Do you Periscope? I’ll bet most readers have never heard this question at the time of its writing, but it will soon be much more common. Periscope is the new mobile device communication app which allows a broadcaster to instantly stream a live video to a large number of other users. This ability is not new. YouTube has had similar capability improving over the last few years. What is new about this app is the two-way live communication which occurs. The viewers can text comments and questions which are posted in the video stream. Most broadcasters on Periscope respond in real-time to the text messages. Some viewers even start up conversations with each other as the session progresses.
I don’t believe we have fully witnessed the potential for this new communcation tool. Most sessions are little more than a person talking about their day to a group of mostly strangers. Some are more interesting with a person sharing an event or exotic location they are attending. Some are video version of a Reddit IAmA. Some physicians are using the platform to teach about medicine to an interested audience. I have been one of a number of physicians taking advantage of this ready audience to answer questions and dispel medical myths. There have been a total of over 80 sessions in a little over 40 days since I first installed Periscope. Sessions include Q&A broadcasts called “Ask the Doctor” and live streaming of procedures on patients (with consent) at the Auburn Medical Group. Both patients and Periscope viewers have enjoyed the experience. There are even follow up questions on Periscope by viewers interested in the outcome of procedures from prior sessions.
Missy Berggren of WCG’s Common Sense Blog published a post this week on myself and two other US physicians who are similarly using Periscope. If you are interested in seeing Dr. Vaughan on Periscope you can follow @doctorvaughan on Twitter or download the Periscope app.