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Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:09 AM

 

Facebook and the bombings in Boston

I know there's a lot of anti-Facebook sentiment among people here, so I'd like to share a little story.

I knew dozens of people who were within a mile of the explosions today. Dozens. Several people I know were running the race, including my best friend who was the Best Man at my wedding. Pretty much everyone else I know was either down there to enjoy what is by far and away the best day Boston has to offer, or was at work busting their asses at the bars and restaurants down there that were packed to the rafters since 8am this morning. Pretty much everyone I know in this town was there. Everyone.

After the bombs went off, the cell phone network locked up, and then was deliberately shut down for fear that phone signals would inadvertently trigger other explosive devices that hadn't been found. What was still working was people's Facebook phone app.

One by one throughout the afternoon and evening, everyone I know checked in via Facebook to say they were safe.

Everyone.

I know this has nothing to do with the reason some folks around here don't like Facebook, but I just wanted to have it said: I am going to sleep a little easier tonight because of that social network site, because it kept working in a crisis, and let people get word out that they were safe. Never hit 'Like' so many times as I did today, as I saw friend after friend after friend checking in.

So anyway, there's that.

Stout hearts, all.

24 replies, 3391 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Facebook and the bombings in Boston (Original post)
WilliamPitt Apr 2013 OP
Agschmid Apr 2013 #1
PDJane Apr 2013 #2
delrem Apr 2013 #9
Hekate Apr 2013 #11
delrem Apr 2013 #13
Hekate Apr 2013 #15
delrem Apr 2013 #16
moobu2 Apr 2013 #3
KT2000 Apr 2013 #4
nutsnberries Apr 2013 #5
delrem Apr 2013 #8
anneboleyn Apr 2013 #17
crazy homeless guy Apr 2013 #6
delrem Apr 2013 #7
Oilwellian Apr 2013 #10
Hekate Apr 2013 #12
Recursion Apr 2013 #14
mnhtnbb Apr 2013 #18
MrBig Apr 2013 #19
Generic Other Apr 2013 #20
tabbycat31 Apr 2013 #21
Earth_First Apr 2013 #22
Taverner Apr 2013 #23
Dorian Gray Apr 2013 #24

Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:13 AM

1. Yup, it has been quite helpful. n/t

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:15 AM

2. Blessings. I have found that Facebook keeps me in touch..

With friends and relatives and those I would like to be friends. With activists and collectivists and causes. I realize it's being watched; I still will use it, because there's an awful lot of data, and I figure that the more data they have the harder it's going to be.

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Response to PDJane (Reply #2)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:02 AM

9. The more data, the more profitable it is. period.

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Response to delrem (Reply #9)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:19 AM

11. Maybe this isn't the right thread for your ire. Will's friends are ALIVE and let him know it.

Via Facebook. I don't use it either, but damn, delrem. There is a time and place for everything here at DU, and this probably is not it.

Hekate

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Response to Hekate (Reply #11)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:26 AM

13. OK, thanks, and I'm kinda a fan of WilliamPitt.

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Response to delrem (Reply #13)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:34 AM

15. Couldn't have known that from the 3 posts dissing Facebook

I trust we shall meet again on a better day all around, okay? This has been a bad one.

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Response to Hekate (Reply #15)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 05:28 PM

16. OK. and I apologize. nt

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:16 AM

3. Cell phone service wasnt shut down

It was just Cellphone congestion. But anyway, Facebook's ok I guess.

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Response to moobu2 (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:24 AM

4. that is what they say

but it is very possible that it was shut down. That is part of emergency response to things like this and natural disasters as well. Only emergency services are able to use phones.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 12:28 AM

5. my daughter had no other way

she could let me know that she was ok.

two weeks / twenty one years... not much difference, always my baby.

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Response to nutsnberries (Reply #5)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:01 AM

8. she doesn't know about email?

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Response to delrem (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 05:31 PM

17. Or twitter? Much, much faster than dealing with Facebook

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 01:40 AM

6. Facebooks on cellphones now!!!!! ..man this thing is going to be big.



Sorry, ..obscure Simpsons reference. But yes I agree, for as much as FB sucks it does provide a connection in a way that hasn't been seen before.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:00 AM

7. Yah. But I won't sign up for facebook or twitter etc., so that makes me shit out of luck, I guess.

If facebook weren't a company designed 100% on selling its customer information on to whatever purpose that brings in money, if it weren't so obviously so, I'd sign up. But as it is, this company is the antithesis of what I want the internet to be, and what the internet could be.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:12 AM

10. Kinda reminds me of our Egyptian friends

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:20 AM

12. Oh Will I am so glad for you


Thanks for letting us know some good news on a grim day.

Hekate

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 02:28 AM

14. I have about four dozen friends and family in Boston

Thanks to Facebook I knew everybody was OK within about 15 minutes.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 05:46 PM

18. So if fb is so awful...why not create an alternative?

I happen to have gone independent a long time ago (yes, Howard Dean fan in 2004)
and describe myself closer to a socialist than a Democrat these days.

But I also keep in touch with a lot of friends and family on fb.

So, Will, I'm glad you were able to hear about your friends.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 05:53 PM

19. Well said

For all the hate thrown at Facebook (some of it understandable), there are times it can play an immensely important role. I was able to make sure that a cousin of mine was safe through Facebook and a close friend and displaced Bostonian was able to check in on many of her friends and family as well.

I'm glad to read it was a great service to you as well.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 05:56 PM

20. That says a lot about what Facebook's real purpose should be

Family and friends.

It's the modern equivalent of the town square.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 06:04 PM

21. Facebook was great for me during Sandy

I live in one of the hardest hit counties by Sandy. At the time, I was working on a campaign in the south and in the middle of GOTV so I had no time to reach out to people individually.

One by one, they posted on FB and I knew people were ok.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 06:10 PM

22. The irony of those who bemoan Facebook on DemocraticUnderground with 5-digit post counts...

DemocraticUnderground has a lot more in common with a social media platform than they are willing to admit.

I'm glad that everyone close to you is safe and secure.

I wish peace and recovery to the residents of Boston in their time; and justice to those responsible.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 06:13 PM

23. Stout? Are you saying you want a stout?

 

Here bro....

Take as many as you need...






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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2013, 06:16 PM

24. For reasons like this

I love Facebook.

Glad all those close to you are safe.

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