Twitter Quake at 6:20 AM

HOW TO USE TWITTER TO FOLLOW BREAKING NEWS At exactly 6:20 AM this morning my bedroom rose up as if on a big wave then began to rock back a...

16 Dec 2008 2058 Views

HOW TO USE TWITTER TO FOLLOW BREAKING NEWS

At exactly 6:20 AM this morning my bedroom rose up as if on a big wave then began to rock back and forth. The motion was gentle but the sound of the walls and floor creaking was a little unsettling. When I lived in San Francisco we called these rollers (as opposed to rockers and rattlers) because they were like a powerful but gentle rolling wave passing underfoot. My first thought: “Earthquake”. My second: “In Sweden?”

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It was too early to call anyone so where to turn? Twitter of course. After checking my home for damage I twittered about the quake. That was seven minutes after it happened. Using Twitter Search I could see that seven people had already twittered about it. The fist twit was about a minute after the floor stopped moving. Staying on the Twitter Search results page I was able to monitor all new twits about the quake as they came in. At 6:34 AM someone posted a link to the European -Mediterranean Seismological Centre with an official confirmation of the quake and all its details (a 4.8 on the Richter Scale).  Better still I was able to interact with people in my vicinity to see what they felt.

This is the first time I’ve used Twitter to follow breaking news. It worked great and vastly out-performed any news service I could find. I even discovered a Twitterer who does nothing but twit about the latest earthquakes realtime. One more use for Twitter and one more example of social media in action.

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Sean Duffy | @brandranter
Speaker, consultant & founder of Duffy Agency, the flipped digital agency that provides accelerated growth to aspiring international brands.