positive development today, it remains crucial to acknowledge its drawbacks. The prevalence of social media use within the workplace environment for the purpose of patient education today is also associated with misuse. Evidence of blatant misuse of social media within professional settings is prohibited, with offenders risking stern legal and disciplinary action (Grajales , Sheps, Ho, Novak-Lauscher, & Eysenbach, 2016).  The aforementioned standard is also applicable within a clinical setting and may result in lawsuits for periodic offenders.  Healthcare facilities are, therefore, advised to develop and maintain an elaborate code to ensure ethical considerations are upheld and cases of malpractice accorded the appropriate punitive action.

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Conclusion                                                      

Recent technological advances, such as the internet and social media, have by far transformed healthcare and patient education today. The Information Age provides patients with a wide range of options, ranging from online consultations, telemedicine and even to Telepsychiatry. The common thread among these transformations is the application of social media to eventually improve patient outcomes. With the application of professional standards, patients are bound to expect the highest standards of care within a new dispensation.

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Social Media, Body Cameras and Dash Cameras Altering Safety and Professionalism of Criminal Justice Professionals

Describe how social media, body cameras and dash cameras are altering the safety and professionalism of criminal justice professionals

Technology and innovation now play a major role within the criminal justice system. Its permeation within this sphere now means that it is capable of altering the safety and professionalism of criminal justice specialists. Although social media has been hailed globally as a novel innovation, it is a double-edged sword with far-reaching consequences. The advent of smartphone technology and the internet now allows citizens to record their encounters with law enforcement officers during routine stops (White & Malm, 2020).

This allows them to record real-time video of their interaction while making sure that the officer is made fully aware of this fact ensuring that all their actions are within legal bounds. On the other hand, individuals may also make recordings with malicious intent, posting them online and painting the officer in question in negative light. In such a scenario, the public may know little about the facts surrounding the case and proceed to openly castigate the officer. Such bias is now common across the United States and may, inadvertently, turn the public against law enforcement officers and even jeopardize their safety. Enraged motorists have been known to record traffic police during routine stops and even going as far as posting their name, badge number and address online. Such behavior complicates police work and may even put their lives in danger.

Correspondingly, body worn cameras (BWCs) and dash cameras are capable of affecting criminal justice professionals while on duty. These devices were initially introduced to hold suspects and law enforcement officers accountable for their actions (Moriarty, 2017). Generally, police officers have been known to apply the rules of professional conduct when their BWCs and dash cameras are turned on to provide appropriate evidence before a court of law. Major precincts across the United States are currently employing this technology to uphold standards of the criminal justice system and the integrity of officers.

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Interprofessional Staff Update on HIPAA and Appropriate Social Media Use in Health Care

Assignment Instructions

Prepare a 2-page interprofessional staff update on HIPAA and appropriate social media use in health care.

Introduction

Health professionals today are increasingly accountable for the use of protected health information (PHI). Various government and regulatory agencies promote and support privacy and security through a variety of activities. Examples include:

  • Meaningful use of electronic health records (EHR).
  • Provision of EHR incentive programs through Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Enforcement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) rules.
  • Release of educational resources and tools to help providers and hospitals address privacy, security, and confidentiality risks in their practices.
  • Technological advances, such as the use of social media platforms and applications for patient progress tracking and communication, have provided more access to health information and improved communication between care providers and patients.

At the same time, advances such as these have resulted in more risk for protecting PHI. Nurses typically receive annual training on protecting patient information in their everyday practice. This training usually emphasizes privacy, security, and confidentiality best practices such as:

  • Keeping passwords secure.
  • Logging out of public computers.
  • Sharing patient information only with those directly providing care or who have been granted permission to receive this information.

Today, one of the major risks associated with privacy and confidentiality of patient identity and data relates to social media. Many nurses and other health care providers place themselves at risk when they use social media or other electronic communication systems inappropriately. For example, a Texas nurse was recently terminated for posting patient vaccination information on Facebook. In another case, a New York nurse was terminated for posting an insensitive emergency department photo on her Instagram account.

