Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Amsterdam Plane Crash: Twitter,
Social Media, and the Anatomy of a Disaster

News of the plane crash involving Turkish Airlines flight 1951 near Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam broke first on Twitter, before being picked up by the mainstream media. It's an increasingly familiar story.

The playing out of major events in the world of blogs and social media is becoming an ever more familiar tale. Today’s plane crash just outside Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam broke first on Twitter, the popular microblogging service. Jonathan Nip, who lived near the scene of the accident, was one of the first to tweet about the crash. “Looking at a crashed aeroplane near Schiphol,” he wrote, just moments after the plane came down. “A lot of emergency services rushing to the scene,” he updated, a few minutes later. “Still no more info. Can’t find any info on the net.”

It’s the last part of that tweet that’s interesting, because it underlines the shifting dynamic of breaking news. Here was an eyewitness to an event who was able to broadcast the latest information far quicker than traditional broadcasters could. The internet, which Jonathan Nip usually relies on for news and facts, was being outpaced by his own direct experiences, which he in turn was sharing with the world via the medium of Twitter.

And from there, the news snowballed across the Twitterverse, the blogosphere and social networks. [Click for MORE]

Twittering Obama's Speech

President Obama spoke of the serious issues facing America last night, and while he was delivering his first address to a joint session of Congress, some of its members were busy providing color commentary through Twitter. If you take a look at the Twitterstream on Tweet Congress, you'll see that for the most part, last night's Tweets were respectful disagreements or enthusiastic support that went straight down party lines. [Click for MORE]

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1 comment:

Seth Simonds said...

Oh yes, things are changing. But how do we make the most of it? Is Twitter the new place to find leads or is it the source of stories themselves?

It's going to be a VERY interesting year in journalism!