I have seen a lot of incorrect information out there on social media sites. I think a lot of users believe that because a board is by invitation only or a “closed” board, it somehow makes the information more reliable. Here’s a great example of a scenario that I see very often on food allergy boards:
Question: Have any of you found a specific product that is free from (insert your allergy here)?
Many members begin to comment, and some of them may be correct, but many are not. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Did this person very recently call the manufacturer?
- Did this person ask the right questions of the manufacturer?
- Do you know that the person responding to the post has the same level of sensitivity as you do?
- Is this person a legitimate food allergy sufferer or a company rep trying to push a product?
- Do you trust someone you do not know to give you the OK to put a product on or in your body?
Chances are, the advice you are getting may not be as reliable as you had hoped. However, there are situations where asking this question in a social media group can be helpful. If you are planning to take the product list you are given on the board and call each manufacturer, then this information may be useful as a starting point to do your own research.
. It’s important to make sure that the phone calls you make give you the information you need to avoid an allergic reaction.