notes from the listserv

As an AOTA member, I subscribe to a couple of special interest listservs in an effort to get smarter semi-randomly. Yet, I often want to unsubscribe for one of two reasons:

1. Failure to observe internet/listserv etiquette. Perhaps I'm a spoiled person, having had internet access since I was 10, but there are some basic rules that people should observe online when their words come into my sphere. Please!!! Don't type in caps! Use a subject in your emails! Send a direct reply to the sender if your message does not contribute to the entire discussion (e.g. "thanks" or "can you send that to me too?").

2. OT Trolls. Yes, they exist. They seize on an opportunity to argue, in detail, about whether Person A is doing OT, what the difference between OT and PT is, whether the original poster was being a good OT or not... ad nauseum. I've wondered about suggesting that a new listserv be created just so that people can keep their biased partisan arguments about OT ("OT's can't walk people! That's PT!" vs "It's better to walk them than to do a stupid craft or game!") somewhere else. Perhaps I wouldn't be so irritated about this fight about the OT domain if we didn't have a practice framework that detailed an outline for therapy, or if this exact same fight didn't already happen a few months ago when the last RA motions were up for debate, or if it didn't all look suspiciously like one person stirring the pot in an effort to get more attention to their website and ideas.

An open call to stop this foolhardy "debate" if you can call it that. Functional mobility is part of the OT practice act. Enabling and Prepartory activities are part of our treatment framework. Crafts and games are at the foundation of the profession from the Reconstruction Aides. All of the arguers are right. And wrong, because limiting your practice to only one of these areas is not OT either. OT is a beautiful profession because at its core is the belief that engagement in meaningful occupation will promote health. Don't limit yourself as a practitioner, or you will limit us all, and our clients.

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