This week, I have really noticed three distinct trends on twitter related to diabetes. I know twitter is only one reflection of what Diabetics are thinking but it is pretty darn interesting. Here are the three I see, and maybe you will see some of the same or different trends.
The first is about curing Type 1. Now I am a type 1, so maybe I am seeing something that isn’t really there, but I don’t think so. The charge seems to be spearheaded by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) and is accompanied by this really cool logo which is gaining good traction in the blogosphere and on twitter. The logo is terrific, and it has some great power.
Goodness knows I am not opposed to turning type 1 into type none, but I am concerned that my Type 2 friends, might be a little put off by the emphasis. I think there is some danger of forgetting that diabetes is a big tent, and it is much more than Type 1 only. Of course there are many kinds (Check out my blog at http://www.tudiabetes.org/profiles/blogs/types-of-diabetes for a review of the various types of diabetes).
The problem is if diabetes month turns into Type 1 diabetes month only, then we willbe missing a big part of the puzzle that is our disease. I suppose this is more an observation than a complaint. I think that JDRF has a lot of followers (including me) but this slice of the pie must not be let to grow out of proportion. I do want type none, but for everyone, not just Type 1’s.
The second thing is a new practice of calling out popular myths about diabetes, especially with regard to Television. What I see are continuing rants about stereotypes that are told, believed and retold by folks who either do not know better or more likely do not care.
An example is the Blacklist, a little girl goes missing and they track her down using the GPS created by her insulin pump. The pump incidentally is a Medtronic, and this super advanced feature (which does not exist) ignited twitter when it aired back in January of 2014.
I have not seen the television show, but I hear constantly that Blackish (an ABC Sitcom) often refers to diabetes and often perpetuates myths about the disease. I saw a script from the pilot where a character named Rainbow said
” Danny Segalbaum has Type II Diabetes so that could explain his tuchis size” (Barris, 2014)
I have been told that this is the first references to an ongoing gag, which this character is diabetic and of course if other characters do not stop eating sweets they will be like him. At any rate twitter material discuss this show and their misrepresentation of Diabetes. Again I have not seen the show so I do not know for certain about the content of the program.
The third thing I see is a comment about the online diabetes community. It seems that the community of bloggers in particular is dominated by people with Type 1 diabetes or people who have children with Type 1 diabetes. This is a shame because it is easy for type 2’s and 3’s to start blogging and I believe they would be very successful. We need the voice of other types of diabetics in this space. Last year during blog week we had a pretty steady rate of about 100 bloggers per day. Few of those were type 2’s and while blogging is not the only way to express ones feeling, we are sorely lacking in this area. By we, I mean our greater diabetic community.
I posted a discussion item encouraging type 2 and type 3 blogger to join TUDiabetes growing community of bloggers. But it matters not where you blog, your voice can be heard. The thing is, without new type 2 and 3 bloggers joining our ranks, that part of the story is being overlooked. We must not let that happen.
I hope folks out there will add their voice to our blog community here on TUDiaebtes. I know someone out there has been thinking about blogging but for whatever reason they have not. If you are considering it please give it a whirl. If you do I am betting you will find the experience rewarding.
Barris, K. (2014). Black-ish, “Keepin’ it Real!”. [Screen Play for Television Program].