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New Perspectives on Ethics, Session 2, Ofer Zur: Comment Board


ofer_zur_lrgThank you for attending the second session of New Perspectives: Ethical Standards for the 21st Century Practitioner. Today’s course, “Ethics in the Digital Age” with Ofer Zur covers some of the ethical challenges caused by technologies such as e-mail, search engines, and social media.

How has the Internet Revolution raised professional boundary issues? How do you handle clients who research you on the web, and should you ever research them? We hope you come away from this session with the answers to some of these questions and more.

Please take a minute to consider and everything you’ve learned so far throughout this New Perspectives webinar, and comment below about what’s been most interesting to you. What new strategies from today’s session do you think will be most applicable to your practice? Do you have any related experiences from your own professional or personal life that would be relevant here?

We invite you, as always, to please include your name and hometown with your comment. Thank you all for your participation and reflections.

01.24.2011   Posted In: P002 New Perspectives: Ethical Standards for the 21st Century Practitioner   By Rich Simon
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    • 0 avatar Susan Noble 01.24.2011 09:03
      Sorry I missed posting for Session 1. I was out of the office until late Saturday and listened to the recording late. Was logging in to post today but see it is no longer available. I apologize. I will have difficulty listening on the designated day and time but will be listening to the recording. How long will the posting site be available? Thanks for your patience and help.
      The thrilling aspect was around the subject of "collaboration" throughout the discussion! How empowering for the client to be included in decisions about ethics when the issue is about the safety of the client. I believe that the client knows best what make him/her feel safe even if we, as professionals, know healthy boundaries--the "collaborative process" allows for coverage on both ends! Exciting to me.
      Susan--New Orleans
    • Not available avatar 01.25.2011 07:08
      I found Ofer Zur's presentation to be highly valuable. Thank you. One topic we didn't have time to cover is the ethic issues surrounding Skype sessions. I have used Skype sessions for two different reasons: 1. A current client moved to another Country and requested that we continue sessions while she found another therapist and 2. a current client was homebound for a year due to a serious medical condition. I'm wondering what thoughts my colleagues have about: 1. any confidentiality issues and 2. whether it's okay to bill clients' insurance companies for skype sessions. I realize the answer to the 2nd question may vary from State to State and the policies of the various insurance companies.
      An unrelated comment -- There are times during these sessions when Rich and the presenter are talking at the same time so the listeners cannot hear what either is saying. Rich -- is there a way to prevent this from happening in future sessions?
      Susan from Seattle
      • 0 avatar jody jessup 01.31.2011 17:32
        To Susan from Seattle: If I have a Skype session I write "remote" on the bill. I have my clients do their own billing so we discuss the importance of their checking with their insurance carrier as to whether remote session are covered. I have gone to bat for clients and gotten the OK from insurance companies for remote in special circumstances because I live in a very rural area. It is typically not covered.