Health care providers today must develop their skills in mitigating risks to their patients and themselves related to patient information. At the same time, they need to be able distinguish between effective and ineffective uses of social media in health care.

This assessment will require you to develop a staff update for the interprofessional team to encourage team members to protect the privacy, confidentiality, and security of patient information.

Demonstration of Proficiency

Demonstrate through the following assessment criteria:

  • Describe nurses’ and the interdisciplinary team’s role in informatics with a focus on electronic health information and patient care technology to support decision making.
  • Describe the security, privacy, and confidentially laws related to protecting sensitive electronic health information that govern the interdisciplinary team.
  • Explain the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration to safeguard sensitive electronic health information.
  • Implement evidence-based strategies to effectively manage protected health information.
  • Identify evidence-based approaches to mitigate risks to patients and health care staff related to sensitive electronic health information.
  • Develop a professional, effective staff update that educates interprofessional team members about protecting the security, privacy, and confidentiality of patient data, particularly as it pertains to social media usage.
  • Apply professional, scholarly communication to facilitate use of health information and patient care technologies.
  • Follow APA style and formatting guidelines for citations and references.
  • Create a clear, concise, well-organized, and professional staff update that is generally free from errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling.

Interprofessional Staff Update on HIPAA and Appropriate Social Media Use in Health Care

Protected Health Information (PHI): Privacy, Security, and Confidentiality Best Practice

The use of modern technologies in the health care organization has introduced a new issue regarding protecting the security, privacy, and confidentiality of patient information in health care organizations. The introduction of digital technology in health care increased the risk of data security, privacy, and confidentiality breach. To prevent this, there was an introduction of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to force health care organizations to observe patient data security, privacy, and confidentiality (Aselton & Affenito, 2014). To be able to keep up with these rules, a high level of interdisciplinary collaboration and self-discipline while using healthcare electronics and social media should be observed among health care organization staff.

Read also Key Elements of Certified Electronic Health Records (EHRs)

Protection of patient data confidentiality, privacy, and security is a personal commitment as a health care professional, especially when using mobile devices and social media platforms. Every member of the health care team should embrace personal good security enhancement practices to protect patient data. Some of these practices include logging off personal accounts after use, having a strong password, not sharing passwords and changing passwords frequently, and only sharing patient information with authorized individuals and for the permitted purpose. All mobile devices used for health care purposes should have a password to ensure their inaccessibility by unauthorized third parties in case of theft. Every member planning to share patient data through the network system should ensure that the data is encrypted to avoid interception, which is likely to interfere with data confidentiality, security, and privacy (Kruse, Sith, Vanderlinden & Nealand, 2017).

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Social media has been reported to be one of the main sources of HIPAA breaches among health care workers. It is well acknowledged that mobile social media and the internet are the processes currently used by people to share information, links, and content via dialogue. The use of social media can be quite helpful in sharing the right information with other colleagues and patients, especially general health information that a patient may need to maintain good health. However, there are a lot of risks involved in the use of social media as a health care professional team. These include a lack of message control. It is important to note that a message, even send by mistake can spread in social media like wildfire; without control or limitation. It is therefore very important to ensure that one does not send any protected patient information through social media, even to a colleague. Sending protected picture, video, voice recording or data through social media create a risk of exposing patient information to a third party, knowingly or unknowingly, risking the HIPAA breach (Ventola, 2014). 

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In a situation where one must use social media to send protected patient information, privacy settings should be reviewed to protect the content and information. In addition, appropriate professional boundaries should be maintained when involved in online patient interaction to ensure patient confidentiality and privacy is observed. It is also important to ensure that the person on the other end is the intended recipient and not a third party sitting behind the device or user’s account. Information in the wrong hands can easily mess with the patient data security. Professionals should always ensure they control what they share through social media, especially since they are not sure of how the recipient may consider using this information in the future (Alsughayr, 2015). It is hard to hide information posted online, especially through the social platform. Thus it is better to protect what originates from you than to hope that the recipient will understand its sensitivity and protect it for you. Careless sharing of information in social media can highly damage individual professional image and even attract legal measures against an individual. It is thus important to be highly professional, selective and careful while sharing this kind of information (Singh et al., 2016).

