Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Social Media and Scientists: From AMA to Libel

Bertalan Meskó at ScienceRoll blogs about new guidelines from the American Medical Association how doctors should use social media. AMA recommends that doctors "maintain appropriate boundaries of the patient-physician relationship" and "use privacy settings to safeguard personal information," among others. Mesko finds the guidelines disappointing: "I expected much much more from AMA," he writes. "Clear recommendations about how to use Facebook privacy settings properly with videos or screenshots; what to do when a patient sends us a friendship request on Facebook or when a patient writes about an adverse drug event on our blogs. Case studies, clear examples, tutorials, presentations."

Meanwhile, Martin Robbins at The Guardian in the UK highlights libel law guidelines for scientific bloggers. Several scientific and writers associations got together to come up with the guide, which is available here. Robbins says that libel charges are becoming more of a concern for bloggers: "Many bloggers have had to pull posts offline - there's no shame in it, it's often the only rational thing you can do faced with a threat that has the potential to ruin your life for years to come," he writes.

Also in The Guardian, Evan Harris urges the UK government to consider new libel reform laws that would better protect "citizen journalists." The recommendation "stresses the importance of ensuring that the legislation catches up with the internet age and prevents the chilling effect on bloggers free expression by the bullying actions of companies and powerful individuals who threaten expensive legal action over something written," he writes.

The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.