Some may think it just a tad early to publish an analysis like this one from Purple Car but for those helping those helping others deal with this tragedy, I think it’s a worthwhile read. If you are uncomfortable with thinking about this right now, I fully understand. Perhaps you can bookmark the link and come back to it later. It really is a good topic of discussion for social media and emergency management (SMEM) and the blog is well worth adding to one’s feed.
What is and is not appropriate to post during and directly after a tragedy like the #BostonMarathon explosions or #SandyHook is something that I think we all grapple with. Note that I make a distinction between posting as a bystander and posting as virtual operations support teams (VOST), in which case, one would have specific knowledge of the incident.
My personal [bystander] rules tend to be:
- Does the post help people (donation links, missing persons, etc)?
- Does it inform without conjecture (need to know – road closures; evacuation info, e.g., rather than simply breaking news)?
- Does it comfort (think Mr. Rogers)?
If it does none of the above, I would question its usefulness. What do you think? Do you have different rules? More rules?