Back to the future: a history of ACOG in social media's golden age

Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Dec;26(6):495-502. doi: 10.1097/GCO.0000000000000123.


Purpose of review: To chronicle a medical professional society's adoption of innovation and to describe themes pertinent to the adoption.

Recent findings: In September 2013, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) published a Committee Opinion on Toxic Environmental Agents that included an infographic and social media awareness campaign. To date, it claims one of the highest total audience reaches for an ACOG Facebook post reaching nearly 18 000 viewers. Despite this powerful promise, ACOG's timely and successful social media campaign did not always appear an obvious strategy. Although social media took hold of popular culture in the early 2000s, social media's professional etiquette remained uncharted and rife, with cautionary tales through the latter half of the decade.

Summary: Through a thoughtful and dedicated process, the ACOG Fellow and Junior Fellow leadership partnered to navigate the appropriate balance of innovation and prudence that propelled ACOG into social media's golden age, and paved the pathway for more progressive institutional changes.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Consumer Health Information* / trends
  • Female
  • Gynecology / education
  • Gynecology / history*
  • History, 21st Century
  • Human Rights / education
  • Humans
  • Leadership
  • Male
  • Obstetrics / education
  • Obstetrics / history*
  • Organizational Innovation
  • Patient Advocacy* / trends
  • Social Media / statistics & numerical data*
  • Societies, Medical / history*
  • United States
  • Women's Health* / education
  • Workforce