Some numbers don't matter, and some numbers do

Some numbers don’t matter, some numbers do: the #pharma100

pharma100

Henry Gazay and myself have never met in real life, although we have had a couple of near misses, most recently at this year’s EphMRA (PDF) meeting in Paris last month. We have, however, been connected for some time.

#pharma100 is born

Last week, Henry published the tweet reproduced above, and the #pharma100 list was born.

The idea is what it is.

There are no rules (beyond the act of nomination).

What the list should consist of is subject to interpretation.

Personally, I understood Henry’s tweet to be an invitation to nominate those people who  work in pharma and use Twitter effectively in their work. I proposed a number of long-standing contributors to the pharma conversation who hail from the industry whose thoughts I follow with interest.

Then, I set off for a meeting in London.

Doctors, and patients, and pundits — oh my!

That evening, I discovered that Twitter had lit up with #pharma100 posts.

Henry’s simple invitation had been understood to connote just about as many different meanings as it possibly could have done.

I reviewed the posts with interest.

Frankly, some were not particularly edifying.

#pharma is a hashtag I have maintained an ambient awareness of since 2008. Since it pertains to my business, I have a search open on it in my feed browser. Consequently, I have a reasonably well-formed sense of who has made a significant contribution to the discussions that have taken place over the last four years.

As the #pharma100 clamour escalated, I began to wonder what could possess people to want to game a list by means that I think it best we simply draw a veil over rather than draw attention to.

Perhaps they thought that being on the list was going to be a career-boosting achievement. You know, something they’d add to their LinkedIn profile.

Or maybe they’d had a recent epiphany as to what the social turn in business was going to mean to their enterprise, and wanted a short-cut to social (that’s not going to work out for you, by the way).

Or possibly they were anxious to be seen to be on the list because it’s the sort of thing they relished the prospect of being able to tell new and existing clients about.

I really don’t know, and I don’t think Joanna or Phil do either.

However, what I do know is that some numbers don’t matter, and some numbers do.

Make what counts to you something valuable.

2 thoughts on “Some numbers don’t matter, some numbers do: the #pharma100

  1. Pingback: Some numbers don’t matter, some numbers do: the #pharma100 « Health Care Social Media Monitor

  2. Pingback: #Pharma100 degrades the health conversation on the Social Web | STweM

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