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‘Twitterland’: a brave new world?
  1. Elena Nikiphorou1,2,
  2. Paul Studenic3,
  3. Alessia Alunno4,
  4. Mary Canavan5,
  5. Meghna Jani6,
  6. Francis Berenbaum7
  1. 1Department of Academic Rheumatology, King’s College London, London, UK
  2. 2Department of Rheumatology, Whittington Hospital, London, UK
  3. 3Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Medical University Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  4. 4Rheumatology Unit, Department of Medicine, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy
  5. 5Department of Molecular Rheumatology, Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
  6. 6School of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, Arthritis Research UK Centre for Epidemiology, Centre for Musculoskeletal Research, Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK
  7. 7Department of Rheumatology, Inflammation–Immunopathology–Biotherapy Department, Pierre and Marie Curie University, Saint-Antoine hospital, Sorbonne University, Paris, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Elena Nikiphorou, Academic Rheumatology Department, King’s College London, London, UK; enikiphorou{at}gmail.com

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In an era of rapidly expanding digital technologies and social media (SM), considerable transformations in the delivery of healthcare are taking place. SM channels such as Facebook and Twitter represent a generation of online platforms that foster user-generated content, social interaction and real-time collaboration.1 In this letter, we review the advantages and disadvantages of engaging with Twitter within the rheumatology field.

The ease of access to a wide range of SM platforms provides a dynamic medium for professional interaction. Twitter is gaining increasing attention by healthcare professionals as a platform for information sharing and professional networking, learning and communication. Twitter journal clubs (@RheumJC2 and @EULAR_JC3) are some examples of novel educational uses of Twitter.

Despite the many positive applications of Twitter, potential hazards cannot be underestimated. The restricted character count of a tweet (140 characters) represents an important limitation, posing a …

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