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Has the Traditional Media Become Less Important In Politics With The Rise Of Social Media?

The world has been experiencing change in the forms of communication, after the invention and spread of internet across the globe. Media industry has been experiencing rapid evolution in the last three decades, and still continues to evolve in new, sometimes unexpected manner. The new media have extensive-ranging effects for political practices. New media have radically changed manners of communication in politics, and ways of operation in government institutions. It has also redefined the journalists’ role and system of the political media. Today, people depend on new forms of media to communicate, in all sectors of operation, including politics. One of the new forms of media that are highly employed in modern communication is social media. Social media is being extensively used in today’s world to facilitate exchange, dissemination, and production of political content within networks, and on platforms which accommodate collaboration and interaction. This has brought about great change on the use of traditional media, which used to play the primary role of disseminating political information in the past (Owen, 2018). This paper focuses on determining whether the traditional media has turned to be less significant in politics, with the rise of social media. Answering this question is important in demonstrating how the change of technology has affected political communication. The article will assess the extent to which social media favourable communication atmosphere to political agents compared to traditional media, and aspects of social media that makes it more preferable than the traditional media in political communication. 

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Social media is regarded as a group of internet-founded applications, which is built on the web 2.0 technological and ideological foundation that permits the exchange and creation of user generated information. Social media have in the past few years demonstrated a rapid user count growth to over 800 million people in facebook and over 200 million users in Twitter, based on 2012 research. This social media applications mainstream adoption has altered the information diffusion physics. The major obstacle for an individual who required some information to spread via a community was the technical infrastructure cost needed to reach a huge number of people. This bottleneck has been extensively eliminated, with the current widespread internet access. In this regard, personal publishing modalities that include weblogs, micro-blogging and social network sites have turn to be more predominant. The process through which people coordinate, organize and locate groups of persons with similar interest,  the nature and number of available news and information sources, and the aptitude to  share and solicit ideas and opinions across different topics, have all experienced drastic change with social media rise (Stieglitz & Dang-Xuan, 2012). The Social media have recently been said to have an effect on the communication and public discourse in the society. Specially, social media are used increasingly in political context. Social media site such as the facebook and microblogging services such as Twitter, were more recently believed to contain the ability for augmenting political participation. Although twitter is a perfect platform for spread of both political and general opinion, publically by users via their networks, political institutions which include political foundations, political parties and politicians, have also started using facebook groups or pages with intention of getting into direct dialogs with the public, and promoting more political discussions (Stieglitz & Dang-Xuan, 2012).  

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Social network platforms are a crucial technique for gathering news and information from traditional news media organizations, friends, or families. According to Booulianne (2015), about 50% facebook users track traditional sources of news through facebook, though more significantly, 78% users in facebook report being incidentally exposed to news via social media ties. This means that social media does not replace journalism, but the means in which journalism ensure that information reach the public. Social networking has made news sharing process among members of a network, easier. Today, a user just need to click on ‘like’ or ‘retweet’, then all members connected to the one’s social network will get the news story access. According to Booulianne (2015), social network platforms can enhance the news sharing from those that are well-informed, to those who are less informed via incidental learning. The research demonstrates that 45% of 15- to 25- year olds youths reported obtaining their news from friends and families via Twitter or Facebook, at least once per week. Thus, social networking platforms might be specifically significant for informing young population (Bialik & Matsa, 2017). Social media has also introduced unprofessional form of journalism, where member of the public can capture interesting incidents in their vicinity, post on social media in form of pictures or videos and attract audience. Generally, traditional way of disseminating news is losing or has lost popularity. Although their news content is still treasured, majority prefer following their news briefing in twitter or facebook for more accurate news, rather than waiting for news time as it used to be the case in the past. This includes political news. 

