Bulletin: October 2018
Comments on Social Media
We have recently been alerted to various comments made by certain hypnotherapists on social media platforms that have been considered by some to bring the profession into disrepute by ‘undermining public confidence in the process or profession of hypnotherapy’ (Clause 21, GHR Code of Ethics),
Whilst it is not the GHR’s intention to ‘police’ social media at all – an impossible task that would anyway go way beyond our remit – we are nonetheless duty bound to follow up on complaints that may be brought by members of the public or fellow practitioners/trainers against either GHR registrants or training providers who offer GHSC accredited courses.
The most common complaint is in respect of negative comments posted about the questionable ability and/or techniques of other practitioners, typically followed by how the writer has had to address the damage left behind when the clients of these allegedly poor practitioners subsequently seek help from them.
A further common complaint is in respect of postings by training providers lamenting the standard of training and/or the dubious techniques taught by certain other trainers and then going on to extol the virtues of their own training by comparison.
Of course, we’re all aware that there are some inadequately trained practitioners offering their services and training providers that offer courses that are woefully short on both time and content but to highlight this by trumpeting one’s own presumed abilities over these service providers is hardly convincing of the motive behind it.
Whereas there is nothing intrinsically wrong with debating the issue of poorly trained practitioners and/or questionable training courses via social media, it rather depends upon how these arguments are presented in order that they might not be construed as undermining public confidence in the profession generally.
Our view would be that such published material should be tempered by reassurances that the majority of practitioners and trainers comply with the current agreed standards of practice and training respectively, along with advice that prospective clients and students should always thoroughly check the credibility of the service or product into which that they are considering investing time and money before financially committing themselves. Neither should the writer specifically name (or describe in a manner that might possibly identify) an individual practitioner or training establishment about which they are expressing doubts.
Whilst there is no attempt here by the GHR to stifle open discussion, if writers feel the need to debate such matters at all, they should confine their views to generalised statements about the regrettable existence of poor quality services (which, after all, exist in every area of human endeavour), and should they wish to complain about any named individual practitioner or training establishment, they should do so via the appropriate channels of the relevant Professional Body to which that practitioner or trainer belongs.
With respect to negative reviews posted by former clients about the service received from a practitioner or students about their experience with a particular training school, yet another common complaint is in regard to hostile, antagonistic or offensive comments posted in response by the respective practitioner or training provider concerned.
Always bear in mind that social media is something of a wild beast and should best be approached with a degree of caution; any aggressive moves you might make on it may well draw its attention to you in a most unwelcome and potentially damaging manner – and could well be there permanently for all to see.
The Administration Team
Views expressed within GHR published material and any conclusions reached are those of the authors
and not necessarily shared by other individuals, organisations or agencies
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