Daily Strength, the latest media darling that has garnered positive press for producing a Web 2.0 effort in a niche market, crows that it has 544 different communities. It also claims it’s bringing social networking to the health market (something that my friends over at …

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Daily Strength has Many Communities but Not Many Members

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  1. Let me preface this statement by saying I am a Revolution Health employee, but the statement below is my own personal opinion.

    This posting brings up a very important point about the convergence on Web 2.0 media and Health sites. It is important for users to take into consideration that online medical advice is not necessarily from medical professionals and as such should be taken with a grain of salt. I cannot stress enough that users need to check sources and do their homework before even considering making a change to their medicine regimen, and should not make an actual change without first consulting their physician.

    However, there is some benefit from allowing users the ability to read and discuss their experiences. The web 2.0 technologies offer individuals a space to vent, encourage, commiserate and support each other online. Additionally, the web 2.0 media can offer medical professionals an opportunity to hear concerns and worries that patients might not be comfortable sharing during their in person visits.

    The Revolution Health site, (which is currently in preview mode http://www.revolutionhealth.com/preview?code=LL7UjuNn05 ), combines a mix of licensed clinical content (Mayo and Cleveland Clinics) with user generated content (social networking, patient reviews, blogs). Our goal in presenting these two types of information is to help individuals make better informed, responsible decisions towards their health. The site is still under construction but I would welcome everyone to check it out and let us know their thoughts (good or bad).

  2. I hate to break it to you, but online health support communities — giving people a place to “vent, encourage, commiserate and support each other online” are at least 25 years old. Web 2.0 hasn’t really changed a person’s ability to access and share support with one another. The largest online cancer community, ACOR.org, is conducted entirely — are quite popularly, I might add — through mailing lists.

    While Web 2.0 technologies — and I hope, Revolution Health — have much to offer people seeking health information, there are also drawbacks that yes, consumers should be aware of, but also site publishers need to emphasize and help educate their users about them as well.

    If a site is recommending specific treatment options, it is the site’s responsibility to ensure a person with health concerns or patient doesn’t misconstrue those treatment options. There’s a fine line between saying, “Hey, we don’t offer medical advice on our site,” then going ahead and doing just that, but saying, “Well, we’re not responsible for any misinformation you may get on our site about your medical concern.”

    The convergence of health and Web 2.0 technologies isn’t the same as people giving advice on how to fix a faucet or reviewing the latest Britney Spears CD. Misinformation won’t lead to a flooded basement, but potentially to serious medical complications.

  3. I wonder what the co-pay for crying is?

  4. lol

  5. The only good things to come out of Web 2.0 so far are Gmail and YouTube sprinkled with glassy-eyed friendly logos.

  6. I belong to daily strength. I never even noticed the treatment click, if that is what is there. I find it tends to e a good site for support and shairng experiences.
    I know I always try to preface anything medical I might proffer with the adminition, “I am not a medical person” but this was my experience.

  7. Daily Strength is good in theory, but it really needs to pay moderators or skilled people to direct.

    The PTSD/Depression/Self Injury and other groups are at risk of a bunch of ill people making their illnesses greater.

    The treatment for these illnesses is supportive care, something that needs to be enforced or people are at risk for suicide.

    It’s got potential. Just seems to be a lack of accountability that is rampant.

  8. Not sure why Google just sent me the alert that this had been posted (it’s 4 years old), but I thought I’d quickly respond.

    I don’t work with DailyStrength anymore (the company was sold back in 2008), but I’m very proud of what we built. John’s “expose” of DailyStrength was really just bitterness – he’d been working on PsychCentral for a long time and hadn’t really gained mainstream traction. Most people focus on making their own business great, but it was clear he viewed DS as a competitor and decided that writing negative articles about the competition instead of improve his own product.

    That’s not how we chose to do business, and I don’t believe it’s very professional. John was envious of DS; he should have channeled that emotion into improving his product, but, alas, instead he wasted time trashing others hard work.

    Oh well.

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