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The perils of social media

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Jack View Drop Down
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Joined: 24/February/2008
Location: United Kingdom
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    Posted: 03/November/2017 at 15:40
In the US over the weekend there is going to be a comms exercise, involving 
MARS and Radio Amateurs, simulating a large scale power failure, caused 
by a CME.

A woman reading about it, has mis-understood the scenario, and posted a video
on Facebook, saying that the US government is going to shut down the power
grid for 3 days. This has spread like a wildfire, and people are panicking and
rushing out to stock up on food and water, and some are even buying 
generators.

It just goes to show how social media can cause mass hysteria.

G8HIK Bolton RAYNET
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M0RYK View Drop Down
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Joined: 06/June/2013
Location: Tunbridge Wells
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote M0RYK Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/November/2017 at 17:04
I think one has to be careful in describing the rational reaction of a lot of misinformed, worried people as either panic or mass hysteria, because it’s (a) wrong, and (b) puts the blame in entirely the wrong place. If the story is accurate, the organisers of the exercise should learn a lesson about how to assess and manage the risks of an inaccurate version of events propagating across social media.
The essential lesson is that the only effective way to manage this risk is to get out there with the truth, and reassurance, fast, fully, and first.
MIke M0RYK / F4VRD
Co-ordinator, Kent County
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