10/21/10 294 W - + 10 - 3 Social Media and Social Sharing

Darn that Dave Statter. He can get a person thinking and making connections about issues being covered in the media. Witness his posting on Social Media & The Line-of-Duty Death. What happens when family members hears of a duty death via Facebook, and before more sensitive (and accurate) channels can be used?

Then there's his earlier story covering the story of a firefighter's cellphone video taken at an accident scene and subsequent shared with others. As his witty headline notes, both the video and the story have gone viral. That one's making national news.

What connections can we make here? For myself, it's about sharing. Human beings are social creatures. We are constantly communicating about what we see, learn, experience, etc. We share, and all the time. Social media-- or perhaps better labeled social networking technologies-- is making it easier than ever to disseminate information. Both in terms of scope and speed.

Bang, and something that's happened to a firefighter is reflected in Facebook postings of "prayers for the _______ family." Blink and an image of an emergency scene has been shared between two people. Stepping back a bit, the next question is the obvious one. What now? Policies and procedures are already being put in place by agencies, for such things as using cellphones or cellphones-as-cameras on scene.

Do such directives need to go further or farther? You can't legislate common sense, goes the adage. And it's pretty darn hard difficult to keep people from acting human. Compelling information has a tendency to spread. Mind you, "information" can be a mixture of opinions, incomplete perceptions, and hard facts. Chew on that for your morning thinking. Discuss as desired. Time to get moving for the day.

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