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Social media is also said to play a great role in promoting political participation. Social media has been thought to enhance various kinds of political engagement, although there is no enough research evidence to support this. In a husk, for social media to create an effect on public participation, contingencies chain needs to be realized. Citizens need to expose themselves, either incidentally or intentionally to political information they consider to be relevant. Incidental political information is very frequent in social media.  There is a high likelihood of coming across political information, even when one does seek it, especially in situation where there are burning political issues in the country. According to Knoll, Matthes and Heiss (2018), uninterested individuals have constant encounter with unintentional or incidental exposure to political information, since such content are frequently pushed to them by their relatives, friends or other acquaintances and hence, it is hard to ignore.  This gives social media an upper hand in promoting politics (Young, n.d.). There are also political ‘memes’ that are easily shared and spread through social media. These memes initiate individual interest to follow on the political stories that inspired them.

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The main success of social media in promoting political affair is due to its extensive use by people of all age groups, particularly the youths. The research has clearly noted low level of youths’ participation in politics, especially during the times when traditional media dominated the field (Young, n.d.). The main appealing aspect of social and digital media is that sharing and capturing information and news is easy and cheap. This enables ordinary individuals to share information with extensive audiences from anywhere. The extensive use of digital technology especially among the youths makes it easy for them to access political information through social media. This means, that social media can be used to develop a political platform where every person can be reached. The interactive nature of social media also makes it easy for the population to express their dissatisfactions, frustrations, dislike or likes based on the topic or leader in questions. This encourages more people to participate either actively or inactively by reading opinions of others or airing own contribution (n.a, 2018).

Read also Difference Between Social Media And Other Medias

The internet and its facilitated devices make information easily accessible and instant, enhancing new kinds of political and civic action among youths. According to Baumgartner and Morris (2010), the cognitive and personal connections of young people can be promoted through digital communication, which is a social relations norm among youth. Since youth utilize digital technology to enhance their social relationship, they might also employ it for civic and political engagement. In Baumgartner and Morris (2010) views, young adults aged between 17 and 31 associate being politically engaged with finding information, having political knowledge, knowing major candidates views, and being guided by information while voting. Youths have a preference for participatory social media, which support personal expression, permit them to organize political or social action with peers, and permit them to make contribution to digital knowledge body.  In Baumgartner and Morris (2010) views, youth, particularly users of social network seem more probable to take part in online politics. The research has also established that civic engagement is related to extensive use of facebook, while political participation is related to joining facebook groups. Moreover, offline political participation is related to online political participation. Although active political participations such as signing online petition are not popular, online participation has in the past initiating strong changes offline, in different parts of the world (Baumgartner & Morris, 2010). This analysis demonstrates that social media plays a great role in attracting youths into politics, and achieving great political results than traditional media has ever imagined.  

Read also Characteristics of Social Media

   Different from the traditional media, online media can be used to initiate political change and to propagate political agenda. Unlike traditional media which is none-interactive, social media can easily be used to fuel a revolution spirit in a population, following unpleasant political occurrence. A good instance is in 2011, where new media was used in Philippine to organize demonstration against congress stand to protect a corrupt president that was supposed to be impeached. This happened only two hours after the announcement. Members of the public were able to share the message using short text messages that requested them to come out and meet on Epifanio de los Santos Avenue. Majority of the message receivers passed the message on to their network, and within no time, most people living around the selected venue were in a meeting. The message was passed to over seven million people in the country, and within two days, there was a big crowed, big enough to paralyze the city operations (Shirky, 2011). These kinds of demonstrations have been quite common in the 21st century, following the expansion of internet use and extensive spread of hand held digital technology. They include a successful demonstration in Spain in 2004 and Arabs Green movement uprising that started in Iran in 2009 June influencing a number of Arabic countries into revolution and ending in Egypt. All these demonstrations were propagated using short messages, which were shared among individuals network, reaching millions of people (Karlsen & Enjolras, 2016). Such kinds of political protest cannot be organized by use of traditional media, especially due to lack of interaction.

