Friday, May 29, 2009

Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • Creators of Google Maps unveil "GOOGLE WAVE", just might be the next "big thing" to hit the Web in 2009:
  • Fascinating post from the co-creator of Google Maps discussing the idea behind his latest creation, GOOGLE WAVE:
  • RT @mashable: Neat: Live Twitter polls in Powerpoint:
  • Sergey Brin: "Google Wave Will Set A New Benchmark For Interactivity". Bring it on!
  • @ poll : was trying to get it to work in a powerpoint to no avail. :(
  • MSWorld and Teva Launch Online Memory Game on Inaugural World MS Day: (My Rating: 1 of 5 stars)
  • DTC Perspectives' Bob Ehrlich offers his perspective on DDMAC's draft guidance:
  • Creators of Google Maps unveil "GOOGLE WAVE", just might be the next "big thing" to hit the Web in 2009:
  • Fascinating post from the co-creator of Google Maps discussing the idea behind his latest creation, GOOGLE WAVE:
  • How big is "Google Wave" going to be? Game changer. Not because it's anything new, bc it's EVERYTHING new in ONE place.
  • RT @SusannahFox: 80% of consumers want to share decision-making with docs (p.22 of Deloitte 08 report) (via @2healthguru)
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DTC Perspectives "DDMAC Offers Guidance"

by Bob Ehrlich, Chairman
DTC Perspectives, Inc.

The recent release of the long-awaited draft guidance on risk is sure to have drug marketers studying the lengthy and nuanced 27 page document. I give DDMAC a lot of credit for attempting to better define what is acceptable and violative in print and television ads. They tried to add some meat to previous guidances so marketers and internal drug company regulators can understand what FDA will be thinking about when they screen ad submissions.

My net takeaway is that FDA will be much stricter on balancing benefit and risk claims in the future. They make a point of saying they are looking at the totality of the ad to determine if it meets the required standards of fair balance. This gives them the old “I’ll know it when I see it” defense to consider an ad unbalanced. I like the fact that the latest guidance gives numerous examples of how an ad can provide balance. I also get the sense that a new FDA sheriff is in town and is going to be giving out more tickets.

The FDA expects that benefits and risks will be balanced not only in the number of words but in how those words are written or spoken. This means that you cannot have large type for benefits and small type for risks. You must not obscure the risks with visual distractions or lively music. You cannot use medicalese when a layman’s word is available. The latest draft guidance is filled with examples and explanations of good and bad ads.

Is the guidance going to be helpful to drug marketers and their agencies? I would expect that the guidance will make marketers more careful about what they test. Clearly many of the ad tests in the early stages focus only on benefit statements. The guidance should incent marketers to spend more time showing concepts with risks and side effects included. It should also point out how necessary it is to start copy development much sooner. Too many companies wait too long to begin ad development and then rush the details which includes risk copy. Given all the copy landmines DDMAC is placing, it will take at least 12-15 months from start to finished ad.

This guidance also makes it imperative that all ads are pre-cleared. There are just too many subjective calls to be made by DDMAC to assume your ad will pass muster. An ad not sent in is an ad asking for a warning letter. The new FDA will be looking to punish violators with corrective advertising. Those who run ads looking to avoid FDA pre-clearance are going to regret it. Hopefully FDA will have the staff to offer timely pre-clearance reviews.

I am sure the new draft will get many comments from agencies and drug companies. It is likely, however, to be implemented without many changes. Marketers and their agencies would be wise to study it ( )and review current ads in the context of the new guidance. I doubt FDA will be re-reviewing ads they already screened and approved, but watch out in the future. My guess is the newer ads will look and feel very different as FDA strips out the imbalances. That will be a downer for agency creative folks, as internal drug company regulatory and legal reviewers wordsmith copy and criticize layout.

The draft guidance is meant to clarify but I also suspect it is intended to signal increased FDA vigilance under the new leadership in Washington. It will make for challenges in creating DTC ads but not so severe as to discourage DTC as we know it.

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MSWorld and Teva Launch Online Cognitive-Based Memory Video Game on Inaugural World MS Day

MSWorld is proud to announce the launch of our cognitive-based memory video game, titled “The Case of the Missing Matches,” in recognition of the first World Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Day. MSWorld selected the inaugural World MS Day to launch “The Case of the Missing Matches,” to inform the public about the availability of this new resource on our Web site. MSWorld invites everyone to play this stimulating new video game.

