Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
November 17, 2009 9:38 PM

H1N1 And Social Media (There Is A Connection)

Are you going to get the H1N1 vaccine?

There are many people who are very on-the-fence about this vaccine (well, actually, all vaccines). One of the better sources that persuaded me to get the shot (got mine today) was this: World Heath Organization: Safety of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 vaccines (hat-tip to Amber MacArthur). Without going into the medical and ethical discussion about vaccines, while waiting in line for my turn to get poked (and I don't mean that in a Facebook kind of way), it got me thinking how connected Social Media and getting this vaccine are.

Let's start with this: no, this will not be a Blog post about how something goes "viral."

You don't get the vaccine for yourself, you get it for your community.

A couple of people have commented to me that they think if they got sick they would be able to endure it, and that the people they know got (or will get) the vaccine, so why bother? What most people fail to realize about this flu is that you don't do it for yourself, you do it so that you can't pass it on to other members of your community (like children, the elderly and those with chronic health problems). It's great to think that you have a super-strong and healthy immune system and that if you get H1N1, you can ride it out, but what about those who you are in contact with who don't have the same healthy track record that you have?

Social Media is not about what it can do for you, but rather what you can do for your community.

Those who really benefit from Social Media are usually those who put themselves second, and their community first. It's not an easy thing to do, and it's certainly not something that businesses do/think of intuitively. The idea behind the vaccine is to protect yourself (without question), but the greater good of removing the pandemic from our communities is the real goal.

Don't forget your role when it comes to helping your community - whether we're talking about health or Social Media.

By Mitch Joel