Why I Urge People NOT to Rely on Facebook and Social Media During Life-Threatening Weather

The full story is here.

During the November 17, 2013, tornado outbreak Facebook terminated by updates even though they carried vital warning information. It even happened with the February ice storm in the Southeast. Plus, as Dennis noted, only a small portion of my Facebook friends seemed to see the updates.
Radar on the free AccuWeather app
The AccuWeather app carries National Weather Service warning for the public-at-large (above). AccuWeather Enterprise Solutions has SkyGuard® Mobile for its clients.
Actual Lightning Strike with Actual Lightning Warning via
SkyGuard Mobile
In addition, there is local TV and radio, NOAA Weather Radio and other dependable sources. However, I would not depend on Facebook or other social media in life-threatening weather.


  1. Mike, I would rather say don't rely on the Facebook News Feed during life-threatening weather. There are several meteorologists profiles on Facebook I go to when I want weather updates, but I make sure I click on their profile page where I can see all their updates. I can't rely on the news feed to give all the updates to me.

  2. I have a specific Twitter list set up with many regional (and national-focused) meteorologists. Unlike the newsfeed (which doesn't post everything and isn't updated all the time, like you mentioned), the Twitter list updates every time there is a new tweet.

    This is actually one of the main reasons why I joined Twitter in the first place. News bulletins on TV and radio (unless they've cut away from the program) aren't very location-specific and can be delayed.

    Between up to the minute weather (what's happening, and more specifically WHERE it's happening), news stories before they've hit the TV (bin Laden, though ya have to be careful with this one... can't believe everything ya hear!), and sports (commentary or updates on games that aren't on TV), that's the power of social media in my mind.

    'Course, if it goes down, you're in the dark... but I have a wind-up radio too :-)


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