The Lower Limb Amputee Rehabilitation course this year is using a Facebook group for the course discussion forum as did last years Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation course. We have made this choice for a variety of reasons but we are aware that for some participants using Facebook is an issue that may limit their participation in the course. For this we are very sorry.
As an open and free course with thousands of participants our choice of discussion forum must take into consideration many factors including:
- Cost to the course participants
- Cost to the course course organisers and administrators
- Support requirements (particularly for registration and password issues)
- Ease of use and/or familiarity with use
- Facilitation of appropriate communication and connections between participants
With near universal use (more than 95% of our course participants already have a Facebook account), no cost to users and our experience during the SCI course showing excellent communication being supported, Facebook has again been selected again as the platform for this course.
We are aware that there are concerns with all commercial providers of online social media services over their use of user data and Facebook in particular is highlighted as aggressively exploiting this data for profit. For this reason we are actively reviewing free and open source options with which we could replicate the Facebook group in future open courses. Such a choice will incur an additional support burden and cost for Physiopedia and on the other people and organisations involved in delivering the course. So we will only take this step when we have found the right system and are also ready and resourced. So please bear with us for now and do consider setting up a temporary Facebook account
just for the course duration which can be deactivated or permanently deleted once the course has finished.