Twitter crowdsourced China earthquake in realtime
May 12th, 2008

A major earthquake measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale jolted Wenchuan County in China’s southwestern Sichuan Province Monday afternoon. Details were given in an early report from Xinhua on Thaindian News and China View.

The Online Journalisme Blog of Paul Bradshaw keeps the world posted on twitters crowdsourcing role. Even BBC’s blogger Rory Cellan-Jones admits being quite impressed by the impact of the twitter coverage. And this is how media expert Rex Hammock expresses his observations:

The folks “playing around” with Twitter are creating something that is not just about “play.” It may remain an “edge” medium — a global police scanner for the news obsessed — but I stand by my predictions that Twitter will become the source people will turn to in the early, confusing moments of breaking news stories.

While the mainstream media scrambled to put up their “breaking news” headlines Robert Scoble alias Scobleizer, was early to tweet the news. Quickly there were live radio interviews, pictures, google maps, videos all being sent in real-time, says VentureBeat.

Rex continues stating: “As stories develop, the traditional models of reporting will kick in, but Twitter — because one can post to it via text-message, IM, e-mail, (and via secondary services, voice-to-text, audio, video or photos posted elsewhere can be converted into or alerted via “tweets”) — is a powerful eyewitness and message-relay platform.

And for the record, if I’m ever “inside” a breaking news story, Twitter is where you’ll find me“.

more about Twitter beating traditional media on News.com.au

Young Dutch Twitterer CasperOdJ and German microblogger Trusip were among the first live reporters from Chengdu China, while Bill twitters as Niubi from Beijing.

On Summize China’s latest earthquake info is wrapped up and there is a wikipedia page available on the 2008 Sichuan earthquake.


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