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Twitter tweets and twaddle: twittering at AHPA. National Health Promotion Conference.

Research paper by George G Anderson, Suzanne S Gleeson, Chris C Rissel, Li Ming LM Wen, Karen K Bedford

Indexed on: 10 Sep '14Published on: 10 Sep '14Published in: Health promotion journal of Australia : official journal of Australian Association of Health Promotion Professionals



Abstract

ISSUE ADDRESSED This paper explored the first-time use of Twitter by the Australian Health Promotion Association (AHPA) at its 2013 National Health Promotion Conference.The @AHPA_AU Twitter account and #AHPA2013 hashtag were established and included in the conference program. Attendees were encouraged throughout the conference to use it. A total of 748 tweets were captured under the hashtag #AHPA2013 in chronological order from 16-19 June 2013. Tweets with photos and more than one hashtag were recorded. A thematic analysis of tweets was conducted.Thirteen broad themes were identified, with each of the 748 tweets allocated to one of the themes. Tweets about keynote sessions made up 38% of all tweets, followed by 14% for concurrent sessions. A photo was included in 11% of tweets, and 25% were sent to more than one hashtag. There were 96 tweeters; 75% of them posted five or less tweets and ~9%, including a professional blogger, posted greater than 20 tweets. At the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pre-conference workshop there was a relatively high level of Twitter engagement.Twitter could potentially be useful for promoting conference content and activities, but what it adds in value to a health promotion conference cannot be determined by this study. SO WHAT? This paper highlights the engagement of tweeters with conference content and activities and suggests that tweeting benefited from the engagement of a professional health blogger.