‘For me, the biggest benefit is being ahead of the game’: the use of social media in health work

Deborah Lupton, Mike Michael

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Using social media in the workplace raises a number of issues for any occupation. In this article, we report the findings of a study
that investigated how social media are used in a field of health work. The study uses semi-structured interviews conducted by
telephone with 15 participants working in communicable disease in Australia. We identified several key features shaping the
use of social media. These included the sociomaterial aspects of the workplace (to what extent employees were provided with
access to and allowed to use the Internet), the affordances of social media technologies (fast and real-time communication
and sharing, opportunities to easily connect with peers as well as the public, and the casual tone of interactions), tacit norms
and assumptions about professional behavior and social media (whether social media are considered to be appropriate
tools to use for work and how they should best be used), the specific nature of people’s work (how sensitive, stigmatized,
contentious, or political were the diseases they focused on), and the nature of people’s own experiences (how other social
media users responded to them, what value they perceived they gained from using social media for work, and the types of
networks they were able to establish). The findings of this study highlight the importance of context when considering how
people use social media in the workplace.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Media + Society
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Fingerprint

social media
health
workplace
communicable disease
occupation
employee
Disease
Internet
interaction
interview
Values
experience

Cite this

@article{17649dc3101145509021e7e8b79f8b6d,
title = "‘For me, the biggest benefit is being ahead of the game’: the use of social media in health work",
abstract = "Using social media in the workplace raises a number of issues for any occupation. In this article, we report the findings of a studythat investigated how social media are used in a field of health work. The study uses semi-structured interviews conducted bytelephone with 15 participants working in communicable disease in Australia. We identified several key features shaping theuse of social media. These included the sociomaterial aspects of the workplace (to what extent employees were provided withaccess to and allowed to use the Internet), the affordances of social media technologies (fast and real-time communicationand sharing, opportunities to easily connect with peers as well as the public, and the casual tone of interactions), tacit normsand assumptions about professional behavior and social media (whether social media are considered to be appropriatetools to use for work and how they should best be used), the specific nature of people’s work (how sensitive, stigmatized,contentious, or political were the diseases they focused on), and the nature of people’s own experiences (how other socialmedia users responded to them, what value they perceived they gained from using social media for work, and the types ofnetworks they were able to establish). The findings of this study highlight the importance of context when considering howpeople use social media in the workplace.",
author = "Deborah Lupton and Mike Michael",
year = "2017",
doi = "10.1177/2056305117702541",
language = "English",
pages = "1--10",
journal = "Social Media + Society",
issn = "2056-3051",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Ltd",

}

‘For me, the biggest benefit is being ahead of the game’: the use of social media in health work. / Lupton, Deborah; Michael, Mike.

In: Social Media + Society, 2017, p. 1-10.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - ‘For me, the biggest benefit is being ahead of the game’: the use of social media in health work

AU - Lupton, Deborah

AU - Michael, Mike

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - Using social media in the workplace raises a number of issues for any occupation. In this article, we report the findings of a studythat investigated how social media are used in a field of health work. The study uses semi-structured interviews conducted bytelephone with 15 participants working in communicable disease in Australia. We identified several key features shaping theuse of social media. These included the sociomaterial aspects of the workplace (to what extent employees were provided withaccess to and allowed to use the Internet), the affordances of social media technologies (fast and real-time communicationand sharing, opportunities to easily connect with peers as well as the public, and the casual tone of interactions), tacit normsand assumptions about professional behavior and social media (whether social media are considered to be appropriatetools to use for work and how they should best be used), the specific nature of people’s work (how sensitive, stigmatized,contentious, or political were the diseases they focused on), and the nature of people’s own experiences (how other socialmedia users responded to them, what value they perceived they gained from using social media for work, and the types ofnetworks they were able to establish). The findings of this study highlight the importance of context when considering howpeople use social media in the workplace.

AB - Using social media in the workplace raises a number of issues for any occupation. In this article, we report the findings of a studythat investigated how social media are used in a field of health work. The study uses semi-structured interviews conducted bytelephone with 15 participants working in communicable disease in Australia. We identified several key features shaping theuse of social media. These included the sociomaterial aspects of the workplace (to what extent employees were provided withaccess to and allowed to use the Internet), the affordances of social media technologies (fast and real-time communicationand sharing, opportunities to easily connect with peers as well as the public, and the casual tone of interactions), tacit normsand assumptions about professional behavior and social media (whether social media are considered to be appropriatetools to use for work and how they should best be used), the specific nature of people’s work (how sensitive, stigmatized,contentious, or political were the diseases they focused on), and the nature of people’s own experiences (how other socialmedia users responded to them, what value they perceived they gained from using social media for work, and the types ofnetworks they were able to establish). The findings of this study highlight the importance of context when considering howpeople use social media in the workplace.

U2 - 10.1177/2056305117702541

DO - 10.1177/2056305117702541

M3 - Article

SP - 1

EP - 10

JO - Social Media + Society

JF - Social Media + Society

SN - 2056-3051

ER -