Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Twitter Captures The News

We all remember Flight 1549 crashing on take off from New York and almost hit George Washington Bridge, captured on a mobile and downloaded on YouTube. News no longer waits for the next edition or even the news broadcast slot, it’s instantaneous and captured by everyone with a mobile with a camera.

Techdirt today offers a useful and insightful way in which how and what we communicate is still evolving. Twitter may not seem the right vehicle to capture events in a few words but it constant stream of twitter can provide views and thoughts uncensored, unedited and raw as they happen.

Today it has given us insights into the troubled post election Iran which have been posted on the Iran Twazzup page . This view into Iran was made possible by Twitter and the ability of thousands of people to easily communicate on the streets of Tehran and elsewhere. It's really quite impressive, and I'm hard pressed to see how anyone could look at what's coming out of Iran via Twitter, and then claiming that Twitter isn't a useful or different communication tool. It doesn’t mean every comment is genuine, nor that each is worth the read, but together they capture a movement and within them there are those gems which truly capture news.

We can think back to disasters that happened in the last half of the 20th century and what would have been different if we had Twitter and You Tube and of course the mobile phone. Would the fog that surrounded Hillsbough or Bloody Sunday still be with us today. Would we have sorted out what happened on that grassy knoll in Dallas.
Techdirt also reported that Twitter’s data center partner, NTT, have actually chosen to delay some critical updates, knowing that cutting off communications from Iran just as so many people are relying on it would be a disaster.

News tomorrow will be broken by the person on the street with a smartphone.

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