Read also Effects of Social Media

Social media has also been extensively used to promote political campaigns, and to communicate political manifestos and ideologies in different parts of the world, especially in the US presidential election. The Obama campaign team in 2008 revolutionized the social media use in an election which they were sure they could have lost with the use of the traditional media. The campaign utilized features of advanced digital media which capitalized on community building, collaboration and networking ability of social media to develop a political movement. The campaign team ensured that they were active on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook among many other social media platforms that focused on specific constituencies, for instance Glee, AsiaAve and BlackPlanet. Social media was utilized to collect data on consumers and people’s political preferences, and built voter profiles to follow unique groups that include young professional voters, by use of customized messages (Kumar & Natarajan, 2016). The tradition of using social media during campaigns has been carried forward in the other two presidential campaigns in the country. American president is also using social media widely to report on major day engagements, to comment on burning political issues and the country’s foreign affairs among other things. In conclusion, traditional media has been greatly faced out in normal living and political world, with social media taking over. However, traditional media is still being highly respected for provision of accurate news or information, without ‘Fake news’. However, to remain viable, most of the traditional media is considering using social media platform to share their news. This makes it easy for the public to still depend on them for breaking news information, since they are likely to display verified news than any other group. This move by traditional media to integrate modern platform is a clear indication that traditional media has become less important with rise of social media, especially in news dissemination and in creating interactive political platform. However, traditional media inability to create an interactive communication platform has made it lose its popularity and preference in the political world. Social media seems to attract a larger crowd creating a better political ground for any politician. They also permit real time interaction give people a chance to access their leaders and information in a better way than before. It also provides people a better chance to air their opinion among other things. All these good features of social media have made it superior over traditional media in the modern world.

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Social Media and Human Resource Management

The world has in the recent past experienced increase in the use of social media in all places that include workplaces. This has highly changed people’s behaviors in the workplace, where people tend to spend most of their free or even work time on social media. Social media is also widely used by the companies for public relation which include enhancing the company relation with its customers.  Social media has also been attracting human resource review during hiring and even for confirmed workers as a way of evaluating their character and behavior. This extensive use of social media has thus created a significant impact to the human resource management of different organizations. This paper analyses the impact of social media on HRM.

Influence Social Media has on Human Resource Management Success

Social media has a great influence on HRM activities in today’s workplace. Social media attracts HR professional urge to investigate more about a job applicant or an employee through their social media accounts. Most of them view their public profile and learn more about their personal details and character from their post. This is likely to influence their decision regarding an applicant or their judgment regarding an employee, and in most cases assist them in making the right judgment with regard to the new employee character or in any other matter other than discriminative aspects (Wilkie &Wright, 2014).

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Social media can also aid in identifying the right individuals based on their qualification. Media such as LinkedIn is a professional network that can easily link the company to the kind of employee it is searching for based on their qualification (Wright, 2014b). According to Waden (2016), most workers are found to use significant part of their working time to engage in social media activities. This is said to affect the individual work productivity and eventually resulting to a considerable decline in organization productivity. Uncontrolled use of social media is also likely to affect the image of the company. This mostly happens when unauthorized workers make post on behalf of the company without much scrutiny on the content of their posts (Swain, 2017).

Challenges of Human Resource Management Professionals Using Social Media to Learn about Current and Potential Employees

HRM professional are currently experiencing challenges accessing job applicants and employees personal accounts in the social media. According to Wilkie and Wright (2014), different states are making laws to prohibit HRM professionals from asking for personal social media accounts login details from their employees or job applicants. These laws which have by now been enacted in twelve states regards asking for login details from employees as a bleach of individual privacy and hence it is prohibited. The American congress is also pushing to be able to enact similar law as a national law. This according to Wright (2014a) will protect people who post anything on social media without thinking of the consequences it can bring to their professional life.

