“They say________ (fill in the blank).”
“Really? Who are ‘they?'”
“You know…people. They say it all the time. It’s all over the internet.”
Ever have one of those conversations with someone? The person seems to be able to quote facts, figures and stories, but you really can’t get an exact reference to where they get their information. Exactly who are “they” and where have “they” been getting their information? Who are these “people.” A quick insight to some of my sites will give you some fast facts, and see my people.
First stop: my email. I receive Google alerts on several topics, such as children smoking and smokeless tobacco to name a few. I can tell a “hot topic” by the number of web stories about it, such as the outrage of a rewrite of the beloved “Twas the Night Before Christmas” because of Santa’s pipe smoking. (Truthfully, I never thought about his nearly 200 year old habit, but some kids might be concerned for his health or that his smoking would not allow him access to their house. Removing the smoking references won’t fundamentally change the poem or the tradition that families have when they read it. But…I digress.) If the email alerts are relevent and interesting, “they” are shared via the @TobaccoPrev Twitter account, Tobacco Prevention in K12 Facebook account, the blog, or if it’s a video our tobaccopreventk12 YouTube account.
Next stop: @TobaccoPrev on Twitter. Although our Tobacco Prevention course is a Florida funded program, information regarding tobacco is pulled from around the world. Federal government sites and news sites are followed as well as sites dealing with tobacco. “They” provide us with information we don’t receive through google alerts, and allow us to keep our course information current. Twitter chats with government agencies, such as the CDC and the FDA, are participated in so we can get the latest information “they” provide.
Final stop: Facebook. Using Facebook for our course allows us to share thoughts about tobacco in more than the 140 characters maximum that Twitter maintains. Information from SWAT clubs (Students Working Against Tobacco) in Florida and other organizatons dealing with tobacco around the U.S. is shared so others can see what “they” are doing.
Of course, I’m leaving out all my other “go to” sites, such as the CDC, FDA, World Health Organization, NCI, and the thousand of other sites I visit to get facts and figures for the blog. The information “they” provide has been indipesensible. You can never be too careful checking out sources.
You know what “they” say… and if you don’t, you can probably find it on the internet.