Using twitter as an outage notification

Marshall Eubanks tme at
Sun Jul 5 11:01:45 UTC 2009

On Jul 5, 2009, at 6:23 AM, Roland Perry wrote:

> In article <4A4FD58B.2000703 at>, JC Dill <jcdill.lists at 
> > writes
>> Even easier, you make an email address on your system that is an  
>> alias to posterous.   So they send to "post at"  
>> which .forwards out to posterous, which posts to the school blog,  
>> myspace, facebook, twitter,
> It doesn't have any of those, that's the point really.
> Is twitter the one I should get them started with first?

I would say this partially would depend on how and what you want to  
communicate. If there is just going to be
one pronouncement per day (the school is up / down / delayed), then  
facebook and / or myspace would suggest themselves.
They are to date free, and the students will know what they are. I  
would start with facebook.

If you look at the #AuthorizeNet situation, there was a lot of back  
and forth. Will the schools have a need for
back and forth ? If they do, then, yes, twitter might be part of the  
solution and you might start with it. It's free, cross-platform, and  
you can also assume that the students (if not their parents) know what  
it is. This might also be a good for teachers and
the school to communicate, say by DM (direct messages).

Note that this will take people answering questions / dealing with  
issues on twitter. Specifically, someone would have
to  pay attention
to it during any quasi-emergency period - do the schools have such a  
person ?

Also, if the school looses power in a storm, is there a backup means  
of getting to the Internet ?


>> Show them how a radio station can retweet the info
> It's have to be automated as there are hundreds to do over a periods  
> of a few tens of minutes (the schools don't generally announce they  
> are closing until they see how many teachers made it to work, and  
> that's not long before they have to open - students get marked down  
> for being late, even in bad weather, so can't delay setting out from  
> home; it's an interesting operational model.)
>> and then announce "to get info on school closings, follow us on  
>> twitter at...."
> (but it's not exactly high traffic)
>> and everyone can send the info TO the radio station and get the  
>> info FROM the radio station quickly and easily.
> The radio station would probably be overwhelmed if they got much  
> more than one tweet per school.
>>> I don't think it has. All they ever hear about other Web2.0 like  
>>> Facebook and Bebo is how dangerous they are for kids.
>> Sheesh.  Cars and bikes are far more dangerous for kids than  
>> Facebook and Bebo.  That's why kids are taught the rules of the  
>> road, to always wear bike helmets, to always buckle up in the car,  
>> and they get driver training.
> Part of my day job is getting that sort of training about using the  
> Internet, into schools. So far most of them have only got as far as  
> teaching the students how to operate Powerpoint (yes I know that's  
> not an Internet application), and installing filters to try to keep  
> them off YouTube during lessons.
>>> But I'm beginning to think that finally maybe Twitter has the  
>>> right profile for this application.
>> Again, why limit yourself?  Use all the tools available.
> One step at a time :)
> -- 
> Roland Perry

Marshall Eubanks
CEO / AmericaFree.TV

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