By Ken Anderberg, Publisher/Editorial Director, March 2010
I'm known as something of a Luddite to friends and co-workers — a strange admission for the editorial director of a technology magazine — but true to some extent. I don't have a cell phone and I don't have time during my busy day to visit social networking sites like Facebook or Twitter. Quite frankly, I find those venues huge time-consumption monsters and of little value at work or play.
Don't get the wrong idea, however. In 1994, I was one of the early magazine publishers to create a Web site for my own magazine. Prior to that, as editor of a prominent magazine, we spearheaded the company's move to computer use. (We opted for MacIntosh systems for the 24 magazines at the company.) Here at Health Management Technology, just in the past 10 months, we've totally revamped and redesigned our Web site, gone from a monthly e-newsletter to weekly distribution, created accounts on LinkedIn, Twitter and FaceBook, and now are adding social networking community Forums to our Web site.
Just this past fall, we were successful in recruiting more than 1,000 healthcare experts to sign on to our LinkedIn site. They have been busy over the past few months exchanging ideas and comments, helping each other with work-related issues, or just carrying on conversations. We are now in the process of inviting them to be a part of the seven Forums on the Health Management Technology Web site.
When we reinvented our Web site last fall, we created six "microsites" so that related information could be organized where it most belonged. Those microsites cover Electronic Records, Revenue Cycle Management, Payers, Network Infrastructure, Group Practices and Hospitals. Each one of those microsites now has a related Forum, in addition to the general Forum that anyone can participate in.
Now, we're ready for you, our subscribers, to test the waters. Our intent is to create a social network at www.healthmgttech.com where you can ask questions, share ideas with peers, comment on the latest issues and trends in healthcare IT, or just chat with friends in the industry.
These Forums will not be marketing vehicles, although they may have corporate sponsors. We will monitor the conversations to ensure participants are not subject to sales messages. Your involvement is crucial to the success of these Forums — and I hope you will visit them today to get involved.
My lack of a cell phone aside, technology has played a key role in all of my jobs over the past 35 years. This is just the latest chapter of technology advances where this Luddite has been involved. Let me know what you think.