Another major challenge HRM professionals are facing is legal risk of obtaining personal details protected by the antidiscrimination law in employment. Most social media accounts owners give so many details about their lives which include their age, race or ethnicity, and religion among other protected personal information. The HRM team fears that dismissing an employee due to other permitted reasons may initiate legal battle claiming having been terminated due to discriminative reasons. This can highly take place especially if the employee knows that the HR had access to his or her detailed personal information from the social media (Wright, 2014a). Moreover, HR cannot dismiss an employee based on something he or she posted in states where social media privacy law is enacted, unless it can be viewed in a public domain; while viewing the profile without having to login.

Use of Social Media in Private Companies with Regard to HRM

Social media is extensively being used in various private companies to enhance HRM activities. Zappo for instance has recently abandoned the traditional method of recruiting which involved positing job in its website and waiting for applicants to apply to a new method that focuses on using social media. In the new system, anyone interested in working for the company should join the company’s social network known as Zappo insider where the company will be posting available jobs openings. The company gives its social media members a higher priority than other people in job provision (Robb, 2014). Kroger Co. is another company that has transferred its recruiting process to social media. Kroger HR basically shares job openings to people through the company Twitter and Facebook accounts. This has enabled the company to reach demography of workers they could have never attained in the previous means of job opening advertisement. Spitfire Group is also using social media to attract new talents. The company integrates LinkedIn, twitter and Facebook in a Financial Force HCM system which is a cloud based system for managing human capital in sales department (Rabb, 2014). This demonstrates that social media use in HRM activities is growing extensively and more is still anticipated in the future. 

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Parenting Limiting Teenagers’ Use of Social Media

The invention and development of mobile devices, internet and social media platforms has highly changed the society. People are currently interacting more virtually than they do physically, especially in social media. Digital technology has turn to be very popular not just to the grownups but also to children and teenagers. Most teenagers today have social media accounts where they interact with their peer, post their updates, photos, and videos among other things. Sometimes these teenagers are engaged in activities that could be considered unhealthy for their age and future. Social media has been associated with growth of a number of vices for young children which include cyber bullying, and radicalization of teenagers among others. This has made most parents reluctant to permit their children to use social media unsupervised. The European commission’s General Data Protection Regulation enacted regulation demanding parental consent prior to commercial services processing of personal information for children below 16 years old, which was later reduced to 13 years (Magid 1). This move initiated a debate on whether parents should be permitted to limit the use of social media by teenagers. This paper evaluates varying positions regarding this matter.

The use of social media has increased among the world population in the recent past. Today, most people including teenagers spend a considerable amount of their time on the social media. This has been highly facilitated by growth in smartphone use among teenagers. According to  atechnology use survey conducted in 2014 to 2015 by Anderson and Jiang (1), ownership of smartphone has turned to a nearly universal element of life of teens where by 95% of teens currently report having access or owning a smartphone. These mobile links are consequently fueling more-persistent activities online, such that about 45% of teenagers now claiming they are online on an almost-constant basis. The use of social media by teens has for a number of reasons been considered unsafe. According to Ramasubbu (1), peer pressure susceptibility and difficulty in or lack of self-regulation makes teens in social media vulnerable to various evils that include cyber bullying, sexting, and facebook depression, which are genuine threats. Social media also introduces other life threats that include sleep deprivation, internet addiction and social network-induced obesity. Despite the risks, social networking certainly plays a crucial role in learning technical skills and extending social links. After weighing the risks and benefits, different individuals have conflicting stands regarding allowing or disallowing teenagers to use social media with or without parental supervision.

Exposure of teens to social media has both risks and benefits. However, the risks experience in teens’ exposure to social media can be minimized through parental control. Parental control in this case involves knowing the teenager virtual social connection that include the child’s friends the kind of stuffs those kids share or discuss in the social media. This will make it possible for parents to guide their children on how to use social media responsibly for their own benefit and t protect innocent teens from encountering challenges that may come along with unmonitored exposure to social media. Parental monitoring ensures that teens are not involved in risky behaviors that can influence their future negatively. It also guide teens in understanding why some information should not be shared in a public platform, especially in the internet where such information can easily be duplicated such that it is hard to completely eliminated it in the social platform after posting it. Thisensures that they are able to use the social media responsibly even in the future.

