Thursday, November 27, 2008

Tweeting the Terror

Tweeting the terror: How social media reacted to Mumbai -

Rough title, there. Yikes. Even I wouldn't (probably) title something like that. The articles puts out a bunch of really good info. It makes mention of the blood donation/helpline tweets. It completely ignores #mumbai and the use of hashtags.

Still, it's an easy-to-understand "primer" of sorts on the role that services like Twitter played and are still playing. The article ends on a sour note for me, and I think that it illustrates quite plainly the distrust and confusion which surround "crowdnews." I shall reproduce the final lines here:

What is clear that although Twitter remains a useful tool for mobilizing efforts and gaining eyewitness accounts during a disaster, the sourcing of most of the news cannot be trusted.

A quick trawl through the enormous numbers of tweets showed that most were sourced from mainstream media.

Someone tweets a news headline, their friends see it and retweet, prompting an endless circle of recycled information.

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