#onsci: 16th February – Social Media and Science

Kristin: Welcome to February #onsci. The topic this month is “Social Media and Science”.

Why social media and science?

Firstly a disclaimer: Bridge8 is currently working on several projects relating to social media use in science. These include digital communications strategies and social media training workshops. Furthermore, I am producing a session for the Australian Science Communicators Conference 27-29 February in Sydney on “Sophisticated Use of Social Media for Science“. This #onsci topic will be a useful addition to the body of knowledge we can draw on for those activities.

But secondly, anyone can benefit from having a deeper understanding of how social media might be used to support individual and organisation goals in promoting science. At an ABAF Workshop I attended today (#SMinArts) the key questions from emerging users were less around getting started and more to do with gaining traction, building communities and the final details of platforms, metrics and terms & conditions.

This #onsci will explore our questions about how we might engage “better” with social media when communicating science. What do you define as social media for science? What new tools and platforms are you finding interesting? How do you define success (and what is “better” anyway)? Where do you feel safe and what’s a risk professionally? What’s changing in your workplace or the way you work as a result of using social media?

For more background, you can also read this article on Social Media Marketing for Science by Dr Sarah Keenihan.

Join us for the February #onsci this Thursday 16th February at 9pm AEDT, 10am GMT and 5am EST.

Update (17 Feb):

The questions asked during the session were as follows:

  1. How do you measure the success your professional efforts in social media?
  2. How important are metrics (eg no. of YouTube views, followers, FB Likes?) to you and your org?
  3. How do know when you are #doingitwrong? (“failing” at social media)
  4. Are there things that turn you off? What should be “don’t do” advice for social media?
  5. Socmed > Twitter. Where else do you engage and why? What works?
  6. What’s the most creative use of scicomms through social media you’ve seen? Or done!
  7. How much time would you spend on social media? How do you find the time?

A visualisation tool for seeing the tweets and discussion from last night can be found here, and a Storify will be published next week.


  1. […] week there was a discussion on Social Media and Science on Twitter hosted by Bridge8. I am so sorry I missed it. My Masters thesis is to do with science discussions […]

  2. […] With this in mind, we felt it was perfect timing to reflect and extend this learning in this month’s #onsci. We are particularly pleased to introduce one of the subject participants, Vanessa Hill (@nessyhill) as our host for the April #onsci. Vanessa is a science communicator with CSIRO in North Queensland and has been involved in  the #NASAtweetup and#CSIROtweetup.Vanessa and lecturer Dr Will Grant have put together a great list of questions that broadens the #onsci discussion we had in February on science and social media: […]

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