However not everyone thinks that teens use of social media should be limited. According toDrexler (1) limiting teens use of social media either through direct snooping to their social accounts or though indirect snooping by viewing their pages as close friends do infringes their right to privacy. Teens are entitled to privacy especially in social media where one can say things that are not even true to fit in. Parental interference may discourage teens from interacting freely with their teens and thus, making them missing out on important personal growth matters or in skills earned by use of modern technology.

In Drexler(1) views enacting supervision law creates a great possibility for some young people whose parents are illiterate, lack technology knowledge or have limited access to this technology to miss out on important technological aspect in their growth, as most of them will not find importance of consenting to such technologies. Moreover, some parents may shy away from filling in the consent in fear of being exposed to government agencies especially the immigration. Consequently there will be a high level of imbalance among youths on the development of technical skills acquired in social media use. Thus, parental involvement in the use of social media may limit the technology use of these teens creating imbalance in teens’ technological development.      

Gould and Guardian Readers (1) refute the idea of parental limit in teens use of social media claiming that teens freedom in use of social media teaches kids an essential lesson on how to conduct themselves in a virtual environment. It teaches them on the meaning of public, what to share in public and what to remain in private through experience. It also teaches that some mistakes done over the internet cannot be erased. This cannot be learnt by being strictly supervised but by letting them exposed, to be able to learn. This gives them the knowledge they require to be able to behave responsibly over the social media in the future. In Gould and Guardian Readers views, parents can protect their children from the social media vices without surveillance to their act in the social media. According to him, most of the vices in social media are not caused by technology, but by individual behaviors. Thus, it is enough for parents to speak to their children, caution them on the vices and give them the freedom they need. In Gould and Guardian Readers, parental guidance and trust will be enough to caution a teen on what to do and not to do in social media.

The main strength of refuting argument is that the individual involvement in social media is basically defined by individual behavior. This implies that a child who is well behaved will find it inappropriate to have some kind of discussion in social media or sharing some pornographic materials in the social media. This implies that the situation is not defined by the system, but by individuals. Refuters consider limitations of teens on social media by parents as an interference of right. This is a weak argument since no parent would offer privacy right to jeopardize their children’s safety. Children have right to be safe and to be protected from social vices that can destroy their future.

Exposure of teens to social media can be beneficial to them and risky at the same time. After weighing the goodness and vices of this act, the regulation body found it necessary to demand parental supervision for younger teens. This is a great move in protecting negative social media influence to young kids. However, the critics’ terms this as interference of children’s right and as a way of limiting the development of their inner control. They also think that this can create inequality in the development of technological skills among teens, especially for those whose parents have other personal reasons to limit their use of technology. Nevertheless, it is important to realize that social media is a new technology that is likely to influence teens life both negatively and positively. Parents thus have a role to safeguard their children from social media vices and promote its positive outcome.

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A Viable Social Media Strategy And Marketing Research Tool Help Understand The Target Market For A Health Care Organization

Assignment Instructions

Both social media and the Internet have changed the way that health care organizations market to their target populations. Complete the following:

  • You have been asked by the chief executive officer (CEO) of a local health care organization in your city or town to create a viable social media strategy for the target market.
  • Additionally, he asks that you develop a marketing research tool that will help the organization understand its target market.

Sample Answer – Viable Social Media Strategy And Marketing Research Tool To Help A Healthcare Organization Understand West Allis Target Market

Introduction

Social media refers to digital technologies and media that permit users to exchange or share information, and to generate media content in community or individually. This media is progressively becoming an instrument supporting processes of healthcare, sharing and gathering information, promoting social networking, bringing people together, and communicating bout health issues, and it in this manner support patient empowerment (Denecke et al., 2015). Internet evolution from a restricted, technical resource, current vibrant “Web 2.0”where individuals have the ability to share information implies increasing number of persons living with different health problems are now placing private health facts into public  domains that include blogs, discussion boards, virtual environments, videos, and social network sites (Denecke et al., 2015). The great use of social media in positing and searching health information provides a great opportunity for healthcare marketing through social media. This paper evaluates how social media can be used to access the targeted market in healthcare industry.

