Anyone who wonders why the Internet is the 800-pound gorilla in the 21st century newsroom needs only to pay attention to two events — an earthquake and a football game — that occurred in the early morning hours of Sunday, Aug. 24.
- EARTHQUAKE: The magnitude-6.0 earthquake (estimated) that occurred in the San Francisco Bay Area about 3:30 a.m. Pacific time started being reported on Twitter almost immediately. Raw video (see above) and photos followed soon after on social media (SM). As such, SM was a far better source of information than the East Coast television newscasts that began at 6 a.m. Sunday. Updates quoted Pacific Gas & Electric, the prominent utility, and the U.S. Geological Survey.
There also was local emotion, even showing a sense of humor. Check the following tweet:
One of my Facebook friends, a former Southern California colleague, also noted:
“Until this year, we haven’t had many earthquakes. It’s been unusually quiet since the Northridge quake in ’94. But that quiet spell seems to have ended.”
- HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: A football game in a metro Atlanta multi-game event that was supposed to start at 8:45 p.m. Saturday actually got under way after 10 p.m. — and finished about 1:30 a.m. Sunday. I learned of the outcome by an update from a Facebook friend, who attached a photo of his wristwatch with the finishing time. Of course, that was also too late for most local news outlets. But you can rest assured that all interested fans of North Gwinnett High and McEachern High — the teams involved — knew the outcome, either by watching live, or via text or social media.
— Did you have a social media interaction with either of these two events? Leave a comment below.