Using Twitter as an Emergency Broadcast Network

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We have seen it more often than not lately, and many of us have been taking it for granted: Twitter as the place to go for rapid communication during an emergency. Here in the Boston area, we saw the whole East Coast rely on Twitter as a communications vehicle during Hurricane Sandy. Then, more recently, as a means for the Boston Police Department and Mayor’s office to communicate with us during the hunt for the Marathon bombing suspects. But was this Twitter’s intent? It was never intended to shoulder the responsibility of citizen uprisings, terrorist manhunts and acts of God. The onus on them for uptime and bug-minimal software is greater than on most. Can they handle it?
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