        Jody, Baileys Harbor
    • 0 avatar Darlene Cross 01.25.2011 07:10
      Relevant, important, well-chose topic and speaker. PLEASE address speaker and facilitator speaking over each other--very distracting. Thank you!
    • 0 avatar Rosaria Gabriele 01.25.2011 07:13
      Most importantly there is a need to figure out how to let this run more seamlessly. Too often, the conversations are running at the same time. It is having an impact on the effectiveness of this program.
      I was so happy to hear Ofer Zur's comments on respecting younger clients who use Facebook, texting as part of their lives. I personally needed to hear that and to be aware that we are entering or have entered a very new age. I am also appreciative of his website which may help to answer our many other questions. Rosaria from Lewisburg, PA
    • 0 avatar Cynthia Kelly 01.25.2011 07:14
      This was a very thought-provoking presentation. I am a digital immigrant and am constantly struggling to keep up with even the most basic advances in technology. While I am not currently practicing (am trying retirement for a while), I can see that many of these issues have arisen in the two years that I have been retired, and that if I do decide to go back to practicing any time in the future, I will have to completely revise my office policies to include things like Googling, Facebook, and text messages. I am grateful for Dr. Zur's expertise and guidance in these areas and will certainly access his site for more information.
      Cynthia Kelly, LPC
      Chester Springs, PA
    • 0 avatar chitra subrahmanian 01.25.2011 07:16
      Very informative and thought-provoking. I think the key words for me were: context, consciousness, and caution. I didn't like the idea of a permanent internet footprint..hence the caution. I liked the boundary that was drawn between the personal and professional use of sites like facebook. The concepts of Boundary and Safety highlighted by Mary Jo Barrett last week are equally relevant here. The only complaint I have was that there was considerable overlap between Rich Simon and Ofek Zur..you taked over each other frequently. Is this something that can be corrected for future sessions?
    • 0 avatar Diana Sillence 01.25.2011 12:51
      Diana Sillence - Wesley Chapel, FL
      I love listening to Dr. Zur and his refreshing comments about "being real." My transparency aligns more with Dr. Zur than with Mary Jo (who made good comments to consider). I certainly don't tell the client my life's story; however, if something comes up that I believe to be helpful, I will share a little to get a point across.
    • Not available avatar 01.25.2011 13:57
      Very interesting approach. Dr. Zur presented a wonderful way to bridge the gap for us "digital immigrants". Liked the emphasis on privacy!! Agree that understanding and respect can work to uphold ethical standards. Again, I hear the importance of communication and collaboration!
      Susan C. Noble, PhD, LPC
      New Orleans, LA
    • 0 avatar Kathy Miller 01.26.2011 08:36
      Useful, timely information and resources. I enjoyed Dr. Zur's engaging style, as well. I hope the technology delay causing periods of silence and periods of overtalking can be remedied! Kathy A. Miller, LCPC Chicago, IL
    • 0 avatar Ruth Gibian 01.26.2011 18:52
      Glad to hear some of these issues addressed that aren't addressed elsewhere, including googling clients and boundaries around social networking sites. The video delay was beyond frustrating, particularly when it resulted in talking over one another (I can abide the silences) -- either a high-tech or a low-tech solution is called for.

