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Beginner's Guide to Twitter

 

What is twitter?

Twitter began in 2006, and is a media tool that can be used by businesses like L-MARC Research Center to send short messages (limit 140 characters) that may be of interest to past, current, and future research study volunteers.

Through twitter, we can update you about what we are doing.

 

How do I find L-MARC Research Center on twitter?

Finding us on twitter is easy:

(1) Go to the L-MARC Research Center Index Page and click on "Follow us on twitter."

(2) Type (or copy and paste) http://twitter.com/LMARCResearch into the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) address bar of your browser.

(3) If you have a twitter account, sign in to twitter, go to "Find People", and enter "L-MARC Research" (with hyphen and space).

 

How do I follow L-MARC Research Center's "tweets" on my computer?

If you do not have a twitter account, and you found us as described above, then you should see our most recent announcements on your computer. Follow the twitter instructions ("Sign Up" or "Join Today") to create a twitter account.

If you already have a twitter account, and you found "LMARCResearch" by the methods described above, then you will see a "Follow" button, usually on the upper left of the twitter page. If you click on the "Follow" button, then you are now a "follower" of L-MARC Research Center. You may want to note the smart phone icon next to the "Following" button. If you provided twitter your smart phone number when initially setting up your accounts page, or by completing the items in the "settings" menu, then you can click on this smart phone icon and "tweets" will be sent directly to your smart phone.

You can just as easily "unfollow" tweets by clicking on the gear icon (often found to the right of "Follow"), and then click the "Unfollow" menu item.

 

How do I follow L-MARC Research Center twitter on my smart / cell phone?

One of the ways to receive twitter messages is to set up your smart phone (cellphone) to receive "tweets." If you would like to receive short text message (SMS text) announcements from L-MARC Research Center, then you should send a short text message (SMS) from your smart phone to twitter, and let them know. The "phone number" to enter for the US is 40404. The text message should be "follow LMARCResearch" (no hyphen or spaces). Once this text message is sent to twitter, then you will begin receiving L-MARC Research Center tweets (short text messages) directly to your smart phone.

Although the number of text messages from L-MARC Research Center are not likely to be so many as to be annoying, some smart phone users do not have unlimited test messaging plans, and may not want to be charged for receiving text messages. In this case, you may want to add a twitter application (app) to your smart phone (blackberry, Iphone, etc.) A twitter app is one of the most common (free) downloads from whatever phone you use. Once the twitter app is installed, you should search "L-MARC Research" (with hypen and space) to find the twitter username "LMARCResearch." For example, in a "Find People" search field, you would enter "L-MARC Research." Once you found us, then click on the "Follow" button.

IMPORTANT! To search for us, you will need to include the hyphen and the space of "L-MARC Research." This is in contrast to our username of "LMARCResearch," which has no hyphen or space.

 

Can I respond to a tweet?

If you are viewing twitter on a computer, and you place your mouse cursor over a tweet message, you will find a "Reply" option. If you received a tweet message by a short text message (SMS), then reply as you would normally reply to any SMS. If you are using a twitter app, and you click on the tweet message, then you will find a "Reply" option. Your reply will be sent in the format of "@username." In our case, the reply will be sent to "@LMARCResearch".

When replying to L-MARC Research Center tweets, it is important to remember that twitter is public. So you should avoid tweeting any protected health information, or any other personal information in your reply. Also, if you are wanting general information about L-MARC Research Center, it is probably best that you first visit our website at www.lmarc.com. Our website provides a wealth of information about who we are and what we do. Finally, given that we are not likely to respond to all reply tweets, if you have questions, you may find it best to simply contact us through our "Contact us Information Page".

Another option in replying to tweets is through a "Direct Message." This is twitter's private messaging service. To send L-MARC Research Center a Direct Message, you first have to "Follow" "LMARCResearch" as discussed above. To send a Direct Message, you would go to the "Direct Message" tab or link, and your direct message will likely be sent in a format of "d username", as in: "d LMARCResearch".

Although sending Direct Messages is an option, we discourage Direct Messages to us through twitter, because of the risk that such messages may be lost or left unanswered. Also, even though these messages are supposed to be private, we cannot guarantee privacy of direct messages. For these reasons, if you have questions, it is (again) best that you contact us through our "Contact us Information Page".

 

If I send a tweet, will this be sent to L-MARC Research Center?

If you are sending a tweet to your followers, your tweet will only be received by your followers. Your tweet will not be viewed by other LMARCResearch followers, unless they follow you, or unless L-MARC Research Center chooses to follow you (which is unlikely). You can click on the "followers" at twitter (or on your phone app) link to find a list of who is following you, and who will be receiving tweets that you send. However, if you respond to an L-MARC tweet (as described above), then other followers of L-MARC Research Center will be able to view your tweets.

 

What does it mean to "retweet" (RT), why would I do this, and how do I do this?

If you have a twitter account, and notified your friends, family, coworkers, and colleagues to follow you, then it is likely you have "followers." When you receive a tweet from L-MARC Research Center, you may want to resend this tweet to your followers. For example, if you receive a tweet from L-MARC Research study about a new study opportunity, your followers may have an interest in participating as a volunteer in one of our clinical trials.

If you are viewing twitter on a computer, and you place your mouse cursor over a tweet message, you will find a "Retweet" option. If you received a tweet message by a short text message (SMS), then depending on your phone, you may need to enter your retweet in the format of "RT @LMARCResearch". If you are using a twitter app, and you click on the tweet message, then you will find a "Retweet" option. Your reply will automatically be sent in the format of "@username." In our case, a retweet to your followers will be sent in the format of "RT @LMARCResearch," followed by a copy of what we sent to you. You might consider retweeting our announcements to your followers regarding new clinical trial opportunities at L-MARC Research Center.

With personal retweets, it is common that if a person retweets someone else, then in return, the "someone else" would retweet something from the original RT person. This is done for courtesy if nothing else. However, because we are a healthcare business involved in clinical research, it is unlikely that we can retweet messages from others. So if you retweet us, and we don't retweet back, please do not consider this disrespect. Clinical research is a highly regulated business, andwe have restrictive business practices that do not apply to most other businesses.

 

 

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