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Saturday, 20 April 2013

What You Can Learn From the Boston Bombing Social-Media Circus

What You Can Learn From the Boston Bombing Social-Media Circus
This week's need-to-know social-media news.
After explosive devices detonated near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, killing three and injuring 180 people, social media sites including Twitter erupted -- but not always with trustworthy information. Several top news organizations came under fire for reporting information despite conflicting reports of what was unfolding. For business owners who often share or comment on breaking news over social media, it was easy to wind up sharing faulty information. And some brands ran afoul of consumer rage when their marketing efforts -- many running on automated programs -- were issued amid the chaos.
The confusion continued as the week went on. By Thursday, the FBI reprimanded users of sites like reddit for conducting their own digital manhunt for the Boston bombers. Similarly, local Boston police asked journalists on Friday to stop live-tweeting police actions and scanner traffic in order to preserve the safety of officers and the effectiveness of their manhunt.
Given the immediacy of how news is spread over social media, and the potential for sharing incorrect information, business owners should avoid sending scheduled marketing messages and commenting on moment-by-moment updates during sensitive breaking news events. For brands, a more effective use of social media could be to share links to positive and constructive services. In this case, examples might have included Google's Person Finder tool or EvidenceUpload.org, a way for people to send their photos and videos from the marathon directly to the FBI. -- PRDaily, ReadWrite, Daily Dot and Mashable


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