Scientific dissemination is fundamental to make research outputs known, and social networks are an excellent vehicle of information. Their use must comply with some guidelines, defining the intended network and the specific objectives of the information disclosed. The circulation of information occurs at great speed, sometimes uncontrolled, and it is crucial to be alert to the associated dangers. The obstacles, a priori, are obvious: write a little but say a lot in a simple way for a non-specialist audience.
Ines Hasselberg, a researcher at CRIA, underlines the decisive impact of social networks on the dissemination of scientific information today and its effective potential for communication of science: 'We can only appreciate the value and potential of social networks in academia by using them. Each of us uses them in our own way and has our own preferences. Mine is Twitter. We live in a world where there is too much information circulating at a very fast pace. Twitter reduces this information to 140 characters. It's fantastic! Twitter and Facebook, and other social networks, are for me an essential tool in disseminating and promoting research in academia. They facilitate a rapid and extensive circulation of news (whether new publications, events, CfP, etc.), the extension and strengthening of professional networks, and communication / discussion and collaboration among researchers.’
Often the biggest problem is being able to synthesize and capture the attention of followers, from facebook to twitter, linkedin or academia, among many other digital platforms such as blogs, today a 'profile' on the internet may be the fastest channel to disclose a scientific breakthrough and the results of cutting edge research. But everything follows rules and fundamental tips so that this is not a waste of time.
The ability to interact by stimulating networking, updating information, using analogies in less common subjects, and seeking the understanding of all may be the most effective way of communicating with the general public. ‘Participation in thematic discussion forums and support groups may favour the use of any network for professional purposes. However, the various networks have different uses, they complement each other - and do not substitute one another', as Ines Hasselberg reinforces.