Hello and welcome to RDs4Disclosure UK (#RDs4DUK), established in 2014! We’re so glad that you’ve found it and can’t wait to help you to blog/use social media whilst upholding the integrity of our profession.
Our mission is to create a supportive community of UK Registered Dietitians who are dedicated to upholding the highest standards online. We believe that online communications should be impartial, transparent and honest. We are committed to the promotion of ‘best practice’ whilst giving the public what they want – practical support, tips and advice that is un biased, and has their best interests at heart.
This ‘community’ was established in the USA and then here to give UK RDs the confidence to use social media (including blogs) whilst complying with specific UK guidelines and EU legislation, which may not be applicable to other registered dietitians from around the world.
The dietitians who have set up this page *all wave hello* have had extensive experience of blogging and using social media, and as such have seen gained vast knowledge in the area. They wish to use this knowledge in order to help other dietitians to thrive online whilst not breaking the ‘rules’. The journey has been tough for some – a lack of guidance in past years has meant dietitians have had to ‘guess’ their way around establishing themselves online, however we now feel confident that we can guide you down the right social media path.
HOW CAN YOU GET INVOLVED?
To join our campaign you can read our “UK Specific 5 Guiding Principles” and then “Make the Pledge” to abide them. Your name will then be added to the “RDs4Disclosure UK Members Page” signalling your commitment to the community at-large. A specific UK badge will be provided for you to display on your site that signals to your local online community that you have made this pledge.
- 5 GUIDING PRINCIPLES
Blogging and social media are fantastic ways of raising the profile of dietitians whilst sharing our expert knowledge with the wider public. Good quality communications ensure that we promote healthy living and nutrition information in a positive way, with the interest of the public at heart. By doing this we protect the integrity of our profession and ensure the public see us for what we are, trustworthy nutrition experts.
By joining this group, you are pledging to adhere to the following guidelines:
- To blog or share information with the interest of the public at heart. Posts and statements should aim to improve the health of your following/readers and be based on the most up to date and accurate information possible.
- To disclose, disclose, disclose. Honesty and transparency should be at the centre of any media communications. Any financial or material gains you have received should be prominently displayed so that anyone reading your post can easily assess if there is a conflict of interest. For bloggers, this should also include a permanent disclosure policy (see our members page) for examples) displayed on and easily accessible from your home page.
- To only provide the public with your own honest opinion. Your employment or any financial or material gains should not influence your statements or choices.
- To continue to work within the HCPC standards for conduct performance & ethics, the IBA Guidelines, ASA and BDA Social Media Guidance.
- To adopt this set of peer enacted guidelines and direct people to them if you feel they are not acting in the interest of the public or our profession.
- UK Make the Pledge
To have your name and site added to the UK Members Page, you must abide by the 5 guiding principles of RDs4DisclosureUK above. If you have a website, it MUST contain a clear and prominent* Disclosure statement, policy or page. All sites will be checked to verify the inclusion of a clear and prominent Disclosure statement, policy or page. Sites not containing a Disclosure statement, policy or page will not be added to the Members Page.
*To be considered clear and prominent, a visitor to your site must easily be able to determine any real or perceived conflicts of interest, including affiliations, employment, financial or material relationships that influence or appear to influence your media outreach. The disclosure policy must also be clearly accessible from all pages of your website, including the homepage.
To make the pledge please email firstname.lastname@example.org & CC email@example.com with the following information:
- Name (required)
- Credentials (required)
- Link to Disclosure page/statement/policy (required if a blogger)
- Social Media Handle (if used)
By submitting this information you are indicating that you have adopted the Guiding Principles of RDs4Disclosure and would like to be added to the Blogroll. Please also indicate if you would like to receive a badge to display on your site.
TIPS AND EXAMPLES OF CURRENT DISCLAIMERS WRITTEN BY UK RDS
Here are some key points to include when writing a disclaimer for your blog (ignore this if you don’t have a blog or website!).
- Where to put your Disclosure:
Have your disclosure clearly marked and accessible from the home page of your website. Link to it on any sponsored blog posts or reviews.
- Who you are Registered with:
Registered with HCPC and BDA and your credentials. Pledges with RDs4Disclosure
Adhere to the HCPC standards: “Any advertising you do must be accurate and done in a responsible way. You must not make or support unjustifiable statements relating to products. Any potential financial rewards should not play a part in the advice or recommendations of products and services you give.”
To adhere to the IAB guidelines for sponsorship and advertising which say you must make it clear when paid for a promotion or blog post. Including the use of #spon #ad or #sp in your tweets. To abide by ASA guidelines when using affiliate links.
- General Info:
Information on your website/blog is not a substitute for seeing a dietitian/doctor.
Sponsorship – any sponsored blogs whether this be monetary or in the form of free products will be disclosed.
Your rules around product reviews – for example reviews being your own opinion even if sponsored.
Advertising – if you accept these and your rules around these
Priya from Dietitian UK
Further Guidance & Links
NEW 2017 ASA Affiliate Rules: For Social Media Influencers
Health and Care Professionals Council: Social media guidance: Focus on standards – social networking sites
BDA Making Sense of Social Media [Members Only]
PENNutrition eNews: Social Media Section
Volume 2 Issue 1 – Dialling into the digital age Part I – Don’t be antisocial
Volume 2 Issue 2 – Dialling into the digital age Part II – Maintain professional boundaries and privacy
Volume 2 Issue 3 – Dialling into the digital age Part III – Be honest, informed and transparent
Volume 2 Issue 4 – Dialling into the digital age Part IV – If in doubt, spell it out
Volume 2 Issue 5 – Dialling into the digital age Part V – Jump on now
Volume 2 Issue 6 – Dialling into the digital age Part VI – Be aware of the possibility for social success and risky business
Volume 3 Issue 3 – Social Media Corner: What is a twitter chat?
Volume 3, Issue 4 – Social Media Corner: The paradoxes of pop science
Blogging & Social Media Resources
Dietitians Association Australia: (2014) ‘Guiding principles for engaging with social media: A fact sheet for DAA members (member access only)
Dietitians Association of Australia’s (2011) ‘Dialling into the digital age: Guidance on social media for DAA members’ resource
Peng Q, Probst Y (2012) Growing use of Social Media: How can Dietitians embrace this trend?
American Dietetic Association Dietitians in Business and Communications (2009): Social Media 201
Accredited Practising Dietitians Emma Stirling, Heidi Sze, Teri Lichtenstein, Jemma O’Hanlon (2014) The Scoop on Blogging Secrets – for health and lifestyle bloggers
Nutrition Australia (2014) Webinar recording: Social media for nutrition professionals
If you can suggest any more links for this page please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org