Facebook vs. web pages vs. the wiki for TMS practitioners

From The TMS Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

TMS practitioners occasionally ask me about whether I think it is a good idea for them to put a page up on Facebook. What follows is the response I gave the last time someone asked. The bottom line is that I'm not a big fan of what Facebook has to offer.

Sure I'd be glad to share the little that I know, though I'm not a big fan of Facebook's offerings in this area, at least not for TMS practitioners. They don't have any sort of directory of practitioners. Rather, individuals or corporations can set up "Pages" that people can become "fans" of. The problem with this is that all of your friends on Facebook (and perhaps even complete strangers) can see that you are a fan of this Facebook page. The average Facebook user has something like 120 Facebook friends, and may not want all of them to know that they have a therapist that they like and/or that they are working through mindbody issues. Worse, they may not know that their participation in the group will be broadcast to the world and might do something that they regret afterward.

The core of a Facebook page is what is called "The Wall," which essentially operates like a blog that you can set so that any of your fans can post to it. This is a useful tool if you have a constant stream of content to post that people will actually want to see. However, finding and uploading that content can become a huge chore that can become a bit like a ball and chain around your neck. If the content begins to look stale, then this looks bad. (My girlfriend is a heavy Facebook user and I asked if I was being too critical and she said that she doesn't like Facebook Fan pages much either unless they have lots of fresh (i.e. frequently updated and high quality) content.) In contrast Facebook pages don't give you much of a chance to share information about yourself and the services that you provide.

As an alternative to this, I'd suggest a standard web page. Alan just put one up and I think he did a tremendous job:


It's concise, exceedingly professional, and doesn't need to be updated. I briefly corresponded with the web developer that Alan used, and my impression was that he knew his stuff.

If you want something free, I'm always very happy to put any sort of content that you want to put up as a "user page" on the wiki. Some examples of these:

Susan Farber, MFT: Managing Chronic Pain So It Doesn't Manage You.

Bob Evans, Ph.D. (potential future guest at the Peer Supervision teleconferences): Waking the Tiger, A Brief Review.

Colleen Perry, MFT: DSM IV criteria for clinical consideration.

Harold Goodman, DO: My Insomnia Story

Me: TMS Practitioners and Facebook. (what you are reading.. :-) )

These links won't have quite the polish of putting your own site up (though, frankly, neither will a Facebook page), but I'm happy to completely handle the technical details (I'm not able to handle the technical details for Facebook pages, but I can put you in touch with Dr. Stracks, who has given them a try. I can also send you a PDF of a manual that I found for Facebook pages. It's a bit overwhelming, though, and you might do better to just start one and play around with it.)

In terms of directories, the wiki's directory gets about 895 pageviews a month. We're always very happy to add information about you to the list. Just email practitionerfeedback@tmswiki.org .

Here's some info about the type of information that we like to add:
Updating information about yourself in our practitioner list

We also typically link to the "user pages" that I described above from listings on the practitioner directory.

Hope this helps!

DISCLAIMER: The TMS Wiki is for informational and support purposes only and does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. See Full Disclaimer.