The Speed of News and Earthquakes

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I’m a little embarrassed to say that I get most of my news from the internet. And not from a reputable news source. Most of the news I read about comes from Facebook and Twitter.

This afternoon, I got up from taking a nap with my toddler to find my Facebook and Twitter feeds covered in talk of the earthquake. I live in Western NC, and an earthquake is pretty rare around here. Despite that, several people I know in the area had felt the earthquake.

I immediately texted my husband, who was on his way to work, and my best friend who lives near Charlotte, NC. My husband said that he hadn’t felt the earthquake. But my best friend didn’t even know about the earthquake.

She had just moved and was without internet or cable at home. She had felt the earthquake, but had no idea what it was. She also didn’t know anything about Hurricane Irene which is headed this way. I filled her in as best I could via text message.

The speed of news travels fast via social networks. Some even said that they read tweets about the earthquake before they felt it. There is a really funny webcomic by xkcd that illustrates this point.

It also shows how out of touch you can be if you don’t have the internet. With all the chatter on the internet, I was a little surprised that my best friend hadn’t heard anything about it because she does have a smart phone.

How did you hear about the earthquake?

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6 thoughts on “The Speed of News and Earthquakes

  1. Hehe! I heard it. ;o) I’m just north of DC, so I definitely felt it. My entire company went crazy. It was kind of funny looking back on it. Glad everyone seems to be okay!

    1. Oh, and I got my “news” about it and most of the words that my friends and family were okay via Facebook. Cellphones were not working after it due to network congestion.

  2. I’m in Delaware and I found out about it when I woke up from my nap because the bed was wiggly all over the place. I lived in L.A. for a few years so I’m no stranger to quakes and that one was a doozy!

  3. Hahhah, this is exactly what it was like for me! I’m up in Pennsylvania, so it wasn’t much– I thought the kids were jumping around in their rooms instead of napping like they should have been! But then it was suddenly all quiet again, and the next minute my Twitter page in front of me is full of earthquake tweets from people all over the east coast, and I actually just said, “OH! So that’s what happened!”

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