At 5:10 PM Tuesday afternoon I learned of the earthquake in Haiti from a twitter update by @cnnbrk. CNN apparently didn’t have any reporters in Port Au Prince at the time, so they relied on social media for news.
One of CNN’s first updates after the quake came from World Vision:
World Vision International official: Quake left people “pretty much screaming” all around Port-au-Prince, Haiti. http://bit.ly/4ilYl
Shortly afterwards CNN set up a Haiti Twitter list which aggregates the tweets of those using Twitter to post updates from Haiti. Many of those on the list are missionaries or missions/relief organizations operating in Haiti.
Almost immediately Compassion International and WorldVision began fundraising for relief efforts and spreading the word via Twitter. Compassion has built relationships with leading Christian bloggers like Shaun Groves and Carlos Whittaker, and so not long afterwards they began blogging here and here and tweeting here and here about Compassion’s efforts.
@MichaelGHolmes posted even more ways social media has played an integral role in the events that followed the earthquake on his blog and the AP even did this video news report: Twitter, Facebook play big role in helping Haiti
It’s really been quite remarkable. In fact, I have not turned on the TV even once for news about the quake. I’ve gotten all my news online.
How has social media impacted your response to the Haiti earthquake? Have you been reading blogs and tweets about it? Have you given online?