Social Media Strategy for Target Market

The targeted market is basically people in the surrounding where the hospital is located. One of the best strategies to get to the targeted market through social media is by establishing a health blog. The blog should basically discuss health issues affecting people in the targeted market. The blog should basically be a guide to healthy life and it should thus focus on pointing out the health problem or diseases, their causes, the people at risk in the population, how the condition can be prevented, primary measures to be taken when infected or when one is suffering from the condition, and the support one should get from the health care organization and those that offer the needed care. The blog can act as a healthcare marketing tool where patients with various conditions will be referred for better treatment and care (Ventola, 2014). The blog should also be interactive such that the readers can ask questions and receive response, or they can give their experience or reaction toward the issue or the quality of the provided healthcare services.

The blog can also be linked to various social media pages and accounts in MySpace, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube that are managed by the healthcare organizations. These social media platform should similarly address health issues addressed in the blog. Their main aim would be to expand the blog discussion by sharing the blog link or gathering more opinions by enhancing message accessibility and extensive discussion regarding the health issue to all targeted individuals (Ventola, 2014). Thus, social media will be used as a means to recruit the targeted population to the healthcare organization blog. This will highly aid in blog marketing and with time, most people will be seeking the blog for more healthcare information, and direction to better care. YouTube accounts should mostly focus on providing professional opinion regarding the health issue and guidance on how one can seek health assistance from the healthcare facility (Denecke et al., 2015). The blog should also permit patients to book for important healthcare appointments, especially with regard to serious or common health issues addressed in the blog. The blog title should clearly link the blog with the healthcare organization, targeted market and health issues. This will make it easy for the readers to trust and own it, since it will clearly be addressing their health issues based on the title (Ventola, 2014).

Marketing Research Tool that Will Help the Organization Understand its Target Market

Market research refers to the process of collecting information regarding the targeted market, competition and customers. It can assist an organization in learning and understanding more about the targeted market. Market research helps one to understand the market needs, wants, believes and reaction to various situations. The best tool that the organization can use to understand the targeted market is a survey. The targeted region contains three major cities, with a population of about 34725 individuals. This quite a big population to access to and hence, it must be well represented in the research. Survey is the best market research tool since it will ease the coverage, eliminate biasness due to random participation and ensure that more is known about the targeted market. The population is considerably diverse based on gender, age, socioeconomic status, level of education, race and ethnicity, marital status, and area of residence. All these factors play a significant role in determining the population health. Thus, they need to be considered in the market research and thus a tool that will manage to gather more information within a short time period like a survey questionnaire would do, will be very relevant. The identified tool should also have the ability to extract information form wide variety of the people in the targeted region, including those who would feel shy to participate in a face-to-face encounter. The survey question will be simple and will use simple language. Moreover, they will be distributed through various methods including electronic methods such as emails and via social media links (Mahajan, 2015).

To ensure electronic distribution of the questionnaire, online survey platforms will be used to ease in the capturing of participants responses and in the analysis and interpretation of the data. Online distribution will also increase the number of the respondent and the sample, and hence obtaining the actual picture on the ground. The survey link will be shared in social media platforms that include Facebook, Twitter, WhatsUp and MySpace (Patino, Pitta& Quinones, 2012). Questions in the survey questionnaire will focus on determining the health issues the location is experiencing, the available care, the healthcare affordability, individual healthcare knowledge, their believe with regard to healthcare services, their expectations, their unmet healthcare needs, and some of the main challenges they experience while seeking or receiving healthcare in the region. This will help the organization to understand the market better (Mahajan, 2015).

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