      Ruth Gibian, LCSW
      Portland, OR
    • 0 avatar carolyn koehnline 01.28.2011 06:24
      I found that the technological glitches were corrected when I just went to the audio version and clicked through the slides myself (no video)

      I appreciated this anthropological perspective on digital natives and digital immigrants. As a digital immigrant it increases my openness and decreases my huffiness. It was helpful to hear that Dr. Zur felt we too often label things we disagree with "unethical," making for rigidity and blinding ourselves to nuances and contexts.

      Bellingham, Washington
    • 0 avatar Sandra Nordquist 01.28.2011 07:17
      I appreciated the thoroughness of understanding the implications that the digital world implies as well as the resources given to further understanding. Also appreciated the reminders of the differences in lifestyles of older generation vs. the net generation. And I appreciated Dr.Zur's examples of hearing a client interact via cellphone or sharing a video together that the client created as enhancing one's understanding of each other. Although I agree to understanding/respecting other cultures(whether geographical or digital) I also hold that although different, there are some aspects of certain cultures that are inherently not the best, good or desirable based on transcendant values not bound in culture on which to evaluate. IE:Just because the majority of the population may have lesser degrees of privacy or a lesser tolerance for lenghty reading or face -to- face interactions doesn't mean that those things should be neglected nor modeled/taught....Sandra from Jerome, Idaho
    • 0 avatar Sandra Nordquist 01.28.2011 07:49
      Sandra from Jerome, Idaho
      Does anyone recall how the Ceu's are to be accessed exam- wise at the end of this course? I missed that email/memo somehow. (I like to know in advance of the process/timeline) Mr.Rich Simon, are you out there?
    • 0 avatar Psychotherapy Networker 01.28.2011 08:27
      Hello all - The CE Quiz will become available next Friday, February 4th, from the course materials page (where the MP3, slides, and other course materials are posted). We will send everyone an email when it is ready. Thanks for all your comments - keep them coming!
    • Not available avatar 01.28.2011 16:03
      Anita from Ottawa, Canada. Refreshing, thought-provoking and highly relevant. Dr. Zur's points really challenged me to reconsider some of my "immigrant" views. The presentation also validated my concerns regarding privacy and boundaries. This will be valuable information to share with colleagues.
    • 0 avatar Stewart Jackson 01.29.2011 02:19
      There were many helpful reminders and some new information in this presentation. I am a digital immigrant; no, more like a digital wanderer still trying to understand these new ways of thinking. I think that is the most challenging part of this-to think about therapy with the internet in mind. Looking forward to next weeks. I do appreciate being able to watch this as I can. Thanks for this great service. Stewart, Birmingham, Alabama.
    • 0 avatar Marcia Cotton 01.29.2011 07:06
      I appreciate the information regarding how ethical issues impact digital therapies. Also, I was very grateful for the clarification of the difference between ethical principles and standard of care that is presented in Dr. Zur's article.
      Houston, TX
    • Not available avatar 01.29.2011 12:13
      I enjoyed the anthropological approach to the digital divide and how it is one more "tool" we can use with clients. One question that wasn't covered entirely is the use of looking at client's Facebook profiles, especially if they have no privacy settings. This has come up in the agency where I work. Any thoughts?
    • 0 avatar Roia Rafieyan 01.30.2011 01:01
      I agree with other folks who have responded that Ofer Zur's presentation helped me to consider another perspective on the uses of technology as a possibly helpful and even necessary element in the therapy process. This is something to which I've had a great deal of resistance, and I'm very appreciative of the examples he gave. I'm wondering if all of these elements apply equally to the clinical supervision relationship. Another element for me, personally, is that I work as a music therapist, but I'm also a performing musician. Clients can easily access that aspect of my life online as well, and I've often wondered how to negotiate that aspect of things (short of having to give up performing entirely). Thanks for any thoughts anyone might have.
    • 0 avatar Merrilee Gibson 01.31.2011 07:05
      My first response to all of Dr. Zur's information was WOW! This is a whole area of ethical concern
      that needs FAR MORE attention than it has gotten thus far. My thanks to Psych Networker and Dr. Zur for venturing into this thought-provoking area.
      I would like to comment, though, that thus far I am staying with my (stated) boundaries in session of NO electronic distractions. I make a point of turning off my cell phone before sessions, and ask that patients do the same, unless there is a compelling reason for an exception. I believe that both therapist and patient are best served by total focus on session material, without distractions. Maybe that makes me hopelessly "20th century" but I feel quite strongly about modeling this focused attention on the patient's presenting issues.

      Merrilee, San Mateo, CA
    • 0 avatar Carol Kryder 01.31.2011 09:51
      I was blown away by the wealth of useful information from Dr. Zur. Thank you so much! If I hadn't had so many technical difficulties (my fault) I would have gotten so much more out of it. Please extend the time for the additional logon. I would like to listen again tomorrow.

      Carol, Colorado Springs, CO
    • 0 avatar Patricia Friel 02.06.2011 19:29
      I found this presentation by Ofer Zur to be most informative and timely given our digital age. However, I found Simon's comments/questions disruptive due to the time lag as his comments overrode Ofer's presentation. Can I suggest that the presenters deliver their material and that time be given at the end for questions/comments by Simon. Overall I am enjoying this training module. Thank you - Patricia Friel, Hervey Bay, Australia
    • 0 avatar Sandra Nordquist 02.07.2011 23:07
      Good non- technical solution, Patricia! Way to problem-solve and collaborate! Sandra from Idaho
    • 0 avatar Dawn MacKenzie 02.08.2011 14:41
      fascinating ideas - I've never thought of being googled! Many thanks! dawn from Kamloops, BC Canada
    • 0 avatar Val Beck Sena 02.09.2011 05:21
      Great presentation! So much I haven't even thought about. I do text - if I didn't I'd never communicate with my adolescent clients. But all the rest, WOW! I've never thought about my Facebook page. I will be visiting Dr. Zur's web page often.
      Val Beck Sena
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