There have been some interesting updates on the use of Twitter via mobile in disaster response this week, and we encourage you to read our full post on an interesting integration with The Red Cross, Voila, and Twitter’s fast follow function in Haiti.
It is important to remember that mobile updates in disaster response not only serve to inform, but to provide direct aid as well. As in the Haiti earthquake and the floods in Pakistan, crisis-mapping tools that collate data received via SMS and other means and then plot it on interactive maps take a key role in connecting victims sending mobile updates with rescue workers and aid organizations who can offer help. This week here at Twitter HQ, we were happy to speak with Jon Gosier, Director of Product for Ushahidi. Organizations like Ushahidi build interactive mapping tools that democratize information, increase transparency and lower the barriers for individuals to share their stories. In this video, Jon explains how crisis mapping works:
With the recent cholera outbreak in Haiti, HealthMap, an openly available public health intelligence system that brings together information from many sources (Tweets, SMS, Web updates, etc.), has brought together just such a map to report and support:
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