“The Case of the Missing Matches” video game was developed by MSWorld, Inc. with the support of Teva Neuroscience. The mystery-themed game allows users to play as an assistant to a detective in charge of recovering missing items for a popular night club singer. The faster that users match the missing items, the more money they bank in fee as an assistant detective. The game follows a traditional “Memory” format, presenting users with a virtual set of cards, and asking them to match pairs of like cards together, while tracking the time it takes to match all of the cards. “The Case of the Missing Matches” allows users to test their memory skills across three difficulty levels, and provides players with a “Cognitive Clue” every time they complete a game. Users can track their progress and personal best scores. Video game users can compile up to 50 clues on their “My Cognitive Clues” board through continued play of “The Case of the Missing Matches.”

We hope you enjoy and utilize our new, exciting feature now available to all MSWorld members. You'll need to be a registered member of MSWorld to access the game but rest assured, your privacy is protected. We hope you find this new game to be a very nice addition to your leisure time activities.

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Went Walkabout. Brought back Google Wave

5/28/2009 09:15:00 AM
An essay from the creator of Google Wave

(The original post along with all the links in this document can be found here.)

Back in early 2004, Google took an interest in a tiny mapping startup called Where 2 Tech, founded by my brother Jens and me. We were excited to join Google and help create what would become Google Maps. But we also started thinking about what might come next for us after maps.

As always, Jens came up with the answer: communication. He pointed out that two of the most spectacular successes in digital communication, email and instant messaging, were originally designed in the '60s to imitate analog formats — email mimicked snail mail, and IM mimicked phone calls. Since then, so many different forms of communication had been invented — blogs, wikis, collaborative documents, etc. — and computers and networks had dramatically improved. So Jens proposed a new communications model that presumed all these advances as a starting point, and I was immediately sold. (Jens insists it took him hours to convince me, but I like my version better.)

We had a blast the next couple years turning Where 2's prototype mapping site into Google Maps. But finally we decided it was time to leave the Maps team and turn Jens' new idea into a project, which we codenamed "Walkabout." We started with a set of tough questions:

  • Why do we have to live with divides between different types of communication — email versus chat, or conversations versus documents?
  • Could a single communications model span all or most of the systems in use on the web today, in one smooth continuum? How simple could we make it?
  • What if we tried designing a communications system that took advantage of computers' current abilities, rather than imitating non-electronic forms?
After months holed up in a conference room in the Sydney office, our five-person "startup" team emerged with a prototype. And now, after more than two years of expanding our ideas, our team, and technology, we're very eager to return and see what the world might think. Today we're giving developers an early preview of Google Wave.

A "wave" is equal parts conversation and document, where people can communicate and work together with richly formatted text, photos, videos, maps, and more.

Here's how it works: In Google Wave you create a wave and add people to it. Everyone on your wave can use richly formatted text, photos, gadgets, and even feeds from other sources on the web. They can insert a reply or edit the wave directly. It's concurrent rich-text editing, where you see on your screen nearly instantly what your fellow collaborators are typing in your wave. That means Google Wave is just as well suited for quick messages as for persistent content — it allows for both collaboration and communication. You can also use "playback" to rewind the wave and see how it evolved.

As with Android, Google Chrome, and many other Google efforts, we plan to make the code open source as a way to encourage the developer community to get involved. Google Wave is very open and extensible, and we're inviting developers to add all kinds of cool stuff before our public launch. Google Wave has three layers: the product, the platform, and the protocol:
  • The Google Wave product (available as a developer preview) is the web application people will use to access and edit waves. It's an HTML 5 app, built on Google Web Toolkit. It includes a rich text editor and other functions like desktop drag-and-drop (which, for example, lets you drag a set of photos right into a wave).
  • Google Wave can also be considered a platform with a rich set of open APIs that allow developers to embed waves in other web services, and to build new extensions that work inside waves.
  • The Google Wave protocol is the underlying format for storing and the means of sharing waves, and includes the "live" concurrency control, which allows edits to be reflected instantly across users and services. The protocol is designed for open federation, such that anyone's Wave services can interoperate with each other and with the Google Wave service. To encourage adoption of the protocol, we intend to open source the code behind Google Wave.
So, this leaves one big question we need your help answering: What else can we do with this?

If you're a developer and you'd like to roll up your sleeves and start working on Google Wave with us, you can read more on the Google Wave Developer blog about the Google Wave APIs, and check out the Google Code blog to learn more about the Google Wave Federation Protocol.

If you'd like to be notified when we launch Google Wave as a public product, you can sign up at We don't have a specific timeframe for public release, but we're planning to continue working on Google Wave for a number of months more as a developer preview. We're excited to see what feedback we get from our early tinkerers, and we'll undoubtedly make lots of changes to the Google Wave product, platform, and protocol as we go.

We look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Click here to watch a video of the Google Wave Developer Preview at I/O.
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GOOGLE WAVE: Real-time Communication Platform

What is Google Wave?

Google writes: "Google Wave is a new tool for communication and collaboration on the web, coming later this year. Watch the demo video below, sign up for updates and learn more about how to develop with Google Wave." See more at the Google Wave Page.

Mashable writes: "Google Wave is a real-time communication platform. It combines aspects of email, instant messaging, wikis, web chat, social networking, and project management to build one elegant, in-browser communication client. You can bring a group of friends or business partners together to discuss how your day has been or share files."

Google Wave will be launching sometime later this year.
Sign up for Google Wave Updates here.

Read more about Google Wave at Mashable:

Introduction to Google Wave

A Complete Guide

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Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • "Marketwire and ExL Pharma arnnounce partnership"
  • How big is "Google Wave" going to be? Game changer. Not because it's anything new, bc it's everything new in 1 place. RT & I will twt link
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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Marketwire and ExL Pharma arnnounce partnership

05/27/09 -- Marketwire and ExL Pharma are proud to announce their partnership for the 5th Annual Public Relations and Communications Summit, taking place at the Pfizer World Headquarters in Manhattan on July 27-28, 2009. Marketwire is now the official newswire of this leading meeting for communications professionals in pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies.

Featuring over forty-five speakers from top industry companies, this event will provide comprehensive presentations, panel discussions and opportunities for dialogue around issues that are most relevant to product, corporate and organizational communicators. Attendance is limited to 200 attendees due to space limitations, so anyone interested in joining us is encouraged to register now.

For full event details, please visit When registering, please use discount code: P228MW for a 5% discount of registration prices.

ExL Pharma's Lindsay Slater, conference director of the event, says, "We are receiving an overwhelming response to this event. With the outstanding caliber of speakers and companies represented, seats are going fast. Industry communicators are eager to hear from so many VPs from leading pharmaceutical companies and are especially looking forward to the FDA presentation. We are looking forward to an extremely productive and interactive meeting."

This event will provide concrete strategies for a range of topics relevant to PR professionals, including how to prepare for and anticipate change within internal and external communications, as well as how to manage fears and concerns in an uncertain economy.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with an organization of this caliber," said Marketwire Vice President Sylvie Harton. "And we look forward to providing EXL Pharma's attendees and sponsors with the latest tools, services and technologies to enhance the reach of their news and information."

Now in its fifth year, the PR and Communications Summit has earned tremendous accolades from past attendees:

"This conference was excellent. Top notch speakers and terrific networking opportunities with industry colleagues." -- PR Director, SANOFI PASTEUR

"Great overview of what is current and relevant to US Pharma and biotech and excellent speaking faculty." -- Vice President, Global Communications, SERONO

Highlighted sessions include:


The Pharmaceutical Industry Saves Millions of Lives, but Can it Save Itself?\

  • Steve Lampert, Executive Director, Corporate Affairs, ASTRAZENECA
  • Richard Salem, Executive Director, Public Affairs, DAIICHI SANKYO
  • Tim Hunt, Vice President, Public Affairs, BIOGEN IDEC
  • David Krawitz, Executive Director, Global Reputation Management &
  • Product Communications, AMGEN
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Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • Additional Comments by ARNOLD FRIEDE on yesterday's FDA draft Guidance on Risk Disclosures:
  • Tweeting from 30,000 ft. I love Virgin America.
  • Someone just said my tweet from the sky was on CNN. I didn't see it and I'm wtchng CNN on my web-conncted slingbox on the plane-not a joke!
  • - Live pic, from plane, 34,234 feet above Colorado.
  • CBI Webinar "Social Media Strategies for Pharma Product Launch: Engaging Consumer Opinion Leaders":
  • Medical Markting & Media: "Industry coalition goads DDMAC on sponsored links"
  • Richard Branson, hope you read this: On Virgin America f#22 SFO to NYC. Wifi rocks. TV broken. Pwr not wrkng. They say 2 many peeps. WTF?
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WEBINAR: Social Media Strategies for Pharma Product Launch: Engaging Consumer Opinion Leaders


Social Media Strategies for Pharma Product Launch: Engaging Consumer Opinion Leaders

Wednesday, June 3, 2009
1:30 PM- 2:30 PM EDT

Web Seminar Overview:

Online consumer communities are already buzzing about your new product, well before your DTC is even drafted. And while you're hard at work meeting physician KOLs, do you have a plan to engage the Consumer Opinion Leaders who will make or break your launch? A well-crafted social media strategy is a powerful competitive advantage.

This webinar will answer critical questions for pharma marketers launching a brand in the Health 2.0 era:

· How important is social media for my brand?

· Who are Health Activists- social media's new Opinion Leaders?

· How can I execute a social media program within my company's regulatory guidelines?

· What pharmas are engaging Health Activists now, and what lessons can I take from them?

· How do I measure real successes from a social media program?

Register Now


For more information, please visit

Or contact CBI Registration:

ph: 800.817.8601


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by Arnold I. Friede

It is true that FDA in the Draft Guidance officially adopts the "reasonable man" standard for interpreting advertising and promotional claims. That is nice and long overdue. And the agency also says that in interpreting advertising it attends to the First Amendment. Likewise nice and long overdue. At the same time, of course, FDA continues to aggrandize entirely to itself the right and the ability to decide what the "reasonable man", whether physician or consumer, understands in the context of any given promotional piece.

By contrast, the FTC's Deception Policy Statement, from which FDA explicitly borrows the "reasonable man" standard, acknowledges that except when the claim is explicit on its face, the Commission will usually consider consumer survey evidence in determining what meaning to ascribe to the advertising. FDA's apparent unwillingness to consider anything but its own views in determining what the "reasonable man" thinks suggests that adoption of that standard may amount to nothing more than elevation of form over substance. And it belies the agency's professed attention to the First Amendment. Moreover, in describing the adequacy of risk disclosures, and while acknowledging in a footnote the concept of over warning, FDA in the Draft Guidance makes it clear that encyclopedic disclosures remain the legal norm.

At the same time, FDA does not mention its own very recent data which shows that even those consumers who focus on the risk information spend so little time on them one has to question the ongoing viability of a disclosure regime based on the encyclopedia. And of course as I mentioned yesterday, FDA is applying the same rules to all promotional communications regardless of the medium. This is a serious problem in the context, particularly, of new media, which has different technological capabilities and limitations.

For more information on this subject:

See yesterday's post by Arnie Friede on FDA Guidance.

For more information on the Conference Call and the Ad Hoc Coalition, see the Memorandum drafted by McDermott Will & Emery.

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CBS Outdoor adds text messaging program for advertisers

Source: ePharm5

CBS Outdoor has launched a text messaging, or SMS, capability for its advertisers called txt2go. It will include a text keyword on advertiser signs that consumers can use to access marketing messages such as special offers and promotions. The text capability can also exist across all of the advertisers' media outlets. The technology will allow advertisers to track responses to their marketing in real time, and clients will be able to see the performance of their campaign on the CBS Outdoor Mobile Web site. CBS Outdoor says the program makes it the nation's first out-of-home media company to provide a complete text messaging solution for its clients.

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American Heart Association launches texting campaign for Hispanics

Source: ePharm5

The American Heart Association has launched a new text message awareness campaign for Hispanics. Participants in Pase La Voz, part of the American Heart Association's Conozca Su Corazon heart health education program for Hispanics, will get a free, weekly health message in Spanish or English sent to their mobile devices for the next 45 weeks. The messages will include information on risk factors, prevention, healthy cooking, and physical activity. Participants can sign up by sending an opt-in text message and can also visit to access Pase La Voz audio messages, ring tones, and wallpapers. Mobile users can download and forward audio health messages voiced by Hispanic comedians Bill Santiago and Rafael Sigler.

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Online adults using classified ad sites has more than doubled since 2005

Source: ePharm5

 The number of online adults who have used classified ad Web sites, such as craigslist, has more than doubled since 2005, according to an April survey by the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project. The survey showed that 49% of Internet users say they have used online classified sites, compared with 22% in 2005. According to Pew, the findings highlight the growing importance of such sites to Web users. 

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • RT @SocialMedia411: BTW, 8 New Twitter Applications to Launch at The Twitter Conference: Should be a fun day. #140tc
  • RT @pharmaguy: FDA has approved Cialis as a hypertension treatment Should I switch from generic HT drug?
  • Follow Pope Benedict XVI and the Church in the world through you iPhone and iPod Touch:
  • Reminder, LIVE PODCAST TODAY (2 PM EST): "Towards a Rational FDA Policy Addressing the Internet and Social Media"
  • JUST RELEASED! FDA Draft Guidance for Industry on Prescription Drug and Medical Device Promotion:
  • LIVE PODCAST NOW: "Towards a Rational FDA Policy Addressing the Internet and Social Media" - CLICK HERE TO LISTEN:
  • FDA Draft Guidance, Relationship to Ad Hoc Coalition on FDA Internet Policy, and Proposal Memorandum:
  • RT @mashable: ALERT: Twittercut Scam Loose on Twitter (please RT) -
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FDA Draft Guidance: Relationship to Ad Hoc Coalition on FDA Internet Policy

FDA Draft "Guidance for Industry, Presenting Risk Information in Prescription Drug and Medical Device Promotion": Relationship to Ad Hoc Coalition on FDA Internet Policy.

by Arnold I. Friede and Bob Nicholas, McDermott Will & Emery LLP

Today, FDA released the attached Draft "Guidance for Industry, Presenting Risk Information in Prescription Drug and Medical Device Promotion". (Also available at .)

The Draft Guidance does not address the unique features of sponsored links, banner ads, the subject line of e-mails to physicians or patients, or any other attribute of social media or internet communications more generally. Indeed, FDA expressly says in the Draft Guidance that the agency applies the same principles about risk disclosure in prescription drug advertising " . . . to all promotional pieces, regardless of the medium used . . . " (at page 4, lines 103-104).

The Draft Guidance is open for comment for 90 days after publication in the Federal Register, which has not yet occurred. This provides a significant opportunity for the kind of proactive submission we described in the proposal circulated to the prospective ad hoc coalition last week. In other words, without necessarily at this point initiating any new FDA proceeding (but still implicitly reserving the opportunity to do so later), an ad hoc coalition can use the comment period on the Draft Guidance to develop and then submit a response to the 14 NOVs on sponsored links while proposing an alternative paradigm for regulation of risk disclosures in sponsored links and other internet communications that meets the tenor of FDA's disclosure principles but does it in an executionally appropriate manner that acknowledges the uniqueness of the medium and its distinct technical capabilities. This is an important opportunity for a strong, collective response on behalf of the multiple stakeholders that are represented in the prospective ad hoc coalition and yet an additional reason for organizations to participate by contribution both through intellectual capital and financially.

We look forward to talking further in the conference call on June 3 at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. If you have questions before then, by all means, please contact us.

For more information on the Conference Call and the Ad Hoc Coalition, see the Memorandum drafted by McDermott Will & Emery.

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NEW: Draft Guidance for Industry on Prescription Drug and Medical Device Promotion

Newly Added Guidance Document 5/26/2009

Source: FDA Website

"Guidance Documents will be retained on this list for a period of three months. After three months you will find them under their specific "subject" on this page. The most recently added guidances appears first and they are in the order of the date they were issued."

Link to download the PDF document of the draft guidance:
Presenting Risk Information in Prescription Drug and Medical Device Promotion

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Eight New Twitter Applications to Launch at 140 | The Twitter Conference

Eight talented developers plan to launch new Twitter-based applications at 140 | The Twitter Conference in Mountain View on Tuesday, May 26th.

Mountain View, CA (PRWEB) May 24, 2009 -- At the last session of the day on May 26th, eight talented developers will each reveal a new Twitter application to the hundreds of attendees at 140 | The Twitter Conference in Mountain View, CA.

The eight applications set to launch include:

TWILK is a Twitter background generator, creating backgrounds "auto-magically" from the collective pictures of the people you follow.


Flaggpole is a place-based social network that connects people through places that are important to them. These places could be a zip code, a neighborhood, a park, church, a school, a club or a business. After identifying a place, users can form virtual communities related to that place's function and use both micro-messaging and Twitter integration to organize meaningful interactions. Flaggpole can be used worldwide, though it is currently only available in English.


Publicitweet is a social media marketing application aimed at providing in-depth analytics for Twitter campaigns. The analytics go beyond the number of clicks and provide detailed information on which users had the most referrals and the overall reach.


Jobaba is a social marketplace for local services integrated with Twitter. When users need help getting something done, they can simply follow @Jobaba on Twitter and tweet the request with the keyword #ineed, and Jobaba will broadcast it to its network of service providers serving the user's local area. If the service providers have the proper skills to perform the job, they can use Jobaba to engage the person in need, place a bid, or set up meetings. Anyone with skills and a desire to provide services can create a profile on Jobaba, start networking with potential customers, and bid on job requests through Twitter.


ChatterBox is a collaboration platform used to track, categorize and respond to Twitter conversations. An intelligent, single point of access, this web-based interface pulls in conversations and creates a collaborative workspace that provides topical views of information - along with tools such as personalized views, assignment, categorization, prioritization, notifications and tagging - creating a more streamlined process to listen, organize and respond to conversations. As a result, social media power users and corporate teams can become far more effective in participating in relevant conversations, providing customer service, and generating stronger business leads.


TweetFunnel provides editorial control for organizations of all types and sizes. It allows multiple contributors within a company to submit tweets for editorial review and approval before they are added to the company's time line. TweetFunnel also allows editors to assign mentions and DMs back to appropriate contributors for their replies. There is in turn, an editorial review layer for these replies.


TwittyLinks lets you quickly tweet about any web page, without leaving the page. Each tweet builds your brand awareness, with a link to your own site. The more you tweet about interesting web pages, the more traffic you drive to your site.


Twittfilter is a filtering application that scores your friends and followers using a variety of scoring techniques including update rate, friend/follower ratio, keywords, and more. Twittfilter has 3 main features: 1) Your new followers are automatically ranked and only those that score above a preset level are emailed to you. 2) Messages are not viewed by time, but by user/score and only the first 3 are shown, in case someone tweets too much. 3) Twittfilter is also a searchable address book organized by how you communicate. There are many other features, check it out for yourself.

If you'd like to see these applications as they launch, it's not too late to buy a ticket for 140 | The Twitter Conference. Late pricing is $399, and tickets can be purchased from the conference web site:

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Monday, May 25, 2009

Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • Ed Silverman, "Pharma Still Finding Its Way in Social Media":
  • "Social media artists, the new generation patient opinion leader" (courtesy @whydopharma):
  • New York Times "Webcast Your Brain Surgery? Hospitals See Marketing Tool "(courtesy @GuyKawasaki):
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Pharma industry still finding its way in social media

May. 19th, 2009 by Ed Silverman
Original Post: Covering Health

Big pharma continues to dabble, tentatively, with social media. The latest example is GlaxoSmithKline, which this week launched its very own corporate blog, called More Than Medicine. The effort, which is edited by a corporate communications person identified only as Michael M, will purportedly devote more space to health issues but largely avoid discussion of Glaxo products, citing “unique regulatory parameters governing our communications” as a drug maker.

The inaugural blog post, which follows several weeks of internal testing that produced a few posts now on full view, contains some mixed feelings. On one hand, Michael M writes that “it is still unclear how, and in some cases, if pharma can appropriately utilize blogs, wikis, and applications like YouTube and Facebook to provide information about our products.”

“Yet,” he adds, “there is no question that patients, physicians, media, investors, payers, policymakers and others are increasingly turning online to social media resources for information about healthcare issues and products. So we feel obliged to these stakeholders, as well as our shareholders, to productively and appropriately engage in this new space.”

In other words, some trepidation remains, although perhaps not quite as much fear as existed several months ago (look here). Johnson & Johnson launched a corporate blog two years ago, although a blog run by its Centocor unit was recently lost to a corporate reorganization, and Glaxo runs a blog devoted to the Alli diet pill - sort of. There haven’t been any posts since September. However, Novartis, Boehringer-Ingelheim and AstraZeneca all use Twitter to deliver news about their activities; and Sanofi-Aventis and AstraZeneca launched branded YouTube channels.

Nonetheless, in a recent story, Marissa Miley and Rich Thomaselli of Ad Age wrote that big pharma is lumbering toward the digital age. Glaxo, for its part, may disagree. But if the drug maker truly wants to create dialogue around issues at the core of its corporate mission, Michael M should be identified properly. Glaxo is more likely to connect with the public if the public feels a real person is at the helm, not an semi-anonymous mouthpiece.

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Sunday, May 24, 2009

Yesterday's Tweets

A complete list of yesterday's tweets. Thanks for following. If you would like to follow, go to

  • Vatican gets hip with social media play: Facebook, iPhone, YouTube